HOT: Kelly vs. Streams
Spotify opened up an interesting debate/can of worms when announcing it was punishing R. Kelly after two decades of sexual assault allegations. The service’s new policy against “hate content and hateful conduct” (call it “The R. Kelly Rule”) limits the reach of offenders, not by removing their music, but by banning it from curated playlists. Apple Music did likewise shortly after the announcement. While well intentioned, some noted that the rule created a slippery slope. Reps for rapper/singer XXXTentacion, who was also hit with the ban, made a list of artists (from David Bowie to Miles Davis) and their corresponding crimes and allegations, and asked if Spotify would also be removing their work from playlists.
WARM: Duke VP Takes the L
Last week, the vice president for student affairs at Duke University made headlines after being so irritated by Hip Hop artist Young Dolph’s song “Get Paid” being played loudly at a coffee shop on campus (it had bad words!), he had the two employees working there fired (even though they quickly turned it off and apologized immediately). The action caused students to protest and the coffee vendor to close the shop and rehire the baristas, who also literally got paid $20,000 by Young Dolph after he invited them to a concert in Miami in the wake of the incident.
COLD: So Random!
The marketing for Deadpool 2 is already a bit much (the main character even guest-edited a stunt issue of Good Housekeeping for some reason). Branding people co-opting the smart-ass, snarky movie’s tone seems like a recipe for disaster considering most of the smart-ass, snarky members of the target demo notably have finely tuned bullshit detectors. The film’s PR blitz also included an on-brand (and planted) news item about the film’s music that threw it back to the ’80s when the stickers were introduced as a deterrent, but had the exact opposite effect (to the delight of the music industry). Because they’re mostly instrumental, no movie’s original score has ever been forced to include a “parental advisory” warning. But the cool kids behind Deadpool don’t play by society’s rules, grandpa! The movie’s score received the designation because of track titles like “Holy Shit Balls” and “You Can’t Stop This Mother Fucker.”