What can we all get from the public ranting and bullying between the most important role models in the industry? Nothing positive. The news of Scooter Braun‘s Ithaca Holdings LLC buying Big Machine Label Group, which includes all of Taylor Swift‘s catalog, has been having an immense impact on music’s social media universe. As much as I support Taylor Swift for speaking out and advocating for artists to own their “masters,” it is hard for me to back the way she criticized the agreement attacking Braun’s name.
A social media blog post by Taylor Swift was all it took to unleash the snowball of tweets, “posts,” and “stories.” Now, we have pop stars like Justin Bieber, Demi Lovato, Halsey, Sky Ferreira, many other industry professionals taking sides in support of their champion (Braun vs. Swift). However, the intentions have not only been in favor of one or the other (or, deal or no deal) but instead, it has been aimed to harm other’s names and public image in front of the fans.
And that is where the problem begins.
Like it or not, both Swift and Braun are worldwide role models. For thousands of musicians and industry professionals, these two are epitomes of hard work, determination, and success: both of them are now at the top of their craft. For millions of fans, Taylor is the greatest artist ever, and for others, Scooter can be considered as one of the most successful managers working alongside Ariana Grande, Justin Bieber, Kanye West, J Balvin, etc.
These two are icons in the teenage-young adult music and entertainment markets.
The fact that they are now arguing and calling each other names over public virtual space is worrying. First of all, they are already at an age they should treat these issues more maturely. Second, everyone is watching. Kids, teenagers, aspiring artists, and musicians, are contemplating how these two “greats,” and the “stars” fueling the argument, have no regard for name calling and public defamation – and yes, they do not have to use profanity to accomplish this.
It seems like two “anti-bullying” role models, are actually going for bullying on social media. Or what other need do they have to make it so public?
Moreover, the whole narrative used to address the news and the unconformity about the deal has changed the focus of what could be the real issue, and it backlashed Swift. If we think about it, maybe the whole matter should have pointed towards the ownership of the “masters” and why artists should always work to own theirs’. Instead, innumerable artists and publications are still coming out talking about Taylor‘s rhetoric and not the fact that her whole music catalog was bought when Big Machine accepted Braun‘s deal.
In her defense, she did mention “master” ownership on her blog post, yet, the topic took a turn by the way she attacked Braun.
I am not going to take sides between Braun and Swift as I said, I believe it is entirely unnecessary and meaningless. What I would like to see, as a music industry professional, is the top players being mature and understanding of their role model status so we can teach the new generations how music, and business, can and should be carried out.
According to a 2015 article from The Washington Post (and also CNN), “a study by Common Sense Media revealed that teens are spending nearly nine hours on average using social media (including video and music).” And this was four years ago.
As days pass, more and more artists weigh in the conversation. The story is still under development.
In case you want to go deeper, here are some Links to guide you through the storm:
- Big Machine Label Group news.
- Vox – The Taylor Swift/Scooter Braun controversy, explained
- CNN – Scooter Braun has reached out to Taylor…
I personally recommend this one: Vulture – In Taylor Swift vs. Scooter Braun, Who’s Lying?
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