Tuesday, March 1st, 2005

Of 50 and More Hot 97 BS

The 50 fiasco at Hot 97 is simply more proof that it’s all about ratings–whether inciting interracial tensions or intensifying street beef.

In the old days and still today in hip-hop, community structures are in place to deal with beef. I was at a b-girl battle this weekend at Ken Swift’s joint where some beef threatened to break out in between the competitive rounds and folks stepped in to regulate right away. Everyone peaced it up at once, and everyone left the club feeling great about the whole evening. These days, we don’t control everything, so when battling–which is central to hip-hop and which you can’t ever take away, not as long as you want the culture to grow and evolve–becomes something else, like beefing, there isn’t anyone that can reel folks back in. It becomes about money–the media takes the beef and turns it into a profit-making center, and shit spins out of control. Haven’t we learned from Pac and Biggie?

The good news is that I can’t even keep up with how fast the hip-hop media justice movement is rolling now, but you can get the latest from the brilliant Jay Smooth and context and perspective from the indispensable Davey D.

As I’ve said all along, it’s not about censorship or tryiing to extract fines–that’s mosquito bite stuff to these corporations. It’s about the larger issue of media justice–getting balance, diversity, community, and progressive views back on the air. That’s the best antidote for dumbing-down and beef-instigating.

Make your voices heard this weekend.

posted by @ 8:06 am | 0 Comments

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