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Letter from the Billboard's Editor: Focus on the Music

Posted by: Jason Tate (01/07/14)
This letter from the editor recently posted by Billboard's Bill Werde is a great read. It addresses, amongst other things, how many in the media don't know how to cover music in general if there's no controversy.
And our conversation basically amounted to: “It was boring because nothing controversial happened.” He expected to shrink coverage of the AMAs. Before I went to sleep that night, I was told that none of the shows planning longer segments would be doing them. It's a sign of the times that celebrity trumps actual culture on TV. If Miley Cyrus cavorts with a foam finger, I’m a talking head on the topic for the next three months. If she does a superb job singing a great song like “Wrecking Ball,” producers start looking for B-roll of the Kardashians.

This isn’t a new phenomenon. But that doesn’t mean we must endure it in silence.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 11 of 11
09:06 PM on 01/07/14
#2
*dannyg*
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More often than not the most popular articles on this site have absolutely nothing to do with music, but are discussing musicians involved in some controversy. The number of articles solely focusing on music on the site obviously FAR outweigh these "controversial articles", but people flock to controversy. If there's a car wreck on the side of the road, we're all gonna take at least a glance...
09:13 PM on 01/07/14
#3
j4callen
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Bill is great. All music sites need to take notice.
09:21 PM on 01/07/14
#4
Jason Tate
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More often than not the most popular articles on this site have absolutely nothing to do with music, but are discussing musicians involved in some controversy. The number of articles solely focusing on music on the site obviously FAR outweigh these "controversial articles", but people flock to controversy. If there's a car wreck on the side of the road, we're all gonna take at least a glance...
I just posted the biggest stories of last year, and only one I would say fits into that category. While there are definitely some of those splintered into the most popular articles of the year ... I was pleased when looking at the data from last year to see how many purely music based stories were in the top ranks.
10:45 PM on 01/07/14
#5
kianacarly
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idk I like a nice mix. I love and appreciate those live performances that just blow me away and later become iconic. I still regularly go on youtube to watch my favorite artists just blowing it out of the water during certain performances. However, with trashy shows like the VMAs, I usually watch for the entertainment and the potential trainwreck factor. I remember when Miley did her VMA performance I texted my friend and said, "This is why I watch the VMAs!" That's not exactly a prestigious awards show though. I think my issue with some award shows is not that I want them to be controversial, but that a lot of time the performances are just meh. These current batch of pop stars can't really perform live all that well. They lack the talent and presence so it's all just boring. I wish more current artists focused on their stage shows.


I do agree though that I wish the good performances got more coverage. I thought Christina did really well at the AMAs and I wish it had gotten more coverage than Katy's controversial performance
01:03 AM on 01/08/14
#6
kianacarly
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Also Bill is leaving Billboard wat
01:06 AM on 01/08/14
#7
suicidalmoose
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On one hand, mass audiences are to blame since the reason why journalists and producers focus on this kind of crap is because it has ratings, and because sharing opinions about a good trainwreck seems somehow more entertaining than talking about music.

On the other hand, journalists and producers should aim for something more than ratings alone.

Thank god there's the Internet to save us all
06:14 AM on 01/08/14
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caveBEAR
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06:26 AM on 01/08/14
#9
*dannyg*
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I just posted the biggest stories of last year, and only one I would say fits into that category. While there are definitely some of those splintered into the most popular articles of the year ... I was pleased when looking at the data from last year to see how many purely music based stories were in the top ranks.
Thanks for showing me that, I'm glad to see that as well!
10:32 AM on 01/08/14
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Sadly Bill announced his departure from Billboard last night. He's been a huge supporter of my music career and he alone jump started my old band (Side by Side) and just recently my new band, Cairo Fire (www.cairofire.com) by naming us one of the top 5 unsigned bands right now with Billboard Magazine. The time I've spent with him, he's an amazing guy that supports the art of music in any way possible.
10:42 AM on 01/08/14
bowbzzz
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More often than not the most popular articles on this site have absolutely nothing to do with music, but are discussing musicians involved in some controversy. The number of articles solely focusing on music on the site obviously FAR outweigh these "controversial articles", but people flock to controversy. If there's a car wreck on the side of the road, we're all gonna take at least a glance...
Every person that says "why is this news?" on this site should read this.
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