I recently got on Twitter, and have found it to be an engaging medium for information. I’m able to keep up to date with many respected Theologians, podcasters, and the occasional celebrity. I also have been following the “trends” and phenomenons that cross the Twittersphere over time.
One phenomenon that occured recently is the popularity of one Rebecca Black. The story behind her is that this average 13 year old teen recorded the single “Friday”, and released it on Youtube, creating a rise of views within days. She became known via Twitter, and was soon in the middle of a conflict between lovers and haters of “Friday”.
After a time, I finally took time and watched her famous music video. I found the video to be okay. It was a catchy song; but with all of the talk surrounding it, I thought there would be more to it than an average music video, at least by my standards. But then I read a fascinating commentary on the situation by a Social Media executive, Pete Shankman:
There’s a young woman — perhaps you’ve heard of her — currently climbing the YouTube charts with a song about the days of the week, specifically, “Friday.” There’s also another song on YouTube rocketing to the top with a bullet, this one about a pair of jeans.
When I was a kid, we listened to songs about days of the week and clothing, and it was called Sesame Street, not “mainstream entertainment.”
Welcome to the age of mediocrity, where anyone with a computer, a video camera, and a few thousand dollars for production can be considered the next big thing.
But as sad as that is, what does it say about us as a society?
The writer believes that Black’s work to be a sign of the change in quality and substance in art, where any one man can make himself famous by posting a video. All you have to do is make you laugh, or be shocked. Is this actually true?
The author is right in saying that if all content is allowed, that many mediocre artists will become popular. But that also means that for an artist to become truly great, they must do fantastically. Many of the videos of our time have only travelled for a short time. They became One-Hit Wonders (or should I say One-ders?) overnight. But after that, what happens to them? They disappear. It is in the long-run that an artist will succeed.
As I mentioned earlier, the author also thought that this video shows how art is being changed, and losing it’s quality. He is right in that. It only makes sense that if one isn’t taught and introduced to quality art, than he will appreciate the mediocre pieces of art that are produced, and feeding those who need to work harder at their medium. So, if these critics want there to be better art, they should help us and introduce us to great art, while also comprehending that each and every one of us has our own opinion.
Overall, Rebecca Black is simply a one-hit wonder who will pass in time. However, her rise to popularity is a great illustration of a minor problem with modern culture.
Now, please note that I don’t hate Rebecca Black. I do think what she did is a pretty cool oppurtunity. I just don’t think it deserves the coverage it has received.