Fans Angry At MTV Over Lack of Rhode Island Tragedy Coverage.

02-24-03 antiGUY
While the major news networks were devoting most of their programming time to covering the tragic fire in Rhode Island that claimed the lives of 97 individuals and injured almost 200 others, coverage of the tragedy was curiously absent from the airwaves at MTV. This has some rock fans furious at the cable network and one force in the rock community hit especially hard by Thursday’s tragedy, Metal-Sludge.com, isn’t letting them get away with it silently. 

The often outspoken writers at Metal-Sludge are taking the so-called “music” television network to task over their lack of coverage. In a rant Posted to that site today, Sludge angrily points out that MTV has interrupted their normally scheduled programming, (The Real World marathons, Road Rules marathons, Jackass etc), for extensive coverage of the deaths of Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopez and Run DMC’s Jam Master Jay. Sludge askes, “how many people reading this have learned every last detail about Tupac Shakur & Biggie Smalls (Notorious B.I.G.) lives & deaths? Once again, both were horrible tragedies along with the recent loss of Jam Master Jay. But how is it that these "musical" losses got continuous coverage day & night, and still to this day they get entire shows dedicated in their memory? We all know that Ratt, Great White, Slaughter and Alice in Chains are far removed from their heyday, but weren't RUN DMC as well? Does memory serve us right that there was MAJORMTV coverage of Jam Master Jays[sic] death only a few months ago? This was a solid decade plus since they had rotation on your channels! Does anyone else see a pattern here? Does MTV care about their roots? ---- no!” 

Metal-Sludge also points out that people like Fred Durst, normally someone who is a big target at their site (ours too) put out a heartfelt statement following the tragedy and even talked about organizing a benefit for the families of those lost. But aside from a few MTV News” reports, coverage on the network proceeded as normal. 

MTV’s Iann Robinson reportedly sent Metal-Sludge an email defending the station's lack of coverage. In his two emails he said in part, …”you're kind of off the track about MTV's coverage of the Great White tragedy. Now before you get mad at me I'm not defending MTV, or saying that you're not  right about MTV's lack of attention to metal and real rock, because you are right--it does suck a lot of the time. However MTV isn't some unfeeling ogre that doesn't care about suffering unless it's genre-specific. When the Great White tragedy happened we were one of the first outlets to report on it on air, we Posted two or three stories (as details became available) on line and we're planning a half hour show on not only the tragedy (including talking to those that were there) but also on how to deal with bad things when they happen in clubs, how to check out where the exits are and so forth. Just to add, this show has been in production for about a week, so MTV is not scrambleing to make up for anything, we just want kids to be safe no matter what they do or who the listen to. As far as slagging us for not staying on it every hour, name us a media outlet that did.”

“I guess where things get muddy is that MTV (which supposedly stands for Music Television) only allows a certain amount of time for news to be on air. The folks covering it ever half hour are news channels, MTV isn't a news channel and even when we here in news want to do something it's hard to get more than a few moments here and there.” 

It appears Mr. Robinson has forgotten MTV’s coverage of Lisa “Left-Eye” and Jam Master Jay and he must have missed CNN, MSNBC and Fox News Networks extensive coverage of the tragedy. 

It does appear that the station may indeed be out of touch. 

You can read the Metal-Sludge rant by clicking here and read the responses by clicking here

Because of rapid development of news related to the Rhode Island tragedy we have set up a news hub for related stories. .



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