Mailbag: A Day Late and A Story Short- Staind Victim- Yoko Vs Ben Stein And The Big Fart- Shooting Blanks
Staind VictimJoey wrote in this past weekend wanting to know "why do you always make fun of Staind? Get over it They rock!!!" Response: Hey Joey, it is true we poke a little fun at Aaron from time to time. I personally happen to like a lot of their music, but find the "poor me" focus of the lyrics humorous. It's like our writer GREENMUSE once said, Aaron just needs a hug. Plus if you think about it, we're just giving Aaron what he really wants by making him a victim of our jokes. So it's a win win.
Yoko Vs Ben Stein And The Big FartA lot of readers try to post messages on articles but they somehow miss the little box asking for a password, which should make it obvious that some kind of registration is needed. We're sorry we had to put in the registration, but the stupid spammers with automated posting scripts made it necessary. It only takes a minute to sign up so you can comment and the comments will actually appear on the article! With that said, when people try to post comments without a username, their comments are logged. And a couple people posted comments on last week's Yoko Vs Ben Stein article that we found interesting.
Reader A wanted to let us to know that Ben Stein worked for Nixon (covered in our article) and Nixon once tried to have John Lennon deported (not in our article). While this reader didn't spell it out, he/she may have been making the point that this was the reason Yoko sued the producers of the new Ben Stein movie for using the song "Imagine" in the film. That theory is as good as any, but we'll stick to our theory that Yoko's lawyers were just bored and were looking for something to do.
Reader B was a little upset by our "big fart" analogy. He/she yelled in all caps and used a lot of naughty language, but the basic premise was that we were wrong for calling the big bang theory "the big fart;" that the theory was based on sound scientific principles. Maybe the article wasn't clear enough when it said, "So basically they take what most scientists faithfully believe; that everything started with a big cosmic fart and everything miraculously appeared from nothing, but the ID camp take it further and say that an intelligence (e.g. God) was behind it. We made the fart thing up but basically that's what the big bang boils down to. Right? Might be fun to debate that with your professor. =)" I think we answered this already in the article. One second there was nothing and then poof - it's all there! Kind of like the big nothingness farted. Kind of cool when you think about it and a very childish analogy on our part (which we could have taken further with a "what came first" joke.) Butt when you think about it, that's really what the big bang theory boils down to. (The tt was intended)
Now the Nine Inch joke controversy continues. For the record, a lot of our writers here love GNR, but like most bands they do have SOME arsholes for fans. And a couple of them couldn't let the joke last week rest and sent in angry emails. It's funny because if you substitute GNR for any boybands (or a certain America Idol) the emails read basically the same--using the identical arguments we've been hearing for 10 years from pop fans.
Before we get to addressing those arguments, I do have to say that I wasn't trying to insult any GNR fans when I posted the clarification to the joke. Maybe what was obvious to me wasn't obvious to some others. So the clarification was posted to make sure people didn't really believe the joke. No need to get GNR fans hopes up over a joke because GNR fans have been extremely loyal to Axl, when lesser fans would have given up and moved on years ago. (You can count a few of our writers in that group including me). And while we do like to mock some things here, we can't mock that loyalty.
Now to those bonehead arguments we were sent. The first one has to do with our name. It's understandable that anyone that doesn't read the site on a regular basis, and hasn't heard the explanation for the name, could be confused by it. What we love is when people try to insult us using their misunderstanding of the name. It's a predicable insult that we've heard a thousand time from what seems to be a collective simple mind. It goes like this, "Anti Music? If you hate music why do you cover it?" For one it's antiMusic. The a is always lowercase and the m is always uppercase, since the focus is on the music. Two: the name is actually perfect for a rock publication because it's inspired by the attitude of the "music establishment" of the era when rock n roll first came out. They considered it anti-music. We love rock and that's why we cover it (and cover it the way that we do.) And things haven't really changed since the advent of rock. Just look at how the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Grammys are managed. Text book establishment. Do you support either? Does either support the music you love or do they think of it as anti-music? Does our name make sense now?
The funniest part of both of these angry emails is that each person made identical arguments. The second argument is another classic example of Claymate/Boyband logic. It basically goes that we include [insert artist name here] in order to generate a lot of hits and thus make a ton of money off of it. That is wrong on all counts. If our goal was to generate a lot of hits and make a ton of money we wouldn't cover 90% of the artists that we do. It would be a lot easier to pick the handful of the current crop of "popular" celebutards and report on their every move like a lot of sites out there that seem to exist solely to profit off of the Tabloid Media Zombies that must be feed. One person that runs such a site was recently given a job as an A&R person to hopefully sign up more crap plastic "acts" for the music corporations and zombie consumption. That's exactly counter to what we are all about.
Now to the "generate" hits argument. That's another good one. Somehow if we post an article about an artist, we mystically get millions of hits from it. That's not the case at all. In fact, GNR stories do not generate that many hits; nowhere near the supposed millions that are assumed. (Bob Dylan usually generates far more) We cover them because we happen to like them and we know some regular readers do as well (aside from those that complain we cover them too much). But for the article that started this mess, it got a couple thousand hits which translated to maybe 10 cents for us. Other sites would probably make a lot more money from even that small amount of "hits" because they tend to charge far more for advertising then we do, but we're not here to earn a lot of money. Our goal is to make enough to cover our expenses. And trust me, most months we don't even do that.
The really funny part about us supposedly posting that article to make a ton of money is the fact that I had actually put together a website for a member of the band a few years ago and even hosted it for him. I didn't charge him a cent, it was done as a favor. So I could have made far more money charging him for that than we would ever make from posting articles about his band... if my intention was greed. It obviously wasn't.
Regular readers understand this site and that we do like to interject humor into a lot of "news" articles. That's done for several reasons. One is the fact that it just comes as a natural reaction to some of the stories. Another is the artist being covered might be a joke (a lot of those these days) and the third is because, while we do take a lot of music seriously, we don't take the music business and music marketing that seriously. So it's really easy to make fun of hype or publicity BS. The Day in Rock was initially started, in part, to poke fun at some tabloid sites and/or music sites that tend to take the "bs" in the music business serious. When you see a Britney story here about her doing something stupid but it's written in a serious tone, that's the joke. But a lot of the Day in Rock's focus is to keep fans (like ourselves) informed about what is going on in the world of music. Sure we joke around and include some joke artists, but overall there is a balance. But we've never covered anyone to generate "hits". If that was the case then we'd be 24/7 Britney and her ilk. Or like some of the mainstream music pubs out there that only cover what's popular.
So misunderstand us if you must. Hate us if that's what we inspire in you. But while we're not laughing all the way to the bank, we're still laughing when we're not listening to music we love. If you don't get the joke, that's fine. You don't have to read it. And most of the people that do misunderstand us haven't read our coverage beyond an article or two. This brings to mind this quote, "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance - that principle is contempt prior to investigation." Very true. Now to Axl: release the album already and give us something to really talk about! - Keavin