Tuesday, August 27, 2013

You Are Getting Played

Apparently, an "entertainer" did something that a bunch of people found offensive this week.  I didn't witness the act myself, but there sure was a lot of talk about it yesterday on Twitter, blogs, the TV morning shows and radio talk shows.  Everywhere you turned, you had parents, family advocates and even other "entertainers" expressing their disgust and outrage that the "children of America had to be exposed to that smut."  Those comments were accompanied by calls for public apologies from both the "entertainer" and the network that aired the show.

But while everyone, everywhere is up in arms about this, said "entertainer" and that network couldn't be any happier.  You see, all of those upset folks have fallen into the same trap that has been employed by so many other charlatans--any publicity is good publicity.  As we are seeing now, there is an entire cottage industry built around this type of boorish behavior.

How many people do you think--having missed the original airing--will make sure to tune in for the multitude of replays of the show on that network?  And that viewing drives ratings--which sells advertising--which makes money.  And how many people who missed the original airing--or who just want to "double check" what they did see the first time--went to Youtube to view the "performance" again?  That drives up page views--which sells advertising--which makes money.  And how many closet pedophiles  heard about or saw the peformance and downloaded a song or an album or a video or bought a concert ticket of that "entertainer" hoping for a similar cheap thrill?  That puts money in the pockets of the entertainer, the agent, and the record label.  And how many people will want to know the next move from that entertainer--and will log on to sites like TMZ or Perez Hilton or Entertainment Tonight or will tune into Good Morning America?  You can hear the cash registers ringing left and right.

While it might make you feel better to call a talk show and vent your frustration and concern about "kids and society today", you are just playing into the hands of these people.  You know what would have been an even more powerful response to this "performance"?  Silence.  What if the entire arena had just done nothing when that act ended?  No cheers, no boos--just deafening quiet.  Do you think the "entertainer" would have received a very clear message?  And I can guarantee the calls between agents and promoters would have been in full-blown panic mode if the Monday morning shows spent their entire time talking about Syria gassing its own people and radiation-contaminated water leaking from the Fukushima power plant into the Pacific Ocean--all the while album sales remained stagnant.

Just remember the next time an "entertainer" goes "way over the line": a provocateur who doesn't provoke anyone just looks like a fool.

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