In a world run by opinions, technology has made it more efficient for the average Joe to have a voice, let alone have a platform. The diffusion of technology and social media has allowed us to have more of an impact or influence on those around us.
Though we’ve managed to generate and build platforms tailored to whom we are, and are underlying purpose, we’ve neglected to take pride in something America has long been disconnected from, and that’s making sure truthful information is the foundation for growth. What are the long term effects of misinformation? One is the point of being first, not being correct, Denzel Washington summed it up best,” If you read the newspaper, you are misinformed, if you don’t read it.. you are misinformed.
He went on saying that the media puts forth more effort in trying to compete to get the news out the fastest, versus focusing on the facts. In many situations , we have heard of the media swaying the opinions of the people, using false narratives to paint a picture for people’s entertainment. All while at the same time damaging the reputation of those individuals in the crossfire.
We’ve learned how sick the downside of bad media can be, especially when it involves high profile figures, and their families. What is it about the false narratives and agendas of the media that attracts us? Is it entertainment? Shock value?. As humans we fail to realize that these high profile individuals are human beings. The most prevalent one of recent has to be of the sickest representation of journalism in a long time.The reporting of Kobe Bryant’s passing hit the world with no real solid facts, leaving the world hurt and confuses. TMZ broke the news without even giving LA County officials a chance to break the news to his family. Though TMZ has been known to steer straight from moral conduct, this has to be one of their darkest hours. They were also other news platforms that ran various outlets of misinformation during its breaking which made it so much harder to deal with it. As a journalist you would think that would have all the facts on someone like Kobe Bryant. It goes to show you how twisted people are when it comes to the livelihood of others. The name of the game is to be first who cares about the truth.
In hip hop, it is important to have journalists and creatives who have great opinions that are bold, powerful and meaningful that stirs conversations. It is also important to have great researchers so they can report the truth and be talked about as a credible source who always puts out the truth, not just a source who gets a story out before everyone else; as that has no worth in the long run. Putting in the effort to be pure, seen and not heard will last longer and gain a lot more respect. It seems like blogs, especially podcasts are growing now more than ever and these platforms are used mostly for creative writing and opinionated conversations.
Regardless of what it is used for, It is important to say what you mean and mean what you say. This world has turned into a sensitive one and if someone is expressing their opinion it is important to fully express that, stand firm on the beliefs and be transparent so others won’t leave with false narratives. As a fan and a consumer, you have Twitter which is filled with the most uneducated, ignorant, hilarious and highly intelligent people. Twitter is a free for all space so it is very important to be aware of certain statements, statistics, and news (social, political, entertainment) that is posted in efforts to get exposure or go viral. Fact checking is the smartest thing someone on Twitter can do and it only takes a few seconds to do so.
In a world where you have the passionate journalist and the unknown fan on Twitter looking to go viral it can be difficult for the true artists to get their shine and respect. Hip hop, Black culture, media and journalism always went hand and hand and continues to transform and create greatness. Thinking about the evolution from some of the most popular outlets like, The Source, Complex Vibe, The Fader, and now some of the best music journalists/creatives like Jinx, Elliot Wilson, Miss Info, Combat Jack, Scottie Beam, Speedy Norman,and Gia Peppers… I have faith that the Hip Hop culture can see through the fake and keep acknowledging the real.
This article was a joint collab with The Fitted Cap. Follow them on IG: @tea.and.tobacco_podcast