The following is a conversation that I had with another YouTubee, regarding the nonsensical use of a song with blatantly explicit lyrics within the first few seconds when attempting to spread the word of why weed legalization should be considered. My foremost argument was that the attempt should have been made to reach the widest possible audience, not merely rationalize that people should just disregard offensive bits.
The video (here, note the very NSFW lyrics at the immediate beginning) about the rationale to legalize weed is a decent message and well-made conversation, but the opening song makes the potential for spreading to relatives and cow-orkers dramatically lesser due specifically to the opener.
It’s not something I’d rather forward to my grandmother, or post on here as I try to keep things as clean as possible. Further, it is my assertion that the vast majority of swearing is purely unnecessary — that emphatic statements can be made without using language many regard as woefully inappropriate.
Keep in mind that YouTube comments have a maximum character limit of 500, so retorts are naturally brief. Words inside [brackets] are corrections in my original post to clarify.
ablestmage – Video would be loads better if the opening song didn’t have swearing. It is now not sharable with friends and family due to the obscenity at the very beginning. Nice.
casemon – Maybe you should get friends and family that are adults and can handle someone else’s expression without feeling they’re being violated?
ablestmage – The idea when spreading a message is to appeal to as many people as possible, not limit your audience. There are millions of Americans who will not tolerate swearing [in] music, and will be automatically turned off from any message that contains swearing because it is utter insensitivity from the very beginning. The idea is to appeal to EVERYONE, not just people you consider adults. Why limit your audience like that?
casemon – You say “everyone” but then discount use of aggressive language as a means of expression. This is the very core of hypocrisy (hip-hopcrisy?) Closed-minded people who “turn off” from a few uncouth words, imposing outdated morality, are the very closed-minded people who got us into this. I don’t care for the music either, but as a thinking person, I choose to not let it tarnish the core message. Otherwise I’d be apart of the problem, not the solution. Don’t mistake the forest from the trees.
ablestmage – I don’t discount it as a means of expression. I discount it as a means of appealing to the widest audience possible. The idea is to get the message out to both the open AND the close-minded people. Insulting your audience’s standards is not conducive to getting a message out, and may inadvertently re-inforce the idea that drug legalization propontents lack common decency — regardless of whether the message is legitimate. Simply excising the offensive language solves the entire problem.
casemon – Cow-towing to a self-imposed moral center will get us nowhere. I contend such is the very same thinking that got us here (your rebuttal?) What you’re suggesting is censorship; voluntary, but still damaging. I don’t know where to begin to explain how many ways that is harmful. What I do know is supporting insular, xenophobic thinking, that serves to distract from the message, will not help us move forward. Perhaps you can channel your conviction into creating a pro-pot video for the dainties?
ablestmage – Catering to the sensibilities of your audience is fundamental in the essence of effective message dispersal. If you are trying to spread the message about the benefits of democracy to an Islamic nation, you don’t make a video with the opening song bellowing, “Mohammad was a douc[h]ebag.” It’s just common sense. You’re not sacrificing your journalistic integrity by being cognizant of your intended audience’s sensitivity — you’ll have their rapt attention if you acknowledge it.
casemon – Ok, so let’s follow your point (as you ignore the ones I make). How is the opening music anti-american as you suggest? I believe tagging other people’s videos with your own bumper music / logo is stupid, but surely this content is available without the uploader’s tag, unbranded? Why not find those and send those links to your sensitive friends? Or again, why not make your own? This is YouTube. Basically why not be a part of the solution that you so covet?
ablestmage – I never suggested the opening music was anti-American. I said there are millions of Americans, who could certainly do well to hear this message, which also find curse-filled lyrics unacceptable. Part of effective message dissemination is establishing credibility as a messenger, and by insulting the audience you’re trying to communicate with is detrimental to that goal. The argument is not with the branding, the style, the music genre, the artist, or the beat — it’s the explicit lyrics.
casemon – Ok, I’ll bite. So how does your example about sending an anti-Muhammad message to a Islamic nation compare here, if you’re not suggesting the opening music to this video is anti-american? From where I’m sitting, you’re using double-speak; draw contentious inferences to flame the fire, but then deny doing so and try to shift focus away. Poison-pill. I understand your views on marketing strategy, you needn’t repeat them. Perhaps instead you can rather rebute the points I’ve made? Perhaps not!
ablestmage – The example applies because the original message (of democracy) has nothing to do with the alleged douchebaggery of Mohammad. Including an offensively-worded song as an opener for a message you want to speak to people who would naturally find offense with the song, is just nonsensical. What other points in particular have you made, other than misunderstand mine?
casemon – The music and the video do speak to a similar venue; that we’re no longer a republic “of for & by the people”. You’ve made your point, the music conflicts with your _personal_ views on what is offensive; “nice”. I do disagree the uploader should change for you or the supposed millions you apparently have no qualms speaking for. I know there are just as many who have no problem with it. But if you can’t read, don’t get snarky with me for giving you a chance to not sound like a dinosaur…
ablestmage – It is not my opinion that they are offensive — I can dismiss them just fine. My remark is that a very large potential audience exists who would find the opening lyrics offensive. In order to better communicate a message to a wider group of people, a peaceable form of speaking should be utilized, instead the sort that is widely known to elicit irritation, regardless of whether that irritation is well-founded. In order to convince dinosaurs of a valid point, you’ve got to speak dinosaur.
casemon – So many assumptions, so little humility; amazing! Twist & bend what you’ve said as being something else, go ahead. Ignore the points I’ve challenged you on, no problem. I understand such is easier than _actually considering_ an alternate view; best to just repeat yourself and accuse anyone who questions who as being simple (oh the irony!) I _was_ curious as to why you don’t do a better job yourself, rather than criticize others… but your attitude speaks for itself. Hope that works for you! As of press time, there were no further replies. Should there be any more, I will append them.
ablestmage – The reason I’ve been repeating the same thesis is because you keep trying to derail the original argument and make it about unrelated side issues. Sure, feel absolutely free to have grand, exquisite, lightning-spooge victory on the side points all you like. I haven’t bent anything — I’ve repeated my original argument continuously. My criticism is constructive and makes the potential audience larger, thereby increasing its effectiveness.. I *do* a better job, and I’m passing along tips.
casemon – It’s ok, people lie to themselves every day. Don’t feel you have to justify yourself (unless you want to).
ablestmage – Bothering to justify oneself is evidence of credibility. If you prefer not to justify yourself, I’m sure your intended audience will have their tomatoes ready.