19 March 2011

Cyberbullying and one of the Worst Songs Ever Made

If you haven't watched a morning/ late night show, been on Yahoo!, or gone on Facebook in the last few days, then you might not know about the infamous Rebecca Black and her song "Friday." And the music video... oh the music video...

I'm dead serious about this being one of the worst songs ever made because it is. I don't mean it as an insult-- it's TRUE!  At one point she literally goes through the days of the weekend and their placement  in relation to Friday.  That's bad.  And of course the music video is awful, but that's not saying much considering the poor quality of many professionally produced videos.  Best part: the creepy 40 year old rapper who may have been court-ordered to stay away from the children, hence why he's not in any shots with them.  Ugh....

But the title of my blog mentions cyberbullying so what's my point?  Well if you watch her video actually on YouTube, you'll notice the ratings and comments have been removed.  This is why:

Okay. The song is terrible, no doubt about that, but who in this world is cruel enough to tell an eighth grader to cut herself, die, and lose weight so she'll be pretty? Is that really necessary?!  No. It's not. And I love how bullies immediately jump to the "auto-tune" insult because there are filters on her voice.  New Flash: they auto-tune EVERYONE-- Bono, Beyonce, Michael Buble, Josh Groban, Beck-- anyone who puts out a recorded album, no matter how great of a singer they are, gets the auto-tune treatment.  That's why artists can release live albums along with the originals.  Rebecca, as displayed in the video, can sing and has a pretty voice.  I think her voice is more musical theater than pop, and I honestly can't say if she'll have much of a pop career.  And yes, if you must know, I have a singing background (6 years of voice lessons and years of performing) as well as a musical background that began at age 5, so I can tell the difference between someone who can and cannot sing on key.

I realize Rebecca released the video in the hopes of beginning some kind of pop career and must expect negative criticism. However, there's a difference between declaring "Friday" a bad song and telling Rebecca that she's fat. Or to cut herself. Or to die.

Cyberbullies are such cowards because they hide behind the anonymity of usernames, fake photos, and the power of more anonymous users agreeing with them by issuing more horrible insults.  81% of teens don't think cyberbullying is a big deal. Perhaps this is because it's just the Internet... it's all digital so there's no harm.  Unfortunately people forget that the various forms of Cyberbullying cover all manner of abuses... excluding physical abuse.  Awful.  And how many teens have resorted to suicide as a result of peers posting embarrassing videos of them all over YouTube or outing them on Facebook or MySpace or uploading awful photos?  This needs to stop.

Though I can't think of anything at the moment, I'm sure at some point I've been guilty of this as well.  Please encourage others to be courteous on the Web, monitor your children to protect them, and let's get the word out about cyberbullying and the harm it causes. And hopefully we can find better tunes for Ms. Black to sing.


  1. I'm totally with you on the cyberbullying front! Thanks for posting this. I really wrestle with anonymity on the web, too. I think it's a cause for all sorts of evil and cowardice. It doesn't promote integrity and people can say whatever they want without being held accountable. I ran across this video from someone who's pro-anonymity on the web - http://blog.ted.com/2010/06/02/the_case_for_an/ - I'd be interested to know what you think if you have time to watch it. (I'll have to watch it again, too, since it's been a while since I viewed it.)

  2. Thanks! I'll take a look and let you know!