Formerly SpringBlog

Friday, March 18, 2011

Going Publicity at its best...CyberBullying at its Worse and Social mobbing at its core

If anyone has a tumblr, a twitter or even a youtube account, you might have heard about Rebecca Black and her latest... musical endeavors. There seemed to be a mass confusion about her legitimacy as an artist, and I was one of the confused. All over my blog, I'd see postings of .gifs of (badly) dancing girls, underaged driving and trending memes and tweets. Not to mention the out of key singing of the words "Friday Friday" I'd hear from friends on campus.

Finally I broke down and watched one of Rebecca Black's videos: My Jeans

At first, I didn't take it serious. Thinking, this video is like a Nickelodeon or Saturday Night music video parody (although its No Lonely Island). But apparently, Rebecca Black is an actual artist and the resulting backlash of critics, and by that I mean opinionated bloggers, has given the girl notoriety, but at a cost.

In the last week, her other Video Friday (below) has gotten over 18 million views as well as being covered by Comedy Central's comedy video commentary show Tosh.O

Not to mention people's own posted youtube video responses to her video (often scathing reviews like the one below by Internet Celeb Kingsley)

Forbes stated that the notoriety of the song is another sign of the power of social media — specifically Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr, in this instance — in the ability to create "overnight sensations" (wikipedia)

But for Rebecca Black, all the resulting attention has not been positive like in the above clip. Some people comments on her videos even ventured into threatening and cruel, sentiments stemming from a "disgust in the lack of quality of the music industry today." Maybe if Rebecca Black's angle was just to be a comedic performer like Weird Al Yankovich, or today's popular Lonely Island, people would be less critical.

As Kingsley's video title proclaimed, maybe Rebecca Black is "Overexposed", but that's not from a single person's doing. Calling this latest craze over Rebecca Black the "Black Plague" is fitting as it literally spreads from person to person like a viral disease


  1. I can't help but think about the example Shirky gave in the first chapter of his book "Here Comes Everybody" when the girl was exposed for having the woman's phone. The story got publicity because of media usage and the same thing goes for Rebecca Black. There are so many artists in various fields that have been discovered because enough people have followed them over the internet. I have not gotten sucked into this fad, nor do I care to, so I will not be watching the videos. Interesting post though!

  2. Hi-five to Caleb. That kid should be famous.

  3. These types of viral videos are just another big aspect of our popular culture. While Rebecca Black provides no real substance in her music (in my opinion) thats just part of popular culture today. I think its just the ordinary factor- this girl doesn't really have any talent but she somehow produced this god awful music video that is getting attention for all the wrong reasons- and most people find that entertaining.

  4. I remember hearing about the video last week and I just had to check it out for myself. I was not prepared for how bad it actually is. I literally was laughing and although that is horrible to laugh at a girl who is trying to be a singer, I cannot help but wonder who on Earth is allowing her to expose herself like this. I am sure that everyone is familiar with the saying that bad publicity is still publicity and any kind of publicity is good, but to what extent? Now any hope of a real singing career for this girl is gone. She has become a joke on the internet and will never be taken seriously.

  5. I recently saw a tweet that said:

    "We don't hate you because you're famous; you're famous because we hate you" - @SoDamnTrue

    That twitter is followed by almost 150,000 followers and I've already seen a "Saturday" music video parody making fun of her. She has created an acoustic video to try and tell people it wasn't auto-tuned.

    Cyber-bullying at its best...