Rian’s Rants: The Internet – A PR Nightmare

As much as I hate to admit it, the first thing I do every morning when I wake up is check Facebook. Sometimes I multitask and am able to brush my teeth at the same time while still scrolling through my newsfeed, and occasionally something interesting will catch my attention. Today was one of those occasions.

On Saturday, June 13th, Lambgoat posted that Troy Wilson, bassist from deathcore group Gift Giver, left the group in a heated brawl that left him stranded on the side of the highway in our home and native land. The reason for this altercation was the fact that Troy said that the group were homophobes, and constantly belittled him about being a homosexual by criticizing him, his boyfriend, and the gay community in general. The band has their own version of how the fight happened, but needless to say, I think their career is pretty much over.

I read a few comments and saw that some of my Facebook friends, who are musicians and/or involved in the music industry in some way, had expressed their opinions on the matter, ranging from comments about the band’s music to personal attacks. However, one of my Facebook friends pointed out that regardless of who’s telling the truth, it’s a media frenzy; because of social media, this negative controversy can very well end their career.

Now, more than ever before, it is so easy to be branded as someone who is opposed to homosexuality, or transgender, or any sort of human quality that as soon as you post something that seems a tad dodgy regarding the rights or likeness of anyone in this community, you become the target of hate from all corners of the Internet. I’m not defending Gift Giver in the slightest, just because it really doesn’t matter at this point. There are people out there that still, in 2015, just don’t get it. We’ve come so far as a society to be accepting of other people’s sexuality, and it’s honestly one of the most amazing things about humanity at this point in time as part of our social construct. Being comfortable with yourself, and who you are attracted to, is nothing to be ashamed about, and when people still lash out at others for being themselves, it’s just disgraceful. Most intellectuals would agree with me I think.

From a business standpoint (because that’s what I like to talk about), this band is probably completely fubar. It’s a label’s worst nightmare in this day and age. The spotlight is on these artists at all times, and when something this controversial happens, it’s nearly impossible to recover from. Well, except for the infamous Radke But that’s a rant for a whole other day. My point is that if you are an established, professional, touring act, you have to be super careful because you never know who’s filming you, or paying attention to what you say. If you have personal beliefs that are outside of what’s socially acceptable in our current state, remember what your mother told you when you were a kid: if you don’t have anything nice to say about someone, don’t say it at all.

If Troy is telling the truth about what happened, I commend him for sticking up for himself and his rights and morals. He did the right thing by leaving that group as fast as possible, even if it meant getting left on the side of the highway in the middle of Canada.

Read the full article about Troy and Gift Giver here.

Written by Rian Cunningham

About Rian Cunningham 40 Articles
Rian Cunningham has been singing since he was a toddler, and have since been in multiple musicals and bands alike. He's been studying music all his life, playing bass, singing, organizing shows, developing sharp management skills, and more. He's been active in developing himself as a musician over the last five years by exploring multiple genres of music from jazz, pop, and metal, all the way to rock and roll. He is currently enrolled in the Music Industry Arts & Performance program at Centennial College in Toronto for Bass Guitar, and he has received the Dean’s Award for Entrepreneurship and Innovation in his program for being the most dedicated student in forwarding his career as a professional musician and artist.

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