It costs $0 to say nothing

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Or, “Black metal dude shoots self in foot.”

Last night I was alerted to a particularly stupid post on Facebook. I can hear you, “Someone saying something stupid on Facebook? IMPOSSIBLE.” You’re yelling. Of course I can hear you. But yes, an Icelandic black metal label accidentally (or totally intentionally) went full-on anti-Semitic for what appears to be no good reason. Mystiskaos made the announcement that they would be pulling their music from “(((Bandcamp)))” due to the fees they were being charged. The triple parentheses, as you will recall, was a meme among internet Nazis used to identify and harass Jews online.

Mystiskaos could have easily just explained that they were unhappy with Bandcamp’s fee structure for labels and announced that they would be pulling music from the platform without implying some kind of shadowy Jewish conspiracy. Was this an intentional stab at Jews or a dumbass joke? Mystiskaos refused to concede in the comments of their post before catching enough flak that they just deleted the whole thing. That was probably the smartest move. Aside from, y’know, not posting this in the first place.

We live in particularly stupid time in modern history. Everyone’s basest and dumbest thoughts are captured and crystalized immediately on the world wide web. In an instant, the entire world is aware of your weak ass jabs. I don’t see that changing anytime soon so dudes in music with access to social media accounts, allow me to give you one piece of advice: it doesn’t cost anything to say nothing.

Take the time to really think about what you want to say before launching it into the ether. Maybe have your least dumb friend look it over for you. Does your post contain a slur or a coded attack on a particular group? Maybe reconsider it. Or go ahead and post it if that’s really what you mean. You’ll lose a lot of fans that refuse to spend their hard-earned dollar on bigots but you might gain a few knuckle-dragging followers with Aryan Brotherhood neck tattoos.

It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt . — Some old dude

Are you in a band and just positive that you’ve got some hilarious zingers about women and disabled people? Consider keeping that shit in the van and don’t risk bumming out your fans or potential listeners. People wanna hear your music, not your dumb jokes. Unless you’re Ghoul, of course. And you’re not. It’s hard enough to be somewhat successful with music without alienating huge swaths of potential fans with bigoted statements. Or, as the late Oderus Urungus once said, “Keep your fucking mouth shut, Dave Mustaine. Play your fucking guitar.” It’s doesn’t cost a penny to say nothing.

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