For as long as hip-hop blogs have been in existence, rappers have expressed their displeasure with how their music—and their personal lives—are covered. Also, rappers love telling blogs to fuck off.
On Monday, following the release of his new record, "Vampire in Brooklyn," Mick Jenkins took to Twitter to blast the media for their interpretation of the song, asking, "Are y'all hip hop writers retarded?" and claiming that "the [role] of 'journalist' in the hip hop community is a joke."
If you were to catch any one of Mick's individual tweets, you'd assume he was talking about the hip-hop community at large, but his outrage was actually directed at XXL, who ran a story on the song titled "Mick Jenkins Wants to Spread Love With His New Song 'Vampire in Brooklyn.'"
In case you were wondering, the song has nothing to do with the theme of spreading love:
While Mick has every right to be upset about a major publication inaccurately covering his music, which is a common theme these days across the entire journalistic landscape, his response to the initial tweet of their story ("THIS HOW I KNOW NIGGAS DONT EVEN BE LISTENING TO THE SONG.") proves that, ironically, he didn't even read their post. Nowhere in the four, poorly-written paragraphs that make up the XXL story does the author state that the song is about "spreading love." In fact, it includes very little analysis whatsoever.
To be clear, I'm not defending XXL—their coverage of the hip-hop community over the past half-decade has been an embarassment—and I agree that, by and large, hip-hop coverage in 2017 is a fucking joke.
For Mick to clump every hip-hop journalist, blogger and publisher into the same circle, though, is unfair to all of the outstanding authors and outlets in our space and creates the perception, at least among his following, that any future coverage of his work cannot be trusted or respected unless Mick himself says (or tweets) otherwise.
Sure, there are "vampires" and "vultures" in the recording industry and in the media industry, but that goes for every industry. Instead of highlighting those who lack journalistic integrity on social media, artists should go out of their way to spotlight the countless creatives who are bucking the click-bait, gossip-heavy trend and truly pushing the culture forward.
Do I believe we are doing that here at DJBooth? Of course. But there is also great work being done at Pigeons & Planes, Okayplayer, The Ringer, GQ, NPR, and Vulture.
Don't judge us all by our worst specimen.