Internet’s Cancel Culture and Intolerance make the Content Industry vulnerable

How does the Internet’s Cancel culture and intolerance leave no hope for the content industry?

Do you agree that we learn as we grow? If yes, then you will agree that we make mistakes, we apologize and move forward with lessons and learnings from the mistakes. But what if someone decides to threaten you, abandon you and completely strip you of your dignity, certainly because you have made a mistake? Well, that’s the Internet’s cancel culture and intolerance for you.

You make a mistake (and at times, when you don’t even make a mistake and it’s just that your ideas are not likable to the larger audience), and an uncountable nameless, faceless people will run after you, to create a life and death situation. The adversities can include indecent things from sexist slurs to abuses to death threats to breaching privacy and leaking private information to whatnot.

While there are many cases I can cite to support this, let’s start with the most recent one. “Recently there was controversy regarding MC Kode aka Aditya Tiwari’s, a battle rapper from Delhi whose 4-5-year-old video (when he was 17 years old) of him saying anti-hindu words resurfaced. This is a video for which he had already apologized yet people from all over India started sending him hate messages and death threats, someone placed a bounty on his head. He was made to remove all his tracks, his work collaborations were cancelled, and this matter grew to such an extent that there were goons hunting out for him. Later, he posted somewhat of a suicide note in the light of this incident and has been missing since then. It’s been more than five days now and there’s no sign of him.” tells Ashant Anu, a Rapper.

Adding to this, Ashant Anu said, “How can you blame someone now, for something they have said 4-5 years ago as a teenager, for which he had already apologized? Plus this outrage is basically by the followers of a very strict ideology and have been seen banishing anyone who doesn’t fit their norms.”

And well, “can we not give a person, little space to unlearn and improve, as an artist? Cancelling them won’t change minds, exchanging dialogues might.” – Anshika Singh

So, basically, we don’t know where MC Kode is, and it’s no one but the internet’s culture and intolerance that is supposed to be blamed for the same. MC Kode had made an apology several times on the internet after he realized the wrong he had said, what else can a person do for a mistake they have done years back? And can punishment to any mistake be so adverse as to creating a life and death situation for a person. Well, this is not me but the other content creators asking, who are deeply affected by such instances. If this can happen to MC Kode, to Munawar Faruqui, to Agrima Joshua etc., they see it coming to them, to every artist, sooner or later.

Also read: Who is Mehul Choksi & why are we talking about him?

How Internet’s Cancel culture and intolerance leaves no hope for the content industry

“Cancel culture is plain stupid. I suppose the people behind the cancel culture do it only for getting a sense of approval. They don’t have any real purpose, not behind their campaigns, not in their lives, no purpose at all. Now whether it is from a political point of view or in general, they just want to feel a sense of approval by cancelling someone.” – Dragon M, a writer, rapper and event producer.

With the perspective of someone who organises events, he added, “Cancel culture is toxic and murderous. Having said that, it can not only end someone’s career but can also kill them as well, if not physically, then perhaps mentally. As an event producer, it puts us in unnecessary pressure. Sometimes we have to limit the type of content our artists are going to perform live. That can sometimes take away the essence of the artform to be honest. Take battle rap for an example, I don’t think I will be able to organise them for a few years now. And even if I do, it might not be as it were before, as battle rap should be. Or even if I somehow find a way to organise a battle rap in its truest form, I’ll have to ban all sorts of recording for the show and keep it to the battle arena only. I am not supporting what’s offensive, but I can’t help those who question the content of an art, without knowing the nature of that artform.” Dragon M has been curating events of various art genres for many years now and the internet’s cancel culture does disappoint him the most.

“Whether it was the outrage against “Padmavat” release or any “Comedian” cracking a joke, the mob literally took the laws in their hands by vandalizing theatres and attacking the “Habitat”. A stand comedian, Munawar Faruqui was jailed for cracking a joke for which he had already apologized multiple times, in fact, took down the video. Shouldn’t we be a little compassionate while cancelling out someone, for example, if you look at the history of someone and then look at how they respond when confronted?” – Anshika Singh, a digital creator.

Adding what cancel culture makes her feel as a creator, she said, “Everyone is getting cancelled for something or the other. I personally don’t prefer using Twitter as I might get cancelled out for breathing. People are literally digging down for someone’s oldest piece of work and then outraging against that. Imagine if we had a tracker for everything we had said and done. Then? When I look back to my memory of 2016 on Facebook, it’s nothing less than an embarrassment for myself. Anyway, whilst I might disagree with what you are saying, I will defend your right to say it. Cancel culture only allows one side to speak, freedom of speech allows all sides to speak.”

Internet’s cancel culture doesn’t normalize unlearning and relearning

In a nutshell, “Learning, Unlearning and Relearning”, is not something that the internet’s uncultured people have learnt. Think, if a person is brutally called out for a mistake they did, will they feel encouraged for the process of unlearning and relearning. Ofcourse, one should be held responsible for their words and actions, and there is a legal way of doing that. What good does a group of people do by making a person feel unworthy and stripping them of their dignity for not knowing something? What can be the cost of not knowing something for an artist? Their peace, their art, their dignity, their life?

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Ishika Aggarwal

Can write, shoot, listen, talk and procrastinate. A feminist at heart, Ishika is an avid writer and multimedia person who loves talking about women, realism, and society. When not working she is either seen watching films or making one.
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