Prowling the Airwaves and the Underground for the best in EDM

Teachings of Mama Hound

What Is Rape Culture? Why You Should Care.

I’d been meaning to write a meaty article fully detailing why I am so vehemently anti-slut shaming, anti sexist bullshit, and very viciously feminist. However, before doing so a friend shared an article that much more eloquently summed up what I had wanted to say. In an article entitled ‘What Is Rape Culture’, several Buzzfeed staff members deconstruct and eloquently elucidate the true meaning of ‘rape culture’ and the various components the can be seen in society today.

Many facets of what is covered in this piece are highly applicable to stigma and attitudes present in the attitudes and perceptions at play at major festivals, clubs, raves, and beyond. Recently, one writer of Daily Beat, identified only as ‘Gianna’ wrote about ‘how to be classy‘ and specifically accused the unidentified woman as dressing like a “cheap whore”.  The article from Buzzfeed addresses this kind of ideology directly and succinctly:

“The old metaphor is that women who dress provocatively are the same as homeowners who don’t lock their doors at night. But this argument only further reduces women to objects and asks them to be responsible for preventing their own rape.”-Buzzfeed

In other situations, I’ve found myself offended by some of the content shared by people I consider to be friends. In one such instance, an image of a puppy with the caption jokingly stating that ‘roofies were high in vitamin C’. As someone who has had friends who have been victims of date rape (via drugs) and has direct experience with it, I was incredibly offended. Instead of an apology or a polite resolution, I was met with a “get over it” response typical of rape culture acceptance.

Essentially, I’d been hit with a trigger in the form of a “harmless” rape joke.

“Beneath the debate over whether rape jokes can be funny is the larger question of whether it’s healthy for a society to laugh at the idea of sexual violence.”-Buzzfeed

On a personal aside, I have been that girl. I’ve been the girl who wakes up in an unfamiliar bed with no memory of the night before. I’ve had to scramble terrified into a cab in early hours of the morning frantically texting friends for help to figure out how I got there. I’ve mysteriously lost all memory after only a few drinks, and fearfully wondered if anything had happened against my will while I was compromised. This has happened more than once.  I can tell you, there was nothing funny about it.

Someone reading this might think:

  • “Maybe if you didn’t dress like a whore it wouldn’t have happened.”
  • “Maybe if you didn’t drink so much it wouldn’t have happened.”
  • “Maybe if your friends had taken better care of you / been there it wouldn’t have happened.”
  • “Maybe if you hadn’t stayed out so late it wouldn’t have happened.”

This brings us to what bothers me the most:  we should view rape not as an act brought upon oneself, but as something perpetrated by another.

“Rape culture is telling girls and women to be careful about what you wear, how you wear it, how you carry yourself, where you walk, when you walk there, with whom you walk, whom you trust, what you do, where you do it, with whom you do it, what you drink, how much you drink, whether you make eye contact, if you’re alone, if you’re with a stranger, if you’re in a group, if you’re in a group of strangers, if it’s dark, if the area is unfamiliar, if you’re carrying something, how you carry it, what kind of shoes you’re wearing in case you have to run, what kind of purse you carry, what jewelry you wear, what time it is, what street it is, what environment it is, how many people you sleep with, what kind of people you sleep with, who your friends are, to whom you give your number, who’s around when the delivery guy comes, to get an apartment where you can see who’s at the door before they can see you, to check before you open the door to the delivery guy, to own a dog or a dog-sound-making machine, to get a roommate, to take self-defense, to always be alert always pay attention always watch your back always be aware of your surroundings and never let your guard down for a moment lest you be sexually assaulted and if you are and didn’t follow all the rules it’s your fault.”-Shakesville

I’m sick of reading articles about “how to be classy” or why I should “see the humor” in rape jokes.

The articles cited above are well worth the read, ad I highly recommend everyone read them.

The Buzzfeed article can be found here, and the Shakesville piece here.


Opinions Are Like Assholes

When a blogger, any blogger chooses to put a piece of themselves into an editorial piece, you open yourself up to a plethora of opinions.

A while back, one of my pieces addressing a small demographic found within the  ‘club-goer’ community received a split reaction: Some applauded the article for what it was, while others vehemently retaliated. As a blogger, I understand that what I write will incite a reaction; I’d rather you douse me in emotional gasoline and set me ablaze then say nothing.

One acquaintance messaged me privately on Facebook to discuss the dirge of negativity I was met with one fine Saturday morning…weeks if not months after said article was posted:

“U just seem a lil upset about twitter attacks & feeling the need to defend urself. Addressing “scene” type subject matter makes any handle extremely susceptible to twitter haters.”- I am choosing not to disclose this person’s name.

He told me to ignore haters and spent more energy developing my craft and let the talk die down. Many called my article a ‘pack of lies’ and that I was uneducated, inexperienced, and some even called me dumb. Emails sent to my account called me a ‘dirty drug addict’ and a ‘whore’, while massively long tweets called me out for being misinformed for sharing my opinion.

“…editorials & scene stuff makes one more susceptible to personal attacks. Sticking to music not as much. It’s just up to u whether u wanna weather that storm. I certainly don’t but that’s why I don’t write.”- I am choosing not to disclose this person’s name.

However, despite all the brute negativity, that opinion I shared rang true with many, and I began seeing an influx of ‘thank you’ and ‘I agree’ messages flowing in. It was a rough morning to be snarled and hissed at for the duration of a day, but when the sun had set and I cracked myself a beer…my little firestorm of a post had generated nearly 300 views. Three. Hundred. In a day.

What I have to say might not always resonate with others, but I’ve decided I’d rather weather a monsoon of hatred if it means what I write strikes others in an emotional and tangible way. This may have been my first ‘Twitter war’ where what I had to say left me vulnerable to countless declarations of both hate and love, but it will most assuredly not be my last!


Where I Stand on The Electric Zoo Victims; An Apology

Within the first few seconds of receiving news that Sunday of Electric Zoo was cancelled, I was devastated. Distraught initially because I would once again be missing Armin and would not be seeing Vicetone. And like many, I took my fury to Twitter, lashing out angrily to every corner of the internet, blaming irresponsible people for single-handedly ruining my weekend.

That was incredibly selfish, and I’m sorry.

There were multiple factors in the cancellation of Electric Zoo, the most prominent and most reported being the two deaths due to drug overdoses. However these were not the only problems present at the festival itself. As I go on to list these issues I want to make it VERY VERY CLEAR that I am of the opinion that it was in NO WAY Made Event of the Electric Zoo 2013 officials’ fault for these problems:

  • Security was not sufficient.
  • Medical staff, while available did not check surrounding areas for fallen ravers.
  • Certain volunteers / staff not only endorsed frequent ‘molly’ use, there was an incidence of a ‘we want molly’ tip sign at one water station.
For example, why these two were not immediately ejected from the premises for endorsing illegal drug use is FAR beyond me (found by @RJM_PLUR)

For example, why these two were not immediately ejected from the premises for endorsing illegal drug use is FAR beyond me (found by @RJM_PLUR)

 

  • Certain ‘rented’ security staff was not only discourteous, they made unwanted flirtatious advances on female ravers such as myself.
  • Apparel promoting drugs use was permitted at the event, only contributing to the ‘hype’ of drug use.
  • Excessive shoving and general misconduct from attendees exacerbated already dehydrated ravers, only adding tension to already negative situations of crowding and overheating.
  • Songs about ‘Molly’ including Tyga’s ‘Molly’ and Cedric Gervais’ hit song were dropped, only adding to unnecessary hype of the drug

Again, none of these are Made Event of Electric Zoo’s fault. It is important to note that in 2012 Electric Zoo had no deaths. As pop stars and rappers have begun to bolster the hype of drug use and wild partying, our festivals are getting inundated with unsafe expectations that tons of drugs and drinking are required to make the EDM scene enjoyable…encouraging newcomers to create their own ‘Project X‘ at shows like EDC and EZOO instead of simply coming to enjoy the music.

Spoiler Alert; You Don’t Need Drugs To Enjoy EDM

DJ’s such as Bassnectar and Brillz have released official statements about the situation, pleading with their fanbase to be safe and take accountability for their actions. Videos such as the the vimeo clip featuring major acts like Kaskade, Tommie Sunshine, Steve Aoki, and A-Trak have been circulated begging those who do partake in substances to be extremely careful of their actions.


Actions such as taking “6 hits of molly”, leaving a friend by themselves if you know that they are intoxicated or impaired, and buying illegal substances from someone you’ve never met without testing it are just a few examples of unnecessary risks that were taken and contributed to the deaths of these two young individuals. Preventable actions.

While some have made the argument that shutting down the zoo because the poor decisions of 6 people should not affect thousands who have shelled out hundreds of dollars to enjoy their favorite musicians, its important to understand that the decision was ultimately Mayor Bloomberg‘s. While it angered many, like myself it was a wake-up call: if we do not tackle this problem head-on more and more EDM events will be cancelled, banned, and characterized as ‘death fests’, ‘drug sprees’, and ravers like you and me will be labelled ‘drug addicts’. While you can’t convince major news networks to undo the damage they are doing by stigmatizing us with each and every false depiction of all ravers being drug abusers who yell ‘popped a molly I’m sweating’ every 2.5 seconds, what you can do it this:

  • Don’t buy anything endorsing ‘molly’, ‘mdma’, or drugs of any kind
  • Demand that your favorite DJ’s stop the endorsement of drug usage of any kind
  • Demand tracks promoting ‘molly’ and other hard drugs be removed from their set lists; Heck, even walk out as soon as they come on
  • Demand harsher security that ACTUALLY checks for drugs THOROUGHLY

If purging molly from our shows means we can continue to have our major festivals and enjoy our favorite acts free of stigma and death, I say let’s do it. Who’s with me?


Social Savvy Raver

So as you may or may not know, in addition to be a wild and crazy raver clad in anything from a neon bikini to bedazzled bras to lace / leather…I’m also adept in social media.

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What has always confounded me, is how much time and effort agencies, Producers, DJs, and blogs put into maintaining a social presence…without ever bothering to track their progress. Simply hopping onto Twittercounter and charting success by follower count  and number of retweets is all well and good…but are you really measuring your progress effectively?

Spoiler Alert: No, you aren’t. And here’s why:

Are you tracking all your mentions?

Chances are, if all you are looking at are retweets and how many people slapped the ‘follow’ button, you aren’t actually tracking how many people mentioned you and endorsed you to their friends. In many cases, sharing links from Soundcloud and other music sharing sites do not always share and tag your twitter handle. Similarly, sometimes your fans can’t remember your handle and simply tweet mentions of you with your name. Try searching for you name instead of just your hashtag.

Do you actually know which network you’re having the most success on?

Source: Klout, statistics from @Ragehound

Source: Klout, statistics from @Ragehound

If you’re going off of strict follower counts alone, you might not be valuing how many people interact with you on each medium, and not taking into account the value of interactions on more effective mediums.

Do you actually know how well-liked or influential you are?

Source: Social Mention, @ragehound account

Source: Social Mention, @ragehound account

Tools like Social Mention are able to track your mentions as well as sentiment by looking at how many positive, negative, and neutral mentions there are of your account. If you aren’t sure if people actually like you or your brand…this is a pretty handy ‘stats at a glance’.

Do you know who your advocates are? Or your most popular hashtags?

Source: Social Mention, @ragehound account

Source: Social Mention, @ragehound account

Chances are, you’ve been valuing your ‘advocates’ by their follower count. That is somewhat effective, but what you should really be looking at is who interacts with you most and what value they bring in addition to their follower count.

Finally, are you using any tools?

If you aren’t you should. Klout, Social Mention, Twittercounter, Hootsuite, and Topsy are all free and extremely easy to use. Hopefully, by being smarter about how you track mentions and who your true advocates are, you can start to make smarter decisions on social (and heck, maybe even a return on the investment of your time and energy).


Kandi Kids vs. Club Scene: What Real Ravers Are

Something that has been irritating me for a considerable amount of time is the concept that all EDM events are ‘raves’, that all that listen to EDM as ‘ravers’, and that ‘PLUR’ can be mindlessly spewed and even defecated on with alterations like ‘PLURNT’ and ‘PLUR Bitch!’

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I’m sorry, but Kandi kids aren’t necessarily the club crowd and the club crowd isn’t necessarily the ‘kandi-kid’ crowd that is celebrated on instagram. EDMsnob wrote a fantastic piece explaining the rich history of those wearing kandi, so I don’t feel the need to go into depth (especially since I’m a much newer face in that arena). But I will say is this:

Of the many people I’ve come across that tweet things tagged with ‘#PLUR’ and initiate projects that claim to be  ‘PLUR’ and hock product with the false pretense that they are truly ‘ravers’, I have found that a startling few are who they claim to be. Very seldom do you meet someone whose Twitter handle or association precedes them, and find a genuine representation of what ‘ravers’ truly are.

After spending a night unwinding with some of the very first people to ever recognize me as ‘Ragehound’, I took a minute to look back on all the hard work I’ve put into taking the time to connect with anyone who has every reached out to me. Some have been incredible: they have accepted me with open arms, made me feel like a family member, and given me a sense of acceptance that no one ever could previously in my life. Some have taken time out of their day to come and meet with me, to teach me how to use a perler board, how to make a cuff, even gotten me a water and helped me to the front row my first time seeing a certain DJ. Some have held my hand and sung along to my favorite lyrics and cried with me when ‘that moment’ of a festival when it ends and the ‘comedown’ effect sets in full force. Some have stayed with me when I’ve stupidly tested my limits with drugs and alcohol and gotten too out of control and made sure I got home safe.

These kandi-clad people have been more of a family to me than my own at times, and that is why I get livid when their lifestyle is equated to a joke.

I view those who hock PLUR as a marketing tool as a joke. I also look at those who have begged and pleaded me to tweet their crap, promote their shitty venues, and support their jaded causes which wind up just being another marketing tool as jokers as well. Nonetheless I tweeted, I facebooked, I supported and championed them because that’s the person I am. I suppose what irked me in some cases, was when it came time when I needed that same favor, some magically found it ‘not feasible’ or suddenly ‘just didn’t have the time’.

What I largely discovered, was that these were the people who didn’t arrive at festivals with kandi they’d spent hours and hours making especially for people they knew and loved. These were not the people who sometimes went as far as to coordinate with their friends to match costumes, made sure everyone was hydrated, or took the time to explain subtleties of the music to newcomers who had seen a trailer for a festival on Youtube and yearned to experience an EDM festival for themselves. Instead, these were the people who wrote condescending articles in response to kandi kids, who scoffed and laughed at articles like my own explaining the connection between PLUR and charity, and who would leave comments like this on pictures of girls dressed for raves:

 

And these people are largely the ‘club’ crowd: the crowd that goes to ‘fine establishments’ to enjoy bottle service, listen to a carefully curated selection of ‘techno’ that they feel is far superior to the ‘drop heavy’ sets one hears at festivals (which I can respect), and views the ‘raver’ crowd as a mass of drug-addicted youngsters too jaded to understand what real music is. These are the people who will belittle you for the music you listen to, the clothes you wear, and wave their smug sense of entitlement about like a magic wand. They will tell you the ‘kandi kids’ are awful, tell you how they yearn for when no one knew about Tiesto or Hardwell, and when EDC wasn’t a neon parade of girls in underwear. They probably won’t let you get to the front of the stage, or offer you water. They may instead sneer at you with your parched mouth, thinking you ‘popped a molly and you are sweating’, and as a result think of you as some colorful insect pestering them.

So when individuals such as this tweet about ‘PLUR’ and wave their smug sense of self-importance at others while trying to call themselves ‘ravers’, I get frustrated. These were the individuals  pouring beers from the VIP balcony onto shuffling ravers below at Pacha during Tyler Sherritt’s set (oh don’t worry, I saw you bunch of fools and I’ll return the favor). These were the assholes who elbowed a girl in the face next to me at Zedd when she tried to edge in front of a taller person to see.

These people aren’t ‘ravers’. They don’t preach ‘PLUR’, and probably can’t tell you where it originated. Don’t call them ravers; it’s an insult to those of us who are.

Thank you,

~The Hound


Peace, Love, Unity, and Reinvention (Guest Editorial)

PLUR: It’s one of the biggest buzzwords circulating throughout the raver scene, and has been utilized across the scene as both a communal term, an ideology..and a key tool in marketing campaigns.

It’s been slapped onto shirts, hash-tagged, exclaimed by kandi-clad ravers at festivals, and is on the uptrend. While there are many efforts in the scene that claim to demonstrate ‘PLUR’, many of these fall short as they simply use ‘PLUR’ as an excuse for monetary gain, contrived purpose, and ultimately end in sloppy execution; often leading to more negativity surrounding their shortcomings.

Additionally, many who get behind the movement fail to understand the origins of the concept, or simply drop the facade once its core virtues no longer suit them. As a result, those who use the acronym are often met with disdain and annoyance from the more ‘clubby’ or ‘audiophilic’ crowd and regarded as the ‘dirty hippies’ of our time.

However in more recent efforts, the concept of PLUR has ushered in a new application that may help to fight the stigmatized ‘rave culture’: Charity.

With major acts like Avicii donating up to $1 million while on tour and donating 2 million meals through the FEED organization, Steve Aoki forming the Steve Aoki Charitable Fund to aid children in third world countries, and Insomniac Event’s Pasquale Rotella donating up to $115,000 to Las Vegas charities, there is more to the PLUR-spewing scene that initially meets the eye.

On a smaller scale, new events have begun to emerge that follow in the same footsteps carrying the same message: a quick Google search reveals hundreds of thousands of small Facebook events whose missions range from local initiatives to third-world outreach.

Among the vibrant (and ever vigilant) raver community on Twitter, small but tangible efforts range from rave bras to benefit charities to full-blown fundraising campaigns to benefit fellow ravers, friends, and family in need. Icons among the festival crowd like Lady Casa (formerly Molly Casa until a ‘clean the scene’ name change) preach acceptance and work towards inspiring others to inject more positivity into a largely snob-saturated atmosphere.

Though many club regulars, tech-house die-hards, and veterans to the scene may feel that today’s “kandi kid” PLUR-preaching scene is largely contrived, there is a tangible forward-thinking motive behind the movement that is hard to ignore. As the scene matures, It is my hope to see more ravers embrace PLUR in a more charitable way by reaching out to others in need: anything from sharing a water at a festival or attending a charity rave for a non-profit.

Instead of just slapping ‘PLUR’ on a shirt, organizers should try slapping the concept of PLUR onto events and partnering with notable (and honorable) causes which set forth to make a difference in the world. I’m not saying we need an ‘Electric PLUR Carnival’ in 2014, but I would gladly welcome events like Electric Zoo donating proceeds to the ASPCA and Nocturnal Wonderland partnering with the Make a Wish Foundation.

Instead of casting light on lingering the drug culture that becomes the main focus of media sources in reviewing events, I would love to see major events give back to rehabilitation centers, hospitals, and recovery efforts for any raver who may have found themselves in a dangerous situation at a rave.

Read more: http://whiteraverrafting.com/peace-love-unity-and-reinvention/2013/07/22/#ixzz2bIS1sLTV


A Word on Those Who “Preach PLUR” and Practice Hate

Screen Shot 2013-05-19 at 7.48.04 PM

I’ve noticed an increase in negativity on Twitter; whether it be in reaction to the cancellation of Moonrise (warranted, what happened was a shock and a disrespect to the artists who were signed up to perform) or the outright vicious attack of others, there seems to be an increase in hypocrisy surrounding those who claim to ‘preach PLUR’ and then so adamantly drop the veil of acceptance to berate and humiliate others. Truthfully, it makes me sad to see that so many have turned against the true ideals they stand for in favor of petty argument and bickering. Not only that, but I’ve even seen a truly disgusting increase in outright muckraking by twitter handles that claim to represent blogs. I know I have been known to criticize producers such as Paris Hilton, Will.i.am, and Pauly D…but there is a fundamental difference in disagreeing with the musical styles they perpetuate and an all-out assault on them personally.

I understand that twitter is a platform built on conversation, and that not all conversations will be positive, but outright bullying of anyone within the EDM scene is fundamentally un-PLUR, and if you are viciously attacking anyone be it a DJ, Anon, or personal handle, you are not preaching PLUR. To be honest, anyone who knows the original origin of the saying that coined the phenomena remembers that the initial mention was in a threatening manner:

“You better start showing some Peace, Love and Unity, or I will break your $%^ing faces”

Initially yelled by at a rave where a fight broke out, this moment of clarity would inspire our neon-laden comrades to later on don the expressive and vibrant decor they wear now, and their mission to spread love and acceptance of everyone in the scene. I’m not saying I’m going to break your fucking face if you continue to berate others while “going through the motions” of PLUR, but I think its time someone informed you that you are perpetuating a blasphemy, a charade, and not truly embracing the Peace, Love, Unity, or Respect idolized by this generation.

PLUR is being the difference, not the opposition.


Humanizing Social Media For the EDM Scene

Amid a sea of buying followers, promoting tweets, and ‘get followers quick’ ponzi schemes…it seems like many influencers on social media are vastly overlooking the true value of organic interaction. A simple Twitter search to see who’s talking about you, your work, or your flaws can reveal a plethora of voices you are woefully ignoring.

Think About It

Ok, so you’re not Armin van Buuren or Tiesto, but surely you can remember the first big interaction you had on social media that got you excited; maybe you got retweeted by one of your idols, followed by a major producer, or even just got a “good job” in response to a new release. What distinguishes twitter users in the EDM scene from other scenes is a fundamental and unadulterated love of the music and common wish to meet and greet like-minded individuals. What this means, is that ravers or EDM listeners are far more likely to thrive off their interactions with their favorite producers/DJs/vocalists. If you’re an established producer or vocalist, there is a strong chance you have a fan that wakes up every morning to your music, tweets giddily about you when your new work is released, and might even kiss a poster of you every morning (ok maybe not, but feel free to stroke your ego anyway). But if you haven’t reached out to these excited fans and simply employ ‘aggressive following‘ strategies or only ‘favorite’ tweets about you, you could be missing out.

Surprise & Delight

There is a term in the PR industry known as ‘surprise and delight’; meaning at special moments, you can surprise your fans with a meaningful interaction, and delight them with knowing that you have acknowledged them and took time out of your day to interact with them. This could be finding a picture someone took at your show and retweeting it, commenting on a mention of you, or even just finally following that fan who tweets about your music and tells his/her friends to buy everything you have on Beatport all the time.

Your Followers Are Your Cheerleaders

Interact with your fans more organically; search for mentions of yourself, your songs, your favorite things, and start getting more one-on-one with your fanbase. You don’t have to fake it to make it on a platform that was designed for conversation (not straight marketing), and in fact influencers such as Laidback Luke and Tiesto have demonstrated that the most important gift you can give to your fans is a moment of recognition. It says “I appreciate you” and shows that you are not just on Twitter to make money and drive content. Your fans are human, so they will appreciate when you are too.


Buying Followers in the EDM Scene; Who’s Faking It?

In the age of social media being used as a primary tool of marketing, a measure of true ‘influence’ within a space more now than ever, brands, companies, and celebrities utilize the sheer size of their fan base as a way to assert dominance in the industry and amongst their peers. That being said, it should surprise no one that some of these major success stories are not 100% the ‘social media strategies’ we are told constantly by the media, but in fact ‘fronts’ created by a phenomenon known as ‘buying followers’.

Buying Influence, Tanking Credibility

You may have noticed my constant mention of ‘buying followers’ lately on Twitter and how I think it invalidates the credibility of those who utilize it to get ahead (Not to be confused with ‘promoting tweets’ or ‘promoting handles’). But to take a step back, how does one exactly ‘buy’ followers?  In 2012 Fast Company released an article exposing the practice of ‘buying followers’, and  highlighting tools such as StatusPeople and Klout as measurement systems that help determine influence as a measure of ‘active follower’ interaction; separating the inactive fake ‘bought’ followers from active genuine fans. According to Fast Company, on websites such as buytwitterfollowers.org, as many as 5,000 ‘fake’ followers  on Twitter can be bought for as little as $77, while on sites like usocial.net a massive 4,000 Facebook followers goes for an approximated $617. What does a ‘fake’ follower look like? Blogger Zach Bussey describes these mindless bots as a ‘jumble of letters.

So Who’s ‘Fronting’?

So this got me thinking, how many of my beloved producers, DJs, and EDM anon handles are big fat fakers? If we use the tools mentioned by Fast Company, we might be able to do ‘background checks’ on followers and see exactly whose audience in engaged…and whose in comprised on mindless zombie accounts.

So who cares if you ‘fake it to make it?’…as it turns out, a lot of people do

“Turns out, buying followers is probably the worst kept secret in all of social media — and it has a potential for a nasty and public backlash.” Lauren Hockenson, The Next Web

When it was recently alleged that DJ Bl3nd bought his Facebook fanbase, it set off a backlash of negativity.  In a heated exchange of Twitter, Diplo and DJ Bl3nd traded choice words (and later blows) as to whether Dj Bl3nd’s astoundingly (and suspiciously) high follow count on Facebook  (~3 million) was a loving fanbase….or a purchased front.

So to test the validity of Diplo’s accusations, I ran the most thorough check of his Twitter (I realize it was his Facebook under fire, but I operate primarily on Twitter) on as many recognized validation sites as I could muster. Now, we must take into account that ‘bot’ accounts affect everyone, and that someone with between 1-5% fake followers is probably in the clear (or possibly has been targeted by those obnoxious ‘teamfollowback’ drones) and that being said, I think it’s fair to establish that at least 70% of your followers should be active of ‘good’ followers as according to StatusPeople’s ‘faker’ test (honestly, in school anything less than a 70 is failing, so why not apply it here?). In terms of ‘inactive’ followers, while some listing might appear to be in the red (more than 10%) having up to 30% inactive users is completely normal, and may reflect that some of your followers may be less-active twitter users (made an account, followed you, forgot, barely tweet…it happens). The number to really keep an eye on, and the comparison of ‘fake‘ to ‘good‘.

DJBl3ndVSDiploIMAGE

What I discovered was that after utilizing suggestions from as many the various credible tech news resources, Diplo may have some validity in his claim…but isn’t exempt from it either.  Both he and DJ Bl3nd are reported to have more than 20% ‘fake’ followers, and less than 60% ‘good’ and active followers. While this seems a bit harsh to jump and assume either of these people are buying up followers, I did come upon some accounts with much more obvious implications. After digging around some more, a put together a small sampling of some handles who appear to buy followers, and some who probably don’t*:

BillboardToppersGraph-GRAPHIC

UpandComers

 

Graph2EDMANON-GRAPHIC

(I left Diplo in there just for comparison) 

I’d like to say for the record, that I have the utmost respect for all the producers, DJs, and anons listed….and I realize that these results more than likely reflect poor decisions by their PR agencies / management. I still love and respect your music, drive, and passion; truly.

*All results are not 100% conclusive, and are merely meant to shed some insight into which accounts ACTUALLY have active followers.  I cannot speak 100% conclusively if these ‘fake’ followers were bought or not (only if they might have been). 

 It is important to note that these tools are publicly available, free, and gauge the activity and inactivity of your followers. Go check it out for yourselves.

 

Sources:

http://www.fastcompany.com/3000359/buying-twitter-followers-beware-statuspeople-service-exposes-social-medias-black-market

http://thenextweb.com/twitter/2012/12/15/fake-followers-an-easy-game-but-not-worth-the-risk/

http://www.edmsauce.com/2013/04/17/diplo-and-dj-bl3nd-exchange-words-over-social-media-followers/

http://zumic.com/2013/04/18/diplo-instigates-fight-with-dj-bl3nd-at-ims-engage-conference/

http://www.mediabistro.com/alltwitter/how-to-tell-if-someone-has-a-fake-follower-count_b14898

http://agbeat.com/social-media/twit/


About Me

So I’ve alluded previously to why I’ve chosen to go by ‘Ragehound’ and little bits and pieces and who I am and why I’ve decided to blog about EDM and the scene (despite having admittedly scant knowledge). A while ago I read a blog from Lex of Bad Kids Clothing talking intimately about her social anxiety, and felt incredibly moved.

Here are these two rockstar girls running a company in a scene which is heavily male-dominated. Think about it: How many female DJs do you know off-hand? How many female-run companies that cater to the EDM/nightlife crowd (strip clubs don’t count, you sassy smartasses)? As a little anonymus twitter handle peon, I’ve had the distinct pleasure of getting a chance to interact with some phenomenal people.

And this is something that’s been long overdue in my life.

Growing up, my family essentially played stateline hopscotch as we moved for a variety of reasons: someone got a new job, a new opportunity arose, etc.etc.etc. What it endowed me with, was an uncanny ability to be thrust into awkward social situations and learn to rapidly adapt. This means that today, something I excel at is going to raves/parties/etc alone, and come back with tons of new friends, phone numbers, and as a result…twitter followers.

But this erratic moving left me with a lot of problems too. I don’t suffer from social anxiety like Lex, but what’s appeared to happen (as I’ve evidenced from friends) is a real gap in social skills. I can meet tons of people, I can put up a tough front and be the shining beacon of positivity in the room…but I’m not particularly great once I go back to being alone. I’m not saying I should be in any way pitied; the isolation I grew up with made me a better writer, a better listener, and forced me to turn to Toonami, thick ancient books, and Adult Swim for my source of engaging material. I didn’t grow up with a lot of consistent friends as support groups…and a lot of music I listened to was whatever unmarked mix CD I could get a friend to burn for me.

I grew up loving Daft Punk, Darude, the Gorillaz,…and some DJs I profess that I cannot name because I only remember them as “track 6 on that banged up old purple CD from middle school”.

What operating as Ragehound has given me, is a way to hold on to connections made, and the mask has allowed me to literally ‘mask’ my fear of losing friends, connections, or ever falling out of touch with anyone I see as special again.

If I seem crazy or outlandish, a lot of it stems from a craving to be remembered, a desire to be held as dear, and a hope that maybe someday that DJ I met or that follower I hugged will want to see me again.

I might appear to be some hot-shot anon handle, but I guess I wanted to say,

“I’m just like you”

And I love each and every one of you

❤ ~The Hound