Social media can be a blessing as well as a curse for many rappers who use it for both professional and personal reasons. The upside is obvious: for those trying to have their music stick out from the glut of material available online, building up a social media following and, through that, loyal fans who are willing to spend money on tickets to your show is a crucial part of becoming a successful artist these days. However, the downside can be devastating to the often precarious perch that hip-hop egos sit atop of. Joyner Lucas admitted as much earlier today, with a Twitter post that should be a wake-up call to all those who take the anonymity of being online for granted.
— Joyner Lucas (@JoynerLucas) September 12, 2017
The fact that the smile Lucas wake up with is turned upside down by the vitriol he comes across while perusing social media is not a startling revelation to those who actively use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other platforms for straight-up music purposes or otherwise. In fact, Lucas’ statement that if it weren’t for music, he wouldn’t even have social media accounts, is a rumbling that’s been passed around the hip-hop community with more urgency as of late. As per DJ Booth, Joey Bada$$ threatened to drop social media altogether in favor of focusing entirely on his music, while Kanye West famous removed himself from Twitter and other platforms due to the intense backlash he continually faced for his controversial statements online.
The dangers of social media, as well as the willful ignorance it takes to turn a blind eye to the negative symptoms of heavy usage, is an issue that’s extending beyond the rap world and inserting itself into our everyday lives. Last year, Forbeslinked the near-constant usage of Facebook and other platforms to depressions, which seems to be a more than likely outcome for most people. “Because social media has become such an integrated component of human interaction, it is important for clinicians interacting with young adults to recognize the balance to be struck in encouraging potential positive use, while redirecting from problematic use,” said Brian A. Primack, M.D., Ph.D. and a senior author of the research project and the director of Pitt’s Center for Research on Media, Technology and Health.