BRONSKY ELEVEN shut down their Facebook account for reasons of Rock’n’Roll.
Everybody’s going on Facebook and despite the fact that the social network has lost some of its former attraction among the youth, there seems to be no alternative: Either you like it or you’ll become somewhat anti-social. The pressure increases if you are a regional band, searching for a larger audience. How on earth should a band like us succeed in the 21st century without a fan site on Facebook? How should we find, reach and attract our audience with all the other unsigned and hardly known bands are seemingly playing up a storm on the social media? How can it be we have a fanbase anyway?
It’s become conventional wisdom: The large Internet corporations are turning their users into their products. The user has changed from being the customer into being part of the large grey mass of consumers, that are mainly worth their personal data for commercial reasons.
Abandoning Facebook as a Rock’n’Roll obligation
Besides the well known and largely discussed reasons of data security, discarding Facebook as a Rock’n Roll band is a question of who we want to be. Since when is it Rock’n Roll to curry the favour of the powerful just because it’s comfortable? Would the Rolling Stones have set up a Facebook page during their wild and relentless bad ass times? Would Robert Plant have his Led Zep buddies posting, liking and sharing while there was so much musical ground to cover? Can you imagine Bob Dylan making Facebook friends with Neil Young while social insecurities, disadvantages and inequalities where dividing the societies, nuclear war was on the edge of happening, and the mighty and powerful were corrupting their constituents?
The internet corporations are the mighty and powerful of today, they are streamlining their users, disciplining them, forcing them into certain language codes, censoring posts and messages to their own standards. It’s a Rock’n’Roll obligation to not blindly use every tool they freely offer to us, thus making us work to their benefit and to our long-term disadvantage in most fields of the social.
Rock’n’Roll is about resisting the powers and doing things our own way. It’s about resisting conventions that are generally deemed unquestionably. Or as philosopher Judith Butler would say: “At its best nonviolent resistance becomes a “carefully crafted ‘fuck you'”.