So Much For Subtlety: MTV’s PUSH is the Ultimate in Commercialized Music

Posted on July 8, 2012


I’ll admit that I’m slow on the uptake on this one. MTV’s PUSH has been around for a while. The website boasts “former PUSH artists including global superstars like Justin Bieber, Ke$ha and Bruno Mars.” The only part of this whole PUSH thing is that now I have someone to blame for forcing me to hear these “artists” all the damn time.

Because that’s what MTV’s PUSH does: it forces “the next big thing” into global pop culture. The latest decided icon is a 19-year-old self-proclaimed stud-muffin* named Conor Maynard. Conor Maynard is not yet the next big thing. But in this video, he makes sure you know he will be, so you’d better get used to the idea. I’m wildly tempted to launch into a tangent about how abhorrent not only his personal music is, but the entire genre of music he perpetuates, but I’ll restrain myself.

The real villan of this story is MTV. PUSH means that they have disposed of even attempting to hide their commercialization of music. No longer does MTV even pretend that they are in it for the music; in it to encourage and distribute the voices of a generation. Nope. Money. Just money. MTV will tell you what music you like. Not only what music you like, but which abysmal pop star you’ll be forced to live side-by-side with for the next musical season.

The relationship between music lovers and MTV (really the entire big music industry) is no longer reciprocal in any way once something like PUSH comes to be. MTV doesn’t need to find the thing that all the cool kids are listening to and popularize it. They tell the cool kids what they’ll be listening to a month from now. Anyone who has watched more than an hour of MTV in the last 5 years or so knows that they aren’t an avenue for well-composed music, smart lyrics, or anything besides the occasionally catchy, but PUSH has taken it too far. MTV is getting way to open about dictating my desires. And the saddest part is that most of us non-music executive folks end up buying in at some point. Ethics, MTV. Try out some ethics.

*Okay…that’s a lie. But he seriously implies it.

Posted in: Media, Uncategorized