That’s All Folks
You may have noticed that the site was offline for a little while earlier today. I thought it was because I hadn’t paid my bill. In actuality
I’m now told I cannot stream or offer any Gucci for download. I am not even allowed to make embedded videos available or link offsite files. Basically you will never hear Gucci Mane music through this site again. Longer rant to come. Right now I have two hours to frantically delete all Gucci from the site or it goes down again for good (and that’s a lot of Gucci).
Update: I just spent the afternoon on the phone with my ISP Bluehost and Douglas Kassem, VP of Gray Zone, the piracy watchdog group with a laughably ironic name that labels like Warner hire to harass broke bloggers. As it turns out, Gray Zone sent me this vague and ominous email about the track yesterday and CC:ed it to my host’s abuse department. It ended up in my spam box because it looked like spam. (Basic internet reasoning is that any email with the word URGENT in all caps is probably not actually urgent, paradoxically.)
But Mr. Kassem assured me that Gray Zone and Warner were only concerned with the track “I Got All Of That” and that they never asked Bluehost to have me remove all Gucci or to shut down my site. Bluehost somehow misinterpreted this line of the email: “IMMEDIATELY REMOVE ALL LINKS, REFERENCES, DOWNLOADS, VIDEOS, STREAMING AUDIO, AND MP3 FILES ASSOCIATED WITH GUCCI MANE” as a call for me to immediately remove all links, references, downloads, videos, streaming audio and mp3 files associated with Gucci Mane. Bluehost was to psychically infer that this was in reference to just one specific track, which was never mentioned by name.
So here’s the long and short fallout: old posts can stand (should I roll back through and restore the links? do you guys care? i’m really tired of cutting and pasting) and I’m told to not post any “new Gucci that might be on his album” in the future. Whatever that means. I suspect it will be another 24hrs before I get a new Gucci related track mp3 emailed to me from an @wmg email address or the camp of a high profile Gucci collaborator.
So I’m not sure who’s the most at fault here. Gray Zone, my itchy trigger finger service provider (maybe it’s time for a new one?) or Warner themselves for sending in the internet storm troopers. I am leaning to the latter,as these are the same dudes who deleted “Cop Killer, shelved Black Bastards and Live & Let Die and had Prince writing “slave” on his cheek.
My sincere condolences to Mr. Radric Davis for ending up on a label that so grievously misunderstands the modern music promotional landscape. Because there is no plugging a leak after it breaks. They are wasting every cent they have given Gray Zone. Everyone that downloaded “I Got All Of That” has already passed it to their friends, reuploaded it to their favorite message board, posted it on twitter on some Kevin Spacey pay it forward shit. If Gucci, Warner or anybody else can’t contain his music they need to look around their offices and crew and figure out who is letting it get out. They should not be going after the hand to hand underground distributors who play a big part of artists like Gucci getting any buzz in the first place. Quite frankly this is much too much headache and I’m probably going to be very tentative about writing about Gucci Mane or any music from the Warner stronghold in the future. On both my illegal bootleg mp3 blog and at the more legitimate mainstream publications I contribute to.
To any other labels or creepy internet piracy watchdogs: there’s a contact button in the top right hand corner of the site. If you are a label that wants your music removed from the site please send me an email asking as much. Try to word it so it gets past my spam filters and mention the specific tracks in question. I’ve always been pretty receptive to these requests when I see them. There’s no need to mess with my livelihood and waste my afternoon by going above my head to have my site shut down entirely. I could have all put this time and effort towards actually getting some positive publicity for artists like Gucci.