Music Journalism Can't Afford A Hollowed-Out Pitchfork

🔗 a linked post to » — originally shared here on

It is hard not to see this development as a true indicator that we're nearing the endpoint of robust, meaningful music criticism as a concept. The idea that music journalism has no value is one of the most pervasive thoughts circulating among the suits who control the industry. What those people continue to deprive us of is smart, varied music coverage produced by actual journalists, most of whom now find themselves being squeezed out of an industry that only rewards slavish devotion to the biggest pop stars, or a constant courting of drama, gossip, and violence that is only tangentially related to music.

If there's a better future for music journalism to come, it will perhaps spring from the re-emergence of small-batch music blogs and more localized coverage. But what we're left with now is a corporatized wasteland, and fewer publications than ever equipped to write about music with all the rigor and passion it deserves.

I’m glad Iz mentioned the optimistic part of the situation at the end.

I’m, of course, sad and frustrated by what mega corporations are doing to journalism as a whole (not just music journalism).

But what keeps my hope alive is continuing to support smaller writers who cover their beats with an infectious passion.

I don’t see a future where journalism suddenly becomes a six-figure kind of job, because capitalism is not a system where art (and nuanced, considered discussions of art) is valued enough to justify that sort of business investment.

I suppose that could be seen as bleak, but take it from someone who is currently grappling with the costs associated with doing the thing I love in exchange for a salary: it’s great for the pocket book, but damn near lethal for my soul.

And I suppose by trading my passions in for money, I can use that money to support artists who are out there making stuff that makes me happy.

On a similar note: how do y’all discover new music these days? Are there any good writers or blogs I should be following?

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