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Is Celebrity Silence a New Normal?

Instead of standing up for themselves in times of trouble, are celebrities staying silent during conflict the best course of action?

Credit: Shutterstock/ 13_Phunkod, Kathy Hutchins, Featureflash Photo Agency

Instead of standing up for themselves in times of trouble, are celebrities staying silent during conflict the best course of action?

The music and entertainment industry is always changing. During a time when people are more connected than ever, it is interesting to see how many public figures are refraining from giving their true and honest thoughts online as a means to further connect with fans.  

Names like Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Harry Styles, and The Weeknd are all household names, yet they move in silence. The everyday person does not know where they are or what they have been spending their time doing. Most of them will not even comment if their whereabouts do happen to get out. 

It may be in part due to the decline in print news popularity. Or due to the instantaneous nature of social media nowadays. However, the pop culture scandals in media just don’t hit the same. (Or are actual crimes.)

Parasocial relationships also play a huge role in the ignition of celebrity tea. Parasocial relationships are described when a person is in a one-sided relationship with another person. Whether it be platonic, romantic, or a relationship of admiration, they are ever prevalent.

Parasocial relationships help to build fanbases, but where is the line in a growing career that a celebrity must cross to become a silent idol? 

Celebrity mess just isn’t the same anymore. Musicians and celebrities alike are losing their personability in favor of a more manicured image. After taking a look at some more recent celebrity beefs and their choice of rebuttal, it seems that when conflict arises, a very common path of action is silence.

Why is this?

The simple answer is that acting out emotionally on the internet makes people believe you’re crazy. People are less likely to trust the one who is acting crazy on the internet.

Notably, the ongoing rap beef between Megan Thee Stallion and Nicki Minaj has been extremely public. A basic rundown of their history is that they were civil with each other, they even collaborated on the song “Hot Girl Summer” together in 2019 after an Instagram livestream they chatted and freestyle on.

Nicki Minaj and Megan Thee Stallion

After their collaboration debuted within the top 10 of the Billboard R&B/Rap chart in the US, Megan also went on to collaborate with Cardi B.

Minaj has a problem with Cardi B allegedly stemming from Cardi’s support of rapper Remmy Ma. Even though they collaborated on two songs while tensions were brewing, they eventually had a physical falling out, and their professional relationship never recovered.

The song that Megan and Cardi worked together on became extremely successful, and this partnership clearly left a bitter taste in Minaj’s mouth in regards to considering Megan a friend. Their relationship fell apart right in front of our eyes.

In the past, both rappers Nicki and Megan had bonded over taking shots at Cardi B until Megan collaborated with her, seemingly stabbing Nicki in the back.

“WAP” debuts at number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100

Fans allege that Nicki has continued to throw subtle shots at Megan in songs like “Red Ruby Da Sleeze” with the lyric allegedly playing on the artist’s name, Megan thee Stallion.

“I don’t f**k with horses since Christopher Reeves,”

“Red Ruby Da Sleeze” by Nicki Minaj

Allegedly playing on the artist’s name, Megan Thee Stallion. Another succeeding line,

“Dorito b*****s, mad that they not chose”

“Red Ruby Da Sleeze” by Nicki Minaj

If about Megan, it refers to a past collaboration that Megan did with the snack brand.

The Catalyst: HISS

It all came to a head when Megan Thee Stallion released her new single “HISS,” marking the beginning of a new album cycle.

The track has a line that people believe is attacking Nicki Minaj’s husband for being a sex offender.

“These h**s don’t be mad at Megan, these h**s mad at Megan’s Law”

“HISS” by Megan Thee Stallion

To an unsuspecting listener, this line will probably go unnoticed. but those who are loyal fans of Nicki or Megan probably know that Nicki’s husband, also high school sweetheart Kenneth Petty, is a sex offender. The line refers to Megan’s law, which requires offenders to alert communities where sex offenders reside.

Nicki Minaj went on an internet rampage. She allegedly didn’t sleep because she was live streaming for hours while she worked on writing and recording her response diss. The amount of attention she was giving the song showed how much it really effected her.

Less than 72 hours later, Nicki puts out a diss track attacking Megan for continuing her career after her mother’s death, her height, and her run-in with rapper Tory Lanez that resulted in Megan being shot in the foot.

“Bad bitch, she like six foot (Ooh), I call her BigFoot (Brr)

The bitch fell off, I said, “Get up on your good foot””

“BigFoot” by Nicki Minaj

In this song, there seems to be confirmation that Nicki was dissing Megan Thee Stallion in her song “Red Ruby Da Sleeze” when she writes.

“Uh, still ain’t topped “Red Ruby” (No, no, mhm)”

“BigFoot” by Nicki Minaj

Amidst the Internet chaos, “BigFoot” debuted at 10 on the Billboard Hot R&B/ Hip Hop chart, not to be confused with the Billboard Hot 100.

Even though Minaj put the song out to prove she was still the reigning female rapper, Megan outsold her single and was entirely unbothered by the situation.

Where was Megan during all of this? Not engaging.

Instead of engaging further with Minaj, Megan posts behind-the-scenes content and appreciation for her fans streaming the new song. Some of the comments on these posts are reflective of my stance, calling her silence ‘golden’ and that it showcases her professionalism.

Fans support Megan’s silence. A comment on Megan’s Instagram post about “HISS” going #1.

Nicki did not let it go. She remained overreacting online, and to make it clear that she still does not like Megan, she plays her song “BigFoot” during the pre-show playlist for her current Pink Friday 2 Tour.

For being so stuck in her ways and nasty in her response song, Minaj has been called “old and bitter.” Due to her constant live streaming and rambling during the production of the track, she has been labeled “strung out” for acting so erratically for such a long time. Her reputation and credibility have taken a huge hit.

It hasn’t stopped Minaj from selling out her US arena tour, but after a string of questionable behavior dating back to 2017, for some casual fans, this was the nail in the coffin of dislike.

The silence on Megan Thee Stallions’ part allowed her to slip in between the cracks of the media coverage. She successfully avoided demonizing herself and has jumpstarted her new album cycle with her second single, “Wanna Be,” with another female rapper, Glorilla.

The silence in her times of trouble opened up the opportunity for people to forget about what happened with the quick news cycle turnover of online media. In this case, not speaking up for herself worked in her favor.

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