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Dead Wrong? Singer Ashanti Uses Murder to Promote Single

R&B singer Ashanti has taken her controversially violent music video, featuring an aggrieved woman murdering her lover, to the next level. Fans can now send friends or enemies "gotchagrams," which pose as newscasts forecasting the recipient's imminent murder, which is inspired by Ashanti's video. Check out the graphic video that came with my "copycat" threat.

If you're on the receiving end, you get the video delivered in a pretty personal email from "Detective James Nicholas," who urges you to contact him (via an actual phone number) immediately because your life may be in danger. I followed up with the detective and was greeted with a message from Ashanti. I then proceeded to get a followup text message that said: "Join my mob so I can text you later."

Ashanti's video and its freakishly realistic promotional tool seem to me like a senseless promotion of violence. But, perhaps it's just art and should be thought of as a reflection and not a cause of society's problems. Even so, I would hope that legitimate artistic expression has some level of sophistication that goes beyond a murder hoax. What do you think? Are you laughing?

Join The Conversation
BRANDYNICOLE730 BRANDYNICOLE730 9 years
Are you somehow surprised she is promoting violence? I mean, she is a part of the hip-hop community.
elaine elaine 9 years
looks like the "gotchacram" has been taken down.
yesteryear yesteryear 9 years
this reminds me of when i pitched that commercial of the penis covered in sores to GM to promote their new SUV. it was so weird that they didn't like my idea. i mean, the "new media" is all about divergent archetypal images, right?!
leeluvfashion leeluvfashion 9 years
Okay I do not agree with showing the violence in the music video however she isn't the first to have a video about that subject. However I do have an issue with the "gotchagram"; I find that very inappropriate. I think that is taking "promotional" deals too far.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Oh, so I'm REALLY showing my age... :rotfl:
foxie foxie 9 years
They aren't new or anything.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
(Showing my age) Hmmmm, I've not heard of Trail of Dead.
foxie foxie 9 years
Well no argument here obviously. All music is terrible... except Trail of Dead.
foxie foxie 9 years
Ugh, I'm gonna send a gotchagram to Stephanie from Top Chef.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Maybe, but instead of going for the shock factor, try impressing me with your musical ability. Just my opinion.
foxie foxie 9 years
Yeah well, welcome to Hollywood. They glorify everything negative in society. This is a minor offense compared to the rockers and rappers who glorify murder and really, really mean it. I think she's just going for shock factor.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
I agree piper. I look back to the trips my family took when we were younger and I con't imagine how mom and dad could stand us... You are correct foxxie. You are the only one who doesn't have a problem with this. This is somewhat minor, in comparison to all the other problems with the hip hop community, but anything that glorifies murder is troubling.
foxie foxie 9 years
Soooooo I guess I'm the only one who doesn't really have a huge problem with this... this is fluffy compared to other problems in the hip hop community, IMO. I don't understand the appeal of this ad, but I don't understand the outrage either.
piper23 piper23 9 years
Me too, makes road trips even that much longer. Wouldn't have it any other way though!
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
:rotfl: I am sooooo tired of kids music...
piper23 piper23 9 years
I'm kind of partial to The Wiggles. The Cold Spaghetti song is great!
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
LOL, the last two CD's I purchased were Finding Nemo songs, and Mickey Mouse Club Christmas...
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 9 years
As long as we keep buying this crap, the entertainment corporations will keep selling it. I think it's easier to make a pretty girl sound good in the studio than market an ordinary-looking one. The last two CDs I bought were by The Tangent and RPWL, both on the Inside Out label. Just a little off the mainstream.
Kelliegrl Kelliegrl 9 years
According to the Wall Street Journal Showtime did something similar promoting their primetime show Dexter. It seems the difference here is Ashanti’s level of popularity Either way, I think the tactic is pretty perverted.
flutterpie flutterpie 9 years
i personally think its a stretch to call the song "a hit single", anyhoo, ashanti hasnt had a hit in years, the label she is on hasnt had a hit artist in years, its not surprising they would do this. now the only thing that is left is for her to have some kind of "beef" with the likes of rihanna, beyonce or someone who is obviously more talented than her. unfortunately the listening public has created the whole shock value thing, talent and artistic credibility no longer get our attention. we need to hear bill o reilly complain about or read about it in the paper. nobody truly cares about ashanti anymore but we will if she has some kind of catchy gimmick that pisses everyone off.
yesteryear yesteryear 9 years
it's a badge of honor to grow up in a ghetto neighborhood and have people killed around you these days. so this makes total sense. if you HAVEN't had a friend shot to death or otherwise brutally murdered you "have not lived". it's scary, stupid, and unbelievable... but it's true.
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 9 years
It certainly gets your attention ... but perhaps for the wrong reasons. It's just weird and creepy to me ... especially the blood. Eww!
Eilonwy Eilonwy 9 years
It's unfathomable to me that anyone would find this angle of marketing appealing, interesting, or (regarding the producers/label) financially solvent. At best, it detracts from the actual product being promoted (the music...). At worse, it is a gross perversion (and exploitation) of the serious issues of violence faced by so many today. Shock (read: violence) within the entertainment industries (music, television and so forth) definitely has a saturation point, at which it either becomes downright offensive, or entirely alien to the artistic product it ostensibly promotes.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
On a peripheral note I think part of the problem is that the spot light on the talent in the music industry has steadily moved from the actual singer/band/group to the producer. The power needs to be brought back to the artist because many of them are controlled. Remember back in the day when singers looked like everyday people. Yeah some of them may have been unattractive but hot damn they could sing. Now you have all of these polished produced singers who are under the thumb of cleverly crafted contracts.
piper23 piper23 9 years
Nas was going to name his album the n word but caught flak for it and backed off. Now Ashanti is doing this. If you have to resort to "shock value" to sale your music then you need to find another career.
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