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Music Industry Declares ‘Blackout Tuesday’ in Response to George Floyd’s Death

Minneapolis, Minnesota. May 30, 2020. 12:30pm On May 25, Minneapolis Police officers arrested George Floyd, handcuffed him, then held him down on his stomach while Derek Chauvin put a knee on his neck as Floyd pleaded for breath. George Floyd died soon after. The four officers at the scene have been fired. Derek Chauvin has been arrested and charged with 3rd degree murder and 2nd degree manslaughter. 2020-05-30 This is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution License. Give attribution to: Fibonacci Blue Date: 30 May 2020, 12:36 Source: Vigil for George Floyd at Chicago Avenue & 38th Street Author: Fibonacci Blue from Minnesota, USA

Importantly, participants in ‘Blackout Tuesday’ should not use the #blacklivesmatter or #blm hashtag because their posts will drown out valuable information.

The music industry is announcing a “Blackout Tuesday” in response to the death of George Floyd.

On Friday, May 29, just days after Floyd was suffocated by a Minneapolis police officer during an arrest, numerous music companies and artists began spreading a message on social media calling for a day to disconnect from work and reconnect with their communities in an effort to promote social change.

George Floyd died on May 25 in Minneapolis after a police officer placed his knee on Floyd’s neck for nearly 9 minutes, ignoring his pleas that he couldn’t breathe. The officer was eventually arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter on May 29. The three other police officers present at the scene, which was caught on camera, were fired for being complicit to the murder.

Protests have been rampant throughout the U.S. as well as the United Kingdom overseas. Many have erupted into violent scenes of looting and destruction.

Columbia Records was the first to take a stand in the music industry, publicly decrying injustices towards underserved populations. Chairman Ron Perry posted late on Thursday night (May 28): “We stand together with the Black community against all forms of racism, bigotry, and violence. Now, more than ever we must use our voices to speak up and challenge the injustices all around us.”

Other major music companies such as Atlantic Records, Capitol Records, Sony, Motown, Caroline and Interscope followed suit. All of these companies collectively represent major recording artists from the past century.

Capitol Records also announced they would donate to Color of Change: a progressive nonprofit civil rights advocacy organization that works to end practices that unfairly hold Black people back, and champions solutions that move society forward.

Under the hashtag #TheShowMustBePaused, another social media post read: “As gatekeepers of the culture, it’s our responsibility to not only come together to celebrate the wins, but also hold each other up during loss.”

The proposed blackout is set for Tuesday, June 2. What does it entail? Companies will not conduct business that day, in observance of George Floyd’s death and the need for racial equality.

Importantly, participants in ‘Blackout Tuesday’ should not use the #blacklivesmatter or #blm hashtag because their posts will drown out valuable information.

It also means some businesses will stop the music and put forth a dialogue on race instead:

“All of my shows are cancelled. I will air replays of conversations with community activists, politicians and revolutionary music,” Apple Music’s Ebro Darden captioned on Instagram.

“In the words of Dr. [Matin Luther] King, there comes a time when silence is betrayal,” read a post from Universal Music Group.


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