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DJ Akademiks vs. Desus & Mero: Is the Internet becoming a bigger platform than Television?


Television, one of the most powerful technological advancements of the early-20th Century, invented by Philo Farnsworth & John Logie Baird; 2 renown pioneers of their time, who left a legacy on Earth that infinitely changed the outcome of the future – for better or worse, time will tell. The television and it’s capabilities was nothing more than a figment of the imagination of a few aware individuals before it came into fruition. As time caught up with imaginative intelligence, tangible resources would be created for such devices to be brought to light; the tech revolution being an effect of the industrial revolution, later becoming it’s catalyst. Still, it took 22 years after the television was created, before it’s creator, Philo Farnsworth, found true meaning in it’s societal use; during Apollo 11 – the 1st moon landing ever (inspired by the American governments space race verse Russia), his wife – Elma “Pem” Farnsworth, stating at that moment, he turned towards her and said “Pem…this has made it all worthwhile”. Up until then, he felt as if the programming being presented wasn’t intellectually stimulating.

Another monumental moment for the American government in relations to “T.V”, happened on September, 26th,1960 . America watched as television became a deciding factor in the Kennedy-Nixon presidential election. Being it was the 1st time an election debate was live on T.V, many citizens had yet to acquiesce to the future, relying on radio to listen to the debate; to cut the story short, those who we’re tuning in to the radio thought Nixon won, but those who were fortunate to have a T.V during that time, perceived Kennedy as the victor, overwhelmingly showing up to vouch for him at the voting booth. John F. Kennedy would soon after become the 35th President of the United States of America.

Fast-forward into the 21st Century, in the 90th year since the physical conception of the television was officially birthed, we have seen “T.V” be the cause for the revolution of industries from film to sports, allowing art to escape regional borders, but also exploited by religious leaders and politicians by means of rigorous propaganda. Before news reports became “fake news”, television was the staple for your day-to-day information on all things going on in the world, and out. With the public’s increasing awareness of the madness going on behind the scene of the platforms on television, and a lot of these industry executives abusing the power of the T.V, more and more people are turning to a new age technological advancement for their daily consumption: The Internet.

No one truly understands the capabilities of the internet due to its adolescent. A few tings we learned since it’s official launch on August, 6th, 1991, is that we have free reign on the internet, free speech can be directly practiced & promoted, and most importantly, the public now has access to the wealth of knowledge necessary to elevate ourselves, yet has been hidden for ages. You can receive your daily news within seconds after a journalist has done his/her report. As a matter fact, look at the 45th President, Donald J. Trump, the internet is his preferred communication method when it comes to informing the public – specifically Twitter.

Who better to understand the power of T.V than media magnet, Donald Trump, he was 14 at the time of the 1st ever televised debate with Kennedy vs. Nixon. He used television to host his harem of woman in the Miss Universe pageants. He used television to promote his empire, saturating his appeal with shows such as ‘The Apprentice’; prepping America for the firing spree he’s on now that he’s in the Oval Office. He absolutely understood and took advantage of television, now using those ingenious methods on the modern-day media outlets of our time: Social Media.

As of now, Donald J. Trump is King Twitter. I truly believe his election was our ‘Kennedy-Nixon’ moment. Even when his own intelligence staff advises him to put the phone down, Trump still understands the power behind the Internet. Trump is just apart of the plethora of minds that have been able to harness the power of the Internet to gain a following, by understanding that a media personality is actually a more trusted source than a news outlet because they embody the main reason people are leaving the T.V behind for the Internet, to have a direct-line communication to what’s important. Don’t forget Trump was/is a media personality (aside from the business) too.

Look how close you can get to these media personalities with out physically stepping foot into their reality. You can catch them on Facebook, Instagram, & Youtube, all having ‘live’ capabilities, enabling you to converse with these media personalities just as quick as they logon. Some of these personalities were able to successfully use their internet platform to elevate them to a higher-paying position on television. Charlamagne Tha God being a pioneer in this arena. After being laid-off from working for Wendy Williams, him and Lil Duval started a Youtube series, that would later get picked up by MTV, becoming “State of The Union”, which never premiered, but still got both of them in the Viacom building, where they were able to land on Guy Code. That was during the peak of television though. With T.V on the descent, Charlamagne has now set his eyes back on the Internet, starting up his “Brilliant Idiots” podcast, with Guy Code compadre, Andrew Shultz. Shultz himself has recognized the power of the Internet, by releasing his how stand-up special directly to Youtube titled “4:4:1”. He also stars on a series titled “There’s Johnny”, streamed on the Internet-based entertainment host, Hulu.

Where the internet started to gain momentum though, was when Viceland made its way from the depths of Youtube, to cable-network T.V. They also didn’t forget to bring some media personalities with them, Desus & Mero being the leaders of the group. Before locking in the deal with Viceland to be the premiere late-night show, Desus & Mero we’re podcast hustling with their internet series “Bodega Boys”, published originally through Youtube. This brings us to their quarrel with Youtube media mogul, DJ Akademiks. Akademkis himself has never been on television, but has been able to garner a following of +3 Million fans across all social media platforms. His minute to minute coverage of the Hip-Hop industry epitomizes the benefits and cons of receiving news via Internet, being it’s quick to surface, but not necessarily reliable He also has personable relationships with the rising stars of the music industry. After building up his brand, Ak took his talents to a successful rap magazine that has also reached to the Internet to touch a new demographic, Complex. There he was able to establish himself as an official media personality, sparring with the polarizing entertainer turned media mogul, Joe Budden, on the hit show “Everyday Struggle”. Budden, also hosting his own podcast (The Joe Budden Podcast) show through Youtube, recently walked away from his gig on “Everyday Struggle”, to elevate to a new television platform – REVOLT, locking in a $5-Million contract with them in the process. The situations behind him leaving “Everyday Struggle” caused social media to go into a frenzy, with the public sensing the internal chaos at Complex, competitors of the culture seen an opportunity to capitalize on the moment.

That’s when the shots came, Akademiks getting caught in the cross-hairs of Desus & Mero. This led to a back and forth between the two, with Mero attempting to stunt on Ak by stating the fact that his show is on T.V, while Akademiks, in limbo with Complex in contract negotiations, is throwing shots from Twitch. Akademiks refuted his argument by stating that Mero’s point is invalid going into 2018, being that the Internet is quickly becoming the go-to for communication outlets, from him to the President of America. My conclusion would be that we are at the intersection of where the end of the illusion & power of television is being met wit the rise and freedom of the internet. What do you think?

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