As far as startling revelations go, news that MTV has dropped "Music Television" from its brand ranks right up there with the shocking results of Michael Jackson's recent autopsy, which revealed that the King of Pop was indeed rather gaunt at the time of his death.
Anyone who's caught even ten minutes of programming can tell you that it's devolved into a steady stream of mindless drivel -- entertaining drivel, mind you, with such programs as Jersey Shore, for instance, but drivel nonetheless -- that loosely falls into the realm of reality television, despite only occasionally approximating actual reality.
Fact is, music is and has been an afterthought for years. (If the network truly wants to rebrand itself with the notion of embodying truth in advertising in mind, it should just go ahead and add an "EM" and "P" to its logo). Inane as it may be, though, let's be real here: In the YouTube-era, you have to admit that the whole idea of having a station exclusively dedicated to playing music videos seems sort of antiquated now, doesn't it? It's time came and went like pager technology. Who needs a beeper now, for chrissakes, when you have a smart phone?
Ultimately, the station has simply modified its template to appeal to the youth of today. Back then, as JJ Jackson put it in a pitch video to prospective advertisers (posted below): "This is an age group, a generation, that has expressed itself through its music. It has grown up with television, and if you want to reach these young adults, talk to them through music. Reach them on the channel they were born to watch."
Considering that subsequent generations were weaned on trash TV, the network's current programming make absolute sense -- nevermind the fact that MTV had had a huge hand in shaping today's disposable zeitgeist.
While we're on the subject of startling revelations, here's another: The loudest of the network's detractors? They aren't exactly in the desired demographic -- and haven't been for years. Not for nothing, but the people who tune in today hadn't even taken their first breaths yet when the Moonman first planted his flag. So why not drop the charade and just call it what it is? They don't know the difference, and it doesn't really matter anymore anyway.
"All music. All video. Accept no substitutes. MTV. Music Television."
"If hatin' is your occupation, I've probably got a full-time job for you."
-- The Situation
AND NOW ...
"This is an age group, a generation, that has expressed itself through its music. It has grown up with television, and if you want to reach these young adults, talk to them through music. Reach them on the channel they were born to watch." - JJ Jackson
THE ORIGINAL CONCEPT, AS SOLD BY THE ORIGINAL VJs