It is 2016 and in the wake of probate season, we the editorial staff at WatchTheYard.com, want to pose the following question to the undergrads: “Why are you editing in songs with lyrics that go directly against your fraternity and sorority missions and morals as the background music to your probate videos?”
We can all agree that a probate is one of the most important moments in a person’s experience in Black Greekdom. It is the culmination of an individual’s hard work and a celebration of their new life as a member of a sacred bond, a family of people who have all worked hard to prove that they are following the same mission in life, to help others and serve the community.
If this is what you believe to be true, and we hope it is, because if not, we need to question what are you doing in your respective org and who let you in in the first place, then why would you attach songs to your probates with lyrics that are the exact opposite of what your org is about? Like really, think about this for a moment, every NPHC org includes something about uplifting the community and being role models for the younger generations in their missions. Why would you add a song about “selling crack out the bando”, “fucking niggas up” and murdering people in cold blood as the soundtrack to arguably one of the most important ceremonies of your fraternity/sorority experience. An experience that is supposed to encapsulate and display your commitment to this pledge to the world. Your teachers, mentees, employers, old heads and non-greek members are watching these things. Just ask yourself, are delegitimizing your entire org’s mission.
“BGLO’s using music with explicit lyrics about trapping in their probate videos is like CALM (Citizens Against Legalizing Marijuana) using Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa, or Curen$$y as the background music in their awareness commercials.”
Aren’t we supposed to be the antithesis of these lyrics? Aren’t we supposed to be the future governors, civil rights activists, mayors, top businessmen and women, lawyers, judges, doctors, professors, inventors etc…? We are in college, in a leadership role, you have an above average GPA, you are smarter than this. We get upset when people who don’t even understand NPHC culture do not add “Fraternity, Inc.” or “Sorority, Inc.” when announcing our org’s name, but this does not strike any sort of alarm to us?
Think about it this way: 10 years from now you are going to want to show your daughter or son your probate video and guess what? It is either going to be deleted from YouTube for copyright infringement(you should really look into this before you publish your videos with music that you don’t own) or you are going to have to cover your kid’s ears every five seconds because the song contains so many obscenities.
We are saying this to you because we care with one thing in mind. We at WatchTheYard.com are the center of Black Greekdom online, we reflect the yard, we are you and you are us, our writers enjoy trap music too. We are college students and college grads, this is how we all get turn up and party, it is part of the culture. Just know that you are documenting chapter history and these videos will be what people see generations from now when they want to learn more about your history. Our website is both publicly and privately documenting this history in a way that has never been done before. Right now we have catalogued hundreds of step shows and probates from the 80s and 90s from when handheld cameras were first available to black students and we are single-handedly preserving the video history of a whole part of the black experience that has never been collected in this size EVER. People who crossed in the 70s, 80s, and 90s are going into their closets and digitalizing old video they have tucked away so that it can become a part of the collection we are creating. This giant project of preserving the video aspect of Black Greekdom is something that no museum, database or library in the world can compare to. Just realize that your 2016 probate videos are also a part of this collection. You are making history and are choosing how people will look at you, your chapter, your org and Black Greekdom decades from now.
We just want you to know that, as a editorial team that cares and sees every probate each year across the country, we are seeing this happen and are a bit concerned. We are worried. We understand that the music is an important part of your probate recap videos but please if nothing else, use the clean version of the song or the instrumental when creating it. If you want to go crazy hard with the music, do it in your stroll videos, not the probates. Your school administration sees these probate videos and it is not a good look for you or your org if there is cursing, talk about committing felonies and the objectification of women all over the place in the most important videos of your undergrad involvement in your org.
Just keeping it 100% with ya’ll, we are for the most part still going to post the videos because we are a digital reflection of what is going on on yards across the country but we want it to be known that we cringe every time we see this editing choice made and will not promote these videos the same way we promote other ones. We reflect you and your decisions, this is now up to the individuals who are making these video to decide.
WatchTheYard.com Editorial Staff
“We do it for the culture”
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