ARIAs cement their irrelevance by ignoring social media

Last night’s entire event played out like one of those prolonged montages – a chance to pay our respects and remember the late Australian Music industry.

The Arias are traditionally lame. It’s just the Logies with more tattoos, isn’t it?

I was especially appalled by its use as a vehicle for music acts with new albums coming out. I used to have a crush on Missy Higgins, but she has been completely off the musical radar for about four years so her appearance was largely based on nostalgia and because she has a new album pending. The nostalgia continued with extended Billy Thorpe tributes, The Wiggles reaching the Hall of Fame, and then it got truly bizarre when Delta serenaded every music artist who has ever died – right back to Dame Joan Sutherland!


Dame Joan Sutherland - a posterchild for the forward-thinking ARIAs

Twitter had no presence on the night, and so, with the broadcast failing to lead the conversation, the #Arias feed became an entertaining sideline of barbs and witticisms. It becomes a real problem when tweets taking the piss are undeniably more entertaining than the actual on-air event.

The ARIAs facebook page also failed to make a real dent. It has just 17,000 fans and most comments (85) came for a pic of Altiyan Childs.

How unsurprising that the producers didn’t care about social media. The night has always been a few years behind whatever is cool.

The Telegraph painted an even uglier picture back in October, saying

“The dwindling ARIAs are a microcosm of Australian music as a whole. The glitter has gone. Once, the charismatic superstar power of a key group of stellar artists kept the whole industry revolving – but today, there is a distinct staleness at the top of the charts and a general malaise across the genres, from pop to hip-hop.” Read more…

In the same article, Sarah ‘Superjesus’ McLeod says

“We are definitely in a pickle, it sucks being a musician right now.”

Indeed, the Arias’ national irrelevance is confirmed each year in the following day’s ratings report.

@MJGAL: #ARIAs ratings are in. 369,000 tuned in. (almost half last years audience)

The industry is in a different kind of pickle. Record sales continue to plummet. The labels keep dumping staff…

So, where did it all go wrong?

    • Was it the moment Guy Sebastian shaved his afro? (Does anyone like his head better how it is now?)
    • Was it the removal of the A4-size ARIA charts from record store counters? (What gives? No one starts up iTunes just to check the charts, guys.)
    • Was it the astronomic rise of concert ticket prices thanks to a few large promoters running an oligopoly? (I paid $100 for U2 to bring me a spaceship. I shouldn’t pay that for Roxette at the Entertainment Centre.)
    • Was it the disappearance of our most lovable music presenter, Jabba, from Channel V? (It’s not too late to go back, Jabba.)
    • Was it Australian Idol? (You can’t beat the emptiness of realising all those singers you thought would make it are now back on the scrapheap… )

Anyone have any other ideas?

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