A few days ago I wrote an admittedly nostalgic post about MTV. I fondly recounted the origin of the network and how, at least in the early days, MTV helped to shape my musical knowledge and tastes. That was last week. This week, I am not feeling as generous. Yesterday, Van Toffler, President of MTV Networks, stated that the network was no longer interested in having members of Generation X as part of its audience. “We’re pushing Generation X out,” Toffler said. “We’re slaves to our different audiences, for MTV that’s millennials, who are vastly different than Generation X; they’re definitely less cynical — they’re more civic-minded.”
Okay, I get it. Don’t have to tell me twice. I am no longer a desirable demographic for MTV. That’s fine, but did you really have to announce it? Hey Van, the last time I checked (two seconds ago, on Google) you are also the president of VH1 and VH1 Classic — do you want me to watch those channels? Or am I too pessimistic to get For the Love of Ray J, Let’s Talk About Pep and Celebrity Rehab? Perhaps I am also now too jaded to enjoy Behind the Music?
Is it ever a good idea for a brand to go out-of-the-way to create ill will? Doesn’t seem like a smart strategy to me.
Van (do you mind if I call you Van? You look to be about my age, so I am figuring you won’t), you insulted me and my (your) generation by saying we are a cynical bunch (your words) which by definition means: 1. like or characteristic of a cynic; distrusting or disparaging the motives of others. 2. showing contempt for accepted standards of honesty or morality by one’s actions, esp. by actions that exploit the scruples of others. 3. bitterly or sneeringly distrustful, contemptuous, or pessimistic.