The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Viewpoint – Censorship in game highlights bigger issue

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By Michael Foster-Sanders/campus editor

“Culture vulturing” is nothing new to hip-hop, and the latest perpetrator to commit the act is Electronic Arts with its censoring of Colin Kaepernick’s name on its Madden football video game to appease the NFL and people who didn’t like his stance to protest injustice.

“Feed me to the wolves, now I lead the pack and s—. You boys all cap, I’m more Colin Kaepernick.”

The lyric is from YG’s “Big Bank” from Big Sean’s verse on the song, but when Madden fans turn on their gaming systems, they will hear this instead:

“Feed me to the wolves, now I lead the pack and s—.”

Yes, EA Sports scrubbed the Kaepernick reference from the song, saying they didn’t have the rights to include Kaepernick since he was not in the NFL. One could chop this up to an honest mistake as the company came out and with a press release when word of the lyric change went out, but it was discovered the company also did the same for the 2017 iteration of the game’s soundtrack with Mike WiLL Made-It’s Bar Soap when Kaepernick was part of the NFL.

“She be hopin’ that I take a knee like Kaepernick, yes.”

Now the scrubbed lyric:

“She be hopin’ that, yes.”

The artist who penned those lyrics condemned EA Sports and the NFL for censoring their lyrics without permission. Celebrity radio host Charlamagne Tha God and others via social media outlets called for a boycott of Madden ‘19. The backlash forced EA to put the song lyrics back in the game via an online patch but not without leaving a sour taste with some gamers.

 The big question is why these companies want to use hip-hop culture to sell its products but don’t want the social commentary that comes with it.

These companies have to know that they can’t use the culture to their benefit and then silence it to appease people who don’t care about hip-hop and what it represents, which is the poor and disenfranchised taking a stance against the injustice and oppression going on in the world.

Ironically, that’s the same thing Kaepernick took a knee for.

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