Activist group Industry Blackout sent an open letter to Capitol Records within days of the announcement that a contract had been awarded to FN Meka, stressing that the creation of the AI was
a direct insult to the black community and its culture.
[C’est] an amalgamation of crude stereotypes, derivative appropriations of black-skinned artists, with insults infused into the lyricscan we read in the letter.
The virtual musician, who looks like a black cyborg, repeatedly uses the word in
not in his songs. An Instagram post showing the virtual artist being beaten up by a police officer also sparked outrage.
Industry Blackout also denounces the virtual artist’s collaboration with rapper Gunna, who is awaiting trial in the United States on criminal charges that are evidenced, among other things, in his lyrics and social media posts.
[Il] is currently incarcerated for singing the same type of lyrics that this robot imitates. The difference is that your contrived rapper won’t face federal charges for it.the group said.
Note, however, that the rapper does not yet have the ability to sing. It is therefore a man belonging to the black community and whose identity has not been revealed who sings his words. But the music and lyrics are generated by an artificial intelligence that analyzes popular music.
Activists demanded that Capitol Records issue a public apology and that the AI rapper be removed from all platforms. The group also wants the proceeds generated by FN Meka to be donated to organizations that support young artists in the black community.
Capitol buckles under pressure
The record company complied by cutting ties with the rapper 10 days later and presented
his deepest apologies to the black community for his insensitivity. The company admitted to not asking enough questions before signing the virtual artist.
” We thank those who have provided us with constructive feedback over the past few days – your input was invaluable in reaching the decision to end this association. »
FN Meka didn’t just lose his contract with the record company. His Instagram account, which some 223,000 people follow, has been made private. The account’s bio reads ” Robot rapper not accepted by this world (the robot rapper not accepted in this world, in French).
His account is still active on TikTok, accumulating some 10.3 million subscribers and more than a billion views on his videos, with the same mention in his biography.
On Spotify, the avatar’s songs are listened to by more than half a million people monthly.