Society, by its very nature, is about group behaviour. The idea that we all have to work together for the better of everyone is as old as societies themselves. We all have our own sub-groups in which we move, and associate ourselves with people we like or need to know.
I’ve never been one for bias, in any situation. So, though I love the people who I would consider my own, I will never give preferential treatment where it counts. It isn’t productive, really. How good someone is at any given task is not determined by how much you like them, and this is an idea that people seriously need to understand in the British battle rapping community.
I constantly see people retweeting their friends battles, which is fine. Rarely will you see someone take an unfavourable stance on their friends’ battles, though. There is more Twitter beef or interaction than there are actual battles nowadays, and people let this cloud their vision of how good or bad someone can be. Callumboom’s legendarily dreadful performance against Impact was met with almost universal scorn on the Don’t Flop Facebook, but he had an army of never-before-seen friends cheering him on and defending him. It’s no good for the community. We need more genuine fans of the craft than the people performing the craft.
There’s a lot of people in the Don’t Flop scene who have each other’s backs to the point of grand bias, and it’s never anything short of cringeworthy seeing them comment on battles (If you think this is about you, you’re guilty of something whether I meant you or not). As for me? I wouldn’t give two shakes of a duck’s tail. I don’t care if my own flesh and blood steps in the ring, personally. If you’re not good, you’re not good. Quality control is something Don’t Flop seem to be cracking down on, and it’s about time, but we’re going to get nowhere if preferential treatment remains as ripe as it does.
You run the risk of alienating those wanting to join by making it seem like a club of mates. It’s not and it can’t afford to be. There needs to be a line drawn. Some people do not care to join in on all of the non-battle insults and banter, and that needs to be respected.
Another kind of bias is way more serious, and cliquey on a national scale.
Don’t Flop would not exist were it not for Americans and nor would hip hop. I am genuinely worried by the overwhelming amount of anti-Americanism that comes from the fans and the MCs. “Let’s show them Yanks a thing or two.” The crowd for Illmaculate vs. Tony D was so disgustingly biased that you could almost taste it in the air. This is a grand shame, because the battle was phenomenal. It was as though people had already decided to cheer one man more because he came out of a vagina in this country. That needs to stop, fast. If it doesn’t, the league runs the risk of not attracting certain big American battlers.
Whether it’s nationalistic bias or one based on friendship, you seriously need to knock it off and pay attention to the bars. I don’t care how much you like someone. JUDGE FAIRLY.
I support quality. I don’t look at passports.
If you make great music, I’ll buy it. If you’re a good battler, I’ll support you. What I will not do is treat you like you’re fam if you’re not. I don’t particularly care if you’re a Londoner or not. Be good.
This league’s MCs, and indeed the country’s, are learning to rely on location bias. “YES! HE’S FROM WHERE I AM!” Who cares?
DNA vs. Eurgh was an incredible battle on BOTH counts. It was remarkably close. However, try finding a comment that doesn’t involve saying, “UK REPRESENT! DFAFD.!” and I will concede. Who cares where anyone’s from? It’s not war, people.
Talent should always prevail, not nepotism.
Things need to change or I sincerely fear for the future of this country’s battle scene.