In today’s opinion-based culture, artists are no stranger to criticism, especially on social media. But when one Canadian blogger learned that some lines shouldn’t be crossed the hard way when she blatantly age-shamed megastar Nicki Minaj last month.
Following aspiring writer, Wanda Thompson’s tweet criticizing Minaj and Minaj’s publicized comeback, Thompson, in what many fans believed was clearly a case of online bullying, got a taste of her own medicine.
The blogger tried to backtrack with the following response to Minaj, writing, “I 100 per cent stand by everything I said about your music and it wasn’t a malicious jab, it was a critique. I’ve seen multiple people come at you left on this app. Whether it be about your hair, your body or your music and I went to bat for you on numerous occasions.”
Yet the internet does not easily forgive and forget. Meanwhile, Thompson has received numerous threats from Minaj fans as well as losing her writing internship and taken to airing her grievances on Twitter.
While some backlash is to be expected (mess with the bulls, you get the horns and whatnot), unfortunately, some anonymous internet trolls did indeed go too far. While Minaj’s response was acidic and biting, in no way did she promote violence against the blogger. However, certain individuals posted messages that could be considered threatening including those who posted her address, personal email, cell phone number, and photos of the blogger’s daughter taken from her Instagram.
In an article with New York Times, Thompson said she “wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy” and was “physically drained” and “mentally depleted” from the entire situation.
Following the interview, the hashtag #IStandWithWanna started to trend on Twitter.
Perhaps Thompson has learned an important lesson that will help her if she ever does become a real writer someday. Critiquing artists’ music is acceptable (and even often appreciated), but there’s no room for age-shaming if one wants to have journalistic credibility.
While this will likely blow over as soon as Twitter moves onto the next crisis, Wanna might “wanna” choose her words more carefully next time.