Diddy recently met with Wizkid, at Diddy’s mansion in Los Angeles and felt so ecstatic about the meeting, he just had to share the news on Instagram.
On the Instagram video he posted on his page, the first thing we hear him say is:
“Young Black King, Look at him. Fly. Touchdown came to see the God. You know what I’m saying?”
He also provides captions in case we all missed it.
What nonsense with Diddy stating that Wizkid, an African man, came to “see the God”? How very disrespectful, arrogant, egotistical, and a reinforcement of condescending stereotypes and superiority complex Westerners and Western leaders who engage with Africans tend to do. You call him a Black King but even as a King, he is subject to you, “the God?”
Diddy then took it a step further by promising he would be “coming back home” to the Motherland and he would not “wait too long” to visit.
Diddy “the God”, I think, really believes that if he shares an Instagram video of himself dancing to Fela Kuti or giving shout-outs to popular African artists of the moment (Mr. Eazi, Falz the Bad Guy, Wizkid etc.), then he can avoid scrutiny on what exactly he is doing to be down with Africa’s entertainment industry and artists, the way he seems to want to claim he is doing.
I again find his statements very condescending, exploitative, and frankly irritating. Additional reasons for my view include:
- Diddy has a pattern and practice of being this patronizing with African artists. In July 2014, nine months after the launch of his Revolt TV and Revolt Music Conference (RMC), Diddy had the chance to meaningfully engage with Africa’s industry and its artists with collaborations etc., and in so doing, help put the industry on the global map. He didn’t. Instead, we saw him professing his love for Nigeria, dubbing himself “Oluwadiddy,” and simply exploiting and soliciting subscription to Revolt TV through sound-byte type interviews Revolt conducted with Nigerian artists Davido, and Tiwa Savage during their visit to the states for the BET awards. In fact, Diddy was persuasive enough to have Davido, a rising global star at the time, wear all Revolt TV branded clothing to market Revolt to Davido’s massive audience, all allegedly at no cost to Revolt.
- To date, neither Diddy, Revolt TV, or Revolt Music Conference, have had a true dialogue with Africa’s entertainment industry on the issues that affect it, collaborations and partnerships, and monetization of its intellectual property assets in a mutually beneficial way.
- So, the reality is that unless there is substantial revenue flowing from Africa to Diddy (like Diddy’s 2017 Revolt-Kwesé TV broadcasting rights deal), or a potential exploitation of African artists to significantly benefit Diddy (whether through publicity or otherwise), Diddy couldn’t be bothered about Africa.
Diddy’s lack of genuine respect and interest in Africa’s artists and entertainment industry is underscored by the fact that in the four years he has been busy paying lip service to Africa and its talents, Jay-Z’s Tidal has launched in Nigeria, Jay-Z has signed Tiwa Savage to a Roc Nation management deal in the states, Sony has launced in Nigeria and signed recording deals with Davido and Wizkid, and Universal recently launched in Nigeria and signed several Nigerian artists. These groups doing business in Nigeria is not without its challenges, including from the talent side. But, at a minimum, they are puting their mouths where their money is.
So, can somebody please tell Diddy to miss Africa’s artists and its entertainment industry with his condescending statements and patronizing conduct, already? Thank you.
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Ms. Uduak is also a Partner and Co-Founder of Ebitu Law Group, P.C. where she handles her law firm’s intellectual property law, media, business, fashion, and entertainment law practice areas. For over seventeen years, as an attorney, she has litigated a wide variety of cases in California courts. She has also handled a variety of entertainment deals for clients in the USA, Africa, and Asia. Her work and contributions to the creative industry have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Bar Association, The American University School of Law and featured in prestigious legal publications in the USA including ABA Journal and The California Lawyer Magazine.
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