What’s at stake?

banner - rock for relief
There was a benefit for Moore tornado victims at the Kansas City Power & Light District last night. And, it being a benefit, nothing stayed on-topic. At some point during the show, Slimfast, a DJ for 96.5 the Buzz, allegedly tore down a banner for the Kansas City Local Artists Radio Show, an online streaming radio program. People are collectively losing their minds on Facebook, as well as in a post over at Day to Day ASA.

I appreciate the thoughts behind this but the “Apparently they do not support freedom of speech either!” line kills me. You can delete anything you want to off your Facebook page. It’s your subpage of a private website ran by a multi-million dollar corporation which receives ad revenue from other multi-million (if not billion) dollar industries.

True: it’s absolute weak sauce to do so, rather than engage and explain, but not silencing free speech. Same goes for the venue. KC Live! isn’t a public space — it’s a private zone for entertainment and the purpose of selling alcohol in bars. If the Buzz was a sponsor of the event, and the Kansas City Local Artist Radio wasn’t, then the Buzz had every contractual right to prevent promotion of a competing entity (being as how they have their Homegrown Buzz show).

Think of it like this: if a brewery sponsors a show, such as Budweiser, then whomever the representative of that brewery is at a show will remove any competitor’s banners hung at the same place. If there were a Boulevard banner hung next to the Budweiser banner, you can bet that the rep’s bosses will have him pulling it down, post-haste.

It’s just as likely that Kansas City Local Artist Radio took advantage of the situation and used a large event with many local artists to promote their website and online radio station. I’m not saying definitively it was one way or the other, but you can’t just see someone tear down a banner and assume the worst.