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Canadian radio stations are pulling "Baby, It's Cold Outside" from their holiday playlists

Oct 25, 2017
1,158
0
Canada
The thread is about a radio station pulling a song because of its misogynistic message/tone. If you believe that should be the standard going forward and that any song open to interpretation of being problematic should be removed then why can’t we discuss other songs or genre of music that should also be removed according to this standard?
Because for all intents and purposes, most of them have already been voluntarily excluded from several radio stations.

Canada has had a discussion about this with Dire Straits' "Money For Nothing" a while back and required significant debate before landing on the conclusion that it was up to radio stations themselves to make the call of whether or not to play it, since while it contains a hate speech slur, the song's context is that the song is meant to portray the words of a deplorable person who's jealous of the "easy" rock star lifestyle who we're not supposed to like or sympathize with and the use of that word re-enforces that.

You know your George Michael but you'd be wrong! Song just came up on the radio last night (late night lunar rotation but still).
What if someone notices and they extend the ban to Last Christmas !
Though he does say that "he remains a gentleman" after those verses.
Why would they extend the ban to a completely different song with entirely different lyrics from a band that just happens to include George Michael? That situation you're describing beggars belief.

If someone wanted to take that particular song off the radio, though, I wouldn't fight them on it and practically nothing of value would be lost.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,158
0
Canada
2 additional things:

Yeah, Santa Baby has had a reputation for depicting women as materialistic gold-diggers using their feminine wiles to get what they want for a while now, so I imagine that's going to be the next one down. And I'm OK with that, if only because it's not a terribly great song.

Also, while a lot of the discussion is around the woman in this song, we haven't spent a lot of time about how the song re-enforces toxic masculinity.

Fellas defending this song, do you really want a song that furthers the stereotype that men view sex like a Man Scout merit badge and that a man's pride is so easily wounded by not getting with someone he wants to bone?
 

L Thammy

Spacenoid
Member
Oct 25, 2017
11,261
0
The thread is about a radio station pulling a song because of its misogynistic message/tone. If you believe that should be the standard going forward and that any song open to interpretation of being problematic should be removed then why can’t we discuss other songs or genre of music that should also be removed according to this standard?
I'm just going to point out that you're free to post a thread or otherwise start a discussion about any other song that you find concerning. The existence of one conversation does not somehow mean that other conversation is not allowed to happen.
 
Aug 2, 2018
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Are there other popular songs that discuss a woman saying no and being pursued anyways (via verbal manipulation)? This thread is specifically about the song itself (in the context of saying "no" and the current MeToo movement) and the radio station's choice not to play it. It seems to me if there are other songs you take issue with, maybe creating a separate thread would be a better course of action.

Literally not at all what is happening here.
The standard should be that the station does what it thinks best and the public decides if they were right via the free market. Also like I said in the other post the problem with this specific song is not so much that it is insulting or misogynistic but that it normalizes the "No means yes" point of view that often results in date rape and sexual assault. Another option would be to play a message at the beginning of the song reminding men that the song is a product of its time and " No means No" Always
Why the shell game? Why can’t you just say you support the removal of all problematic music from the radio? Do you think it’s some sort of gotcha statement I’m after? Just looking for a little consistency.
 
Oct 27, 2017
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Context is everything.

In this case, the context revolves around gender norms/standards in 1944. She's really does want to fuck him (maybe just a half a drink more) but she's so worried that everyone will think she's a slut.

On the other hand, in today's context it does sound rapey, or at least sounds like pressure and coercion (that much is certain in any context).

I'll say this: the song only comes under fire because of its association with Christmas. There are so, so many pop/rock/country/rap songs on the radio that are downright disgusting, implying or outright stating far worse (and many are actually considered "classics") and no one is pulling them from the stations.


Brown Sugar, how come you taste so good
Brown Sugar, just like a young girl should


That song.... yikes.

Or

You come on like a dream, peaches and cream
Lips like strawberry wine
You're sixteen, you're beautiful and you're mine


You're all ribbons and curls, ooh, what a girl
Eyes that sparkle and shine
You're sixteen, you're beautiful and you're mine


You're my baby, you're my pet
We fell in love on the night we met
You touched my hand, my heart went pop
Ooh, when we kissed I could not stop


You walked out of my dreams and into my arms
Now you're my angel divine
You're sixteen, you're beautiful and you're mine


More fun examples, many of them worse (rap is not subtle...)

https://thegrapevine.theroot.com/the-problematic-playlist-songs-with-questionable-lyric-1826656613

N.W.A - She Swallowed It

Holy shit, this song. Not sure if it was playrd on the radio but I know it was popular. Some samples:

Because the dumb bitch licks out the asshole
And she'll let you videotape her
And if you got a gang of niggas, the bitch would let you rape her
She likes suckin' on dicks, and lickin' up nut
And they even take the broomstick up the butt
Just to say that she did it with a rapper
But the pussy was more fishy than red snapper
"But how many licks would it take," she asks
"To make MC Ren start gooshin' up vanilla shakes?"


I couldn't see her face, all I saw was her pussy and her chest
I wanted to see the face, I felt I oughtta
Peep over the seat, Oh shit! It's the preacher's daughter!
And she's only 14 and a ho'
But the bitch sucks dick like a specialized pro
She looked at me, I was surprised
But wasn't passin' up the chance of my dick gettin' baptized
I told the bitch to do it quick
You little ho' hurry up and suck my dick!
 
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Oct 26, 2017
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Outrage from people who can't or won't take time to understand the song and its lyrics. A song about external pressures to conform to what society deems, is an acceptable image of a proper woman.

The drink part, for anyone that watches old movies, is a winking excuse by the woman (towards the man) for her behavior and desire. She's fast falling for him, and the promise of the evening. She's giving into her desire. And in a coy, playful way she attributes all the reason to the drink.



This is why dating Era is the mess that it is.
Good post
 
Dec 25, 2017
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Until this thread I also had a negative perception of the song and thought it was about rape. I think because I've never listened to it outside of a movie or when its playing over store speakers. I hate most Christmas music and never gave it enough focus to actually think about the lyrics beyond "jeez he is really pushy and she sounds like she just wants to leave".
The better analysis in this thread has completely changed my perspective.
 
Oct 27, 2017
855
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Why the shell game? Why can’t you just say you support the removal of all problematic music from the radio? Do you think it’s some sort of gotcha statement I’m after? Just looking for a little consistency.
For starters is not being removed from the radio It is being removed from a Few stations. Looking for consistency well then why don't you have an issue with christian stations not playing Eminem? Stop overflowing the issue, just let the station be and listen to the song trough other station's or itunes.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,916
0
USA
Why the shell game? Why can’t you just say you support the removal of all problematic music from the radio? Do you think it’s some sort of gotcha statement I’m after? Just looking for a little consistency.
What are you even trying to do here. "Problematic" is incredibly subjective. Do I wish there were less misogynistic songs on the radio? Yes and I wish radio stations would pick and choose songs that have less or none of it. But I have no idea what point you're trying to make.
 
Dec 8, 2017
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Why would they extend the ban to a completely different song with entirely different lyrics from a band that just happens to include George Michael?
Man, that was just a joke in the light of, say, the recent calls to boycott the whole lovecraftian horror genre because of the author's ideas and other such exhortations to dismiss some artist's entire production because of their stance on certain topics.
 
Aug 2, 2018
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The original quote I posted made a joke pointing out that most people raising a fuss about this will gladly go back to listening to music filled with other misogynistic tones without batting an eye. I simply expanded on that and was asking if those in favor of removing this song support removal of all offensive songs. Why stop at one? But everyone seems to dance around saying all offensive music should be removed.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,916
0
USA
The original quote I posted made a joke pointing out that most people raising a fuss about this will gladly go back to listening to music filled with other misogynistic tones without batting an eye. I simply expanded on that and was asking if those in favor of removing this song support removal of all offensive songs. Why stop at one? But everyone seems to dance around saying all offensive music should be removed.
That's because literally no one is saying it. You just weirdly believe we are for some reason. Again, "offensive" and "problematic" are almost meaningless descriptors in this context. I still have no clue as what point you're trying to make.

If someone listen to music that has some music misogyny in it, they're now disallowed from voicing their opinion about whether or not a song that can easily be mistaken as rape in which the man is exerting his power over the woman.. Should be played by a radio station?
 
Aug 27, 2018
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The woman in the song is the one who's actually exerting her agency. She's got the dude on a string.

Removing it from their playlist is pure grandstanding, and misinformed, illiterate, mysogynist grandstanding at that.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,749
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London
I don't mind it, the bloke sounds a bit creepy, but he's meant to be a bit desperate for a leg over and the woman is sending mixed signals. i get why people don't like it and that's fair enough, but i don't think lyrics have to be virtuous all the time.
 
Oct 27, 2017
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I'm just going to point out that you're free to post a thread or otherwise start a discussion about any other song that you find concerning. The existence of one conversation does not somehow mean that other conversation is not allowed to happen.
Don't bother engaging with that poster, it's not a good-faith argument. People do this all the time, pretend to critique any kind of advocacy or social change because it isn't perfect or consistent enough, when their real goal is to deflect from the current discussion to shut it down.
 
Oct 25, 2017
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2 additional things:

Yeah, Santa Baby has had a reputation for depicting women as materialistic gold-diggers using their feminine wiles to get what they want for a while now, so I imagine that's going to be the next one down. And I'm OK with that, if only because it's not a terribly great song.

Also, while a lot of the discussion is around the woman in this song, we haven't spent a lot of time about how the song re-enforces toxic masculinity.

Fellas defending this song, do you really want a song that furthers the stereotype that men view sex like a Man Scout merit badge and that a man's pride is so easily wounded by not getting with someone he wants to bone?
You realize that when you put the song in context, the woman in it really wants to stay but is actually struggling against that time's cultural and societal norms, as well as an overbearing and controlling family?
That's why in it, at the end, the duet combines and they both sing "It's cold outside", among other things.
 
OP
OP
MMarston
Oct 27, 2017
4,889
0
I'll say this: the song only comes under fire because of its association with Christmas.
This is likely a big part of their rationale behind the pull for anyone wondering why they haven't nuked half of rap and metal from the airwaves.

A lot more wide-ranging people are more likely to turn the radio on this Christmas for this particular playlist that's gonna be running for almost the entire day part of the day, whereas you really have to actively look for any other genre this season (if you even bother considering the internet 'n all). Does that itself justify pull? Eh, it's kinda shaky reasoning and there's still a whole argument to be made for the visibility of more modern songs + their problematic lyrics. But that's the best guess I can come up regarding this.

Either way, I'm not gonna miss the song even with some of the context explanations being thrown around this thread. I still find it rather off-putting.

Also, minor update, Corus Entertainment has also followed suit.

Corus Entertainment won’t air the song on its five holiday format stations across the country.
 
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Oct 27, 2017
192
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Tn, USA
Why publicly announce they are pulling the song? They just ensured that WAY more people listen to it with an ear towards the lyrics and either decide the radio station is goofy or that yeah, this is a creepy song. Just cut it and don't say anything and there would be no issue as there are dozens of other winter/holiday songs to play. So it sounds more like a publicity stunt than an actual attempt to clean up their playlists, especially if it doesn't extend to all their songs (like damn near every 80's hair metal song).

And in 50 years stuff like "Hit me baby one more time" are gonna need the same contextual explanation. Though I seem to recall some debate about the lyrics even then the song was released. Even things like "Genie in a bottle" with the line "you gotta rub me the right way" implies that the woman's consent depends on what the man does, and that there is a trial and error component (the rest of the lyrics reinforce this) that encourages persistence despite initial failure. MANY songs have very problematic lyrics and messages, but the question is, does anyone (other than a very few) actually listen to them and consider what the message actual is?
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,065
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Texas
This is the most absurd thing I’ve heard since the Peanuts Thanksgiving special character, Franklin, fiasco. This reminds me of the people that would gather in the corner of a church, listen to rap music, and decide what other people should listen to.
 
Oct 27, 2017
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I mean, there's already enough Christmas songs to fill the whole year with but this is ridiculous... Don't see anything wrong in the lyrics other than a playful flirt between a man and a woman.
 
Oct 29, 2017
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All these posts but not one with the scene from Neptune's Daughter (a romantic comedy and musical) where it was first popularized.


EDIT:
Copy and paste from the Wiki entry for it.

During the 1940s, when Hollywood celebrities attended parties, they were expected to perform. In 1944, Frank Loesser wrote "Baby, It's Cold Outside" for his wife, Lynn Garland, and himself to sing at a housewarming party in New York City at the Navarro Hotel. They sang the song to indicate to guests that it was time to leave. Loesser often introduced himself as the "evil of two Loessers" because of the role he played in the song.[1]

Garland wrote that after the first performance, "We become instant parlor room stars. We got invited to all the best parties for years on the basis of 'Baby.' It was our ticket to caviar and truffles. Parties were built around our being the closing act." In 1948, after years of performing the song, Loesser sold it to MGM for the 1949 romantic comedy Neptune's Daughter. Garland was furious, and wrote, "I felt as betrayed as if I'd caught him in bed with another woman."[1]

In the film, "Baby, It's Cold Outside" was sung by Esther Williams and Ricardo Montalbán, then by Betty Garrett and Red Skelton, who reversed the roles. The song won the Academy Award.[2][3]
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,158
0
Canada
You realize that when you put the song in context, the woman in it really wants to stay but is actually struggling against that time's cultural and societal norms, as well as an overbearing and controlling family?
That's why in it, at the end, the duet combines and they both sing "It's cold outside", among other things.
Because "she wants it" is an adequate justification to ignore someone saying no, amirite?

Again, as I said earlier in the thread, the man in this song has (either unknowingly or willfully) put her in the impossible position of either persisting with blatantly saying no to a man's advances, which was unheard of in the 1940s, or risking being branded a slut and shunned for life by her family and peers, which is the least terrible thing that happened to women branded that way in the 1940s. And neither situation has a happy ending in the "historical context" people love to bang on about.
 
Oct 27, 2017
2,481
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Ontario
My perfect solution to this problem is to change the lyric from "baby, it's cold outside" to "there is a bear outside". That way he has a legitimate reason to want her to stay indoors. It literally solves everything.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,782
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Because "she wants it" is an adequate justification to ignore someone saying no, amirite?

Again, as I said earlier in the thread, the man in this song has (either unknowingly or willfully) put her in the impossible position of either persisting with blatantly saying no to a man's advances, which was unheard of in the 1940s, or risking being branded a slut and shunned for life by her family and peers, which is the least terrible thing that happened to women branded that way in the 1940s. And neither situation has a happy ending in the "historical context" people love to bang on about.
And again you are leaving the whole context off.
This was written by a couple (married) duet, obviously to be sung by engaged / dating people in the context of the 40s.
If anything, the song is actually progressive because it features a Woman going against the societal norm of the times, and although saying No to cover the appearances of what is expected of her by society and her family, she very much wants to stay and even uses the common (back then) excuse for "inappropriate" behavior that the drink must contain more alcohol than she thought. But-but date rape pill right? In a 1940's song to be played at parties by a married couple?
Sigh.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/12/19/baby-its-cold-outside-was-once-an-anthem-for-progressive-women-what-happened/

As feminist blog Persephone Magazine noted in 2010, the song’s historical context matters. At the time they were written, an unmarried woman staying the night at her beau’s was cause for scandal. It’s this fear we see reflected in the lyrics, more than any aversion on the part of the woman to staying the night.
She never expresses any personal distaste at the idea, rather pointing out that her “sister will be suspicious,” her “maiden aunt’s mind is vicious.” Really, then, we are hearing a battle between his entreaties and her reputation.
In this light, the song could be read as an advocacy for women’s sexual liberation rather than a tune about date rape.
 
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Oct 28, 2017
1,978
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Canada
This planet is getting to fucking stupid, it's a song from 1944 for gods sake.
I wouldn't inherently take this as an excuse . If the song said hey quit grabbing me. But c'mon doll don't be such a prude .... it would be offensive anyway
But if you read into the times and speech of the time it could be regarding the double standard of people talking about women. And what's in this drink is almost certainly not a date rape drug reference as they likely had no such drug but a way of saying the drink is strong or an excuse why I'm acting a certain way
 
Oct 25, 2017
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Elmore
It can be a rape-y sounding song in the average context and radio stations banning it for the sake of uncomfortable listeners leaving feedback seems like a fair business decision, arguments about original context and lamentations about current society aside.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,546
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Elmore
Can't we just make new and better christmas songs?

I'M only 31 and I'm already sick and tired of all these fucking songs (except All I want for Christmas, of course).
And ruin everything by not trying to recreate the childhood Christmas visions of baby boomers every year? We already let Mariah Carey slip through. Have you gone mad?
 
Oct 25, 2017
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It used to be funny when people took a premise of a benign and fairly innocent cartoon or song and turn it into something else.

It's like a Mad Magazine lampoon.

Now there are people out there who actually believe the willful misinterpretations as if they are discovering some sinister plot to warp the minds of society, when the willful misinterpretation was always a fabrication made up on a lark.

On another note, discovering Rudolph's first act is an allegory for racism and sexism in America now is not a revelatory observation. That was on the surface in the 1960s along with all the imitators who wrote along this same theme in children's cartoons and animation.
 
Oct 27, 2017
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I have mixed feelings about this song being removed from the radio ..

On the one hand I never much payed attention to the lyrics and having since read them, that line about the drink is all kinds of yikes...

On the other hand, this song is featured in my favorite Christmas movie, Elf, performed by Zooey Deschanel and Will Farrel, and I'd hate to see the movie need to be censored for TV.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,074
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It's not a ban. It's a conscious decision to not play the song. No one is disallowed to play it or hear it personally.
Radio stations deciding not to play songs for moral reasons is censorship. This is even more blatant when the radio station is owned by a sovereign nation.

The CBC, Rogers, and Bell banning a song is censorship. The BBC used to make or break artists. If you had objectionable material like references to illegal narcotics, your recording career was shot and your single would never hit the charts.

You have a misunderstanding of what radio censorship is and how the consolidation of radio stations in the 90s made censorship much easier.

In this particular circumstance, Baby It's Cold Outside is already established as a classic covered by many of the greatest Jazz singers of the 20th century and a song which has proven its merit to be on rotation. So, that's something we don't have to worry about. I believe you are objectively wrong in this circumstance though.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,916
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USA
Radio stations deciding not to play songs for moral reasons is censorship. This is even more blatant when the radio station is owned by a sovereign nation.

The CBC, Rogers, and Bell banning a song is censorship. The BBC used to make or break artists. If you had objectionable material like references to illegal narcotics, your recording career was shot and your single would never hit the charts.

You have a misunderstanding of what radio censorship is and how the consolidation of radio stations in the 90s made censorship much easier.

In this particular circumstance, Baby It's Cold Outside is already established as a classic covered by many of the greatest Jazz singers of the 20th century and a song which has proven its merit to be on rotation. So, that's something we don't have to worry about. I believe you are objectively wrong in this circumstance though.
Choosing to remove a song from a particular playlist is not censorship. They're exercising their free speech in taking a stance on the content in the song. They're not pretending like it doesn't exist or keeping anyone from actually hearing said song, or hiding it. They decided to keep it off of their own playlists for ethical reasons.

Nothing is stopping anybody from playing it in the comfort of their own home or from knowing the song or its history.. or from playing it out in public.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,158
0
Canada
And again you are leaving the whole context off.
This was written by a couple (married) duet, obviously to be sung by engaged / dating people in the context of the 40s.
If anything, the song is actually progressive because it features a Woman going against the societal norm of the times, and although saying No to cover the appearances of what is expected of her by society and her family, she very much wants to stay and even uses the common (back then) excuse for "inappropriate" behavior that the drink must contain more alcohol than she thought. But-but date rape pill right? In a 1940's song to be played at parties by a married couple?
Sigh.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/12/19/baby-its-cold-outside-was-once-an-anthem-for-progressive-women-what-happened/
I agree that the drink line is overblown. But the disregard for consent is still present and the fact that they ended up married is not worthy of creating an exemption. Again, it's the 1940s, unmarried women were considered a blight on society at worst and a cautionary tale at best.

The article you posted both downplays and re-enforces the importance of a woman's reputation at the same time; the article itself states its a fear for a reason, but then blows right past why it would be as though it didn't require consideration. The man doesn't consider the cost of what he's asking of her. Her reputation is all that would protect her from being "one of those girls" who "was asking for it". That these phrases in quotes are still used to justify assault in the 21st century should tell you the seriousness of the preservation of her reputation in the 1940s.

Also, let's not pretend that married women weren't asked to go along with the institutional sexism of the era. There's mountains of evidence to suggest that they were. In addition to that, the song was sold for use in a movie by Mr. Loesser without consulting his wife, as mentioned above, who was vocally upset with her husband's decision to essentially sell a song about their courtship without consulting her. So progressive.