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Gabby Douglas Slammed by Simone Biles for Victim-Blaming Comments Regarding Teammate Aly Raisman

Gabby Douglas, once again, accidentally finds herself in the middle of controversy. The Olympic gymnast was dragged on Twitter and even by teammate Simone Biles for victim blaming women who have been sexually assaulted, including fellow teammate Aly Raisman.

Aly Raisman bravely came forward to accuse former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar of sexual abuse during their treatment sessions. Over 100 women have already accused the doctor of abuse, who is now in jail facing 22 counts of first-degree criminal sexual assault.

Following a 60 Minutes interview detailing the abuse, Raisman faced some backlash for speaking out, with the haters using Raisman’s nude ESPN and Sports Illustrated swimsuit photoshoots to victim shame her. Raisman responded to the criticism explaining that the way a woman dresses is irrelevant to sexual assault/harassment. “STOP VICTIM SHAMING,” she wrote on Twitter.

Cue America’s darling (in 2012) and Raisman’s 2012 and 2016 Olympic teammate Gabby Douglas, with the victim shaming. In a now-deleted Tweet, Douglas responded to Raisman’s post stating women have the responsibility to “dress modestly and be classy.”

Oh, Gabby! That is the absolute worst statement to make, especially when sexual assault victims are banding together and finally finding the courage to speak out against their abusers.

The comment caused Douglas to be the No. 1 trending topic on Twitter. Fellow “Final Five” member Simone Biles quickly responded to Douglas’ tweet and expressed her shock and disappointment.

Douglas deleted her original tweet and apologized. She conceded that sexual assault is never OK or warranted and that she stands by her teammates. She even utilized the #MeToo hashtag, but it’s unclear if she, too, has had a similar experience.

This story honestly pains me to write, because: (1) Gabby Douglas and Simone Biles are the epitome of Black Girl Magic. (2) Victim sharing is always wrong. And (3) I am a true fan of artistic gymnastics (and not just during the Olympics).

Douglas is the first black woman to win the all-around Olympic gold medal and she passed the baton to Biles, who is now considered to be one of the greatest gymnasts in history. Unfortunately, the two have not been as close as we would all like.

Douglas notably faced heavy criticism during the 2016 Olympics for not placing her hand over heart during the national anthem as The Final Five won the gold team medal. During this controversy, it seemed her team did not rally around her.

She faced more criticism days later for not standing when Biles won the all-around gold medal, an event Douglas was unable to defend her title in due to a 2 per country/team rule, despite placing third in the world (behind Biles and Rasiman) during the qualification round in Rio.

Douglas has since separated herself from The Final Five team and has noticeably been absent from several major group appearances.

Gabby Douglas is my girl, but I also have to call it as I see it. And, unfortunately, she was terribly wrong in this situation. Hopefully, this sparks a conversation between her and Raisman (and maybe Biles) so that she better understands sexual assault and the problems of victim blaming.

Gabby Douglas Slammed by Simone Biles for Victim-Blaming Comments Regarding Teammate Aly Raisman is a post from: Gossip On This - Pop Culture, News, Videos & Humor

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6 Tricks to Help You Possibly Place Your New Album on a Billboard Chart

shutterstock_609484715.jpgImage via Shutterstock

Having your name appear on a Billboard chart is something that many artists aspire to, but despite efforts made by the media company to include new names and listings that only focus on those who haven’t yet broken into the mainstream, it remains incredibly difficult to make it to that point.

If becoming a Billboard-charting artist is something you aspire to (it’s not for everyone, and not everybody who makes music actually cares about that sort of thing), here are some tricks that might help you game the system a little bit... though let me make it clear that even if you follow my advice outlined below, you’re still going to need a lot of help and a lot of luck to make this work.

1. Offer lengthy presales

While they may currently be in fashion, surprise releases only usually work for the biggest names in the music industry, so unless you’re Beyoncé, don’t even try this route. It’s also worth mentioning that while many popular artists have started leaving only a few weeks (or even less time) between a new album's announcement until it's actually released, that’s probably not an advantageous idea for someone working their way up.

The longer fans have to order your new album, the better you’ll make out. If you only allow a few days of presales, people may forget, they might not get the message (no matter how much you share and reshare on social media), or they may decide to wait until the day it’s actually out... only to forget when the time arrives.

Remind people frequently, and in tactful ways, that your album is up for presale and that they should order it ASAP! You can offer something to those who do so, such as a track from the record before it’s out or possibly discounts on tickets or merch, but make sure you’re still making the money you need.

[Ask a Publicist: What Does an Album Campaign Timeline Look Like?]

2. Focus on reporting retailers

When it comes to making it onto a Billboard chart, it’s all about the numbers, and as trustworthy as you may be, the organization, which actually collects its data from Nielsen Music/Soundscan, won’t simply listen to what you tell them. All sales and streams are digitally collected and reported, so every sale and every play must be on a reporting platform or store, otherwise, it won’t count towards your first week total.

Everybody likes buying CDs when they’re at a show or from your website, and while that can be a nice way to earn a few extra bucks after performing, those aren't included when it comes to charting, so do everything you can to avoid situations where you’ll be moving units when they won’t count. Instead, point people to Amazon, iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music, or a local record store, preferably a chain, as the major ones are included when it comes to the Billboard charts.

3. Sell it at a discount (at first)

You may not want to hear this, but if you want to encourage as many people as possible to actually purchase your album in the first few days it’s available, which is still the best way to work your way up a Billboard chart, you’re going to need to offer it at a price that is attractive to them.

While the rules stipulate that a full-length must be sold for at least $3.99 in order to count towards the charts (so no, you can’t start giving it away for free or pull a Lady Gaga and let people buy it for a dollar), you can come close to that sum, which may assist those with limited resources in helping you out.

You don’t need to adhere to the $3.99 sum, but the higher you go, the more people will decide to hold off or stream the collection instead, which is still good, but not quite as impactful.

4. Ask fans to stream and buy it

Your most ardent supporters are sure to do whatever they can to see your name appear on one of those important rankings, and if you look to them to do something that won’t cost them any extra cash, they’ll probably be even more willing to sign up!

Ask your friends, family, and followers to stream your new album in addition to buying it. That way, you’ll move twice as many units, which will help you in the end.

5. Stream it non-stop

For those who really want to be helpful, tell them that they can stream your album several times in the first week, which will pad your total by quite a bit. Ask them to buy the record and then stream it anytime they want to listen to it, and if you’re comfortable doing so, suggest to them (perhaps just those you actually know or are close to, unless you have that sort of relationship with your fans) that they can keep it streaming on silent all night long or perhaps while they’re doing other things.

Those plays (to a certain extent — Nielsen does cap the total per person per week and too, too many plays might backfire and result in your album being removed or even you, yourself, getting banned) all count, and if you have several people doing so, all of a sudden one human can generate many units in a single frame.

6. Time the release right

One of the most egregious things I see up-and-coming artists doing that hurts their chances of reaching a chart is releasing their album on the wrong date! Let me make it very clear: the charting frame is from Friday at midnight EST until the end of the following Thursday. Any purchases or streams outside of that time frame will count towards a different week, and since you’re looking to accrue as much attention as possible in the first seven days, be smart about when you make the music available!

 

Next up: How Songs Make it Onto the Billboard Charts

 

Hugh McIntyre is a freelance pop music journalist in NYC by way of Boston. He has written for Billboard, The Hollywood Reporter, and MTV, as well as various magazines and blogs around the world. He is also the founder and editor-in-chief of the blog Pop! Bang! Boom! which is dedicated to the genre of pop in all of its glory.

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