Saturday, June 18, 2016

Last Month's Poll Results & Our Newest Poll!!

It's now time to shut down last month's poll and launch our newest poll on the SMS, so let's start by recalling last month's topic! In our latest poll, we posed this question to you guys: What is your opinion on local concerts & albums that are offered on "pay what you can/want" models? Sadly, we only got 6 votes, but there is an interesting final tally, and here it is!

Indifferent/no opinion (3 votes, 50%)
They should only be for special occasions or deals (2 votes, 33%)
They're a great option that's accessible to everyone! (1 vote, 17%)
It depends on the album or show (0 votes)
I don't like them, they should have a flat fee (0 votes)

What do you guys think? While there is a small sample size once again, it is clear from the votes that we did get that there's not a sizable opposition to the idea of "pay what you can" albums and shows, so most readers either like the idea in at least occasional usage, or don't oppose it! That said, of the six received votes, half were for "Indifferent/no opinion", which could be a sign that fans don't really concern themselves with admission fees and album costs, or that "pay what you want" models aren't really widespread right now (the idea mostly pops up locally via The Gore Street Cafe and Bandcamp.) It's possible that support behind "pay what you want" models would increase and become more widespread if it becomes more commonplace with more bands and venues, but I'd say that it's a nice option where offered, and while it shouldn't necessarily be the only payment method, it has it's place! Thanks to everyone for voting!

As for this month's poll, I wanted to tackle some recent events in the Soo that, while not directly tied with local music, could easily be intertwined if the movement grows. As you may know, the Bored Youth Sault movement has caught fire in recent weeks following the numerous "Bored" graffiti tags in the Soo by Kurtis Stone, who currently faces mischief charges for it, but has attracted a lot of support from locals who agree with the message and the lack of youth engagement & opportunity in the city. Hundreds of people like the movement's Facebook page already, and the movement has attracted a number of recent news articles and discussion that you can find via SooToday and The Sault Star. Aside from Lion Ride/Detroit alum Brenton Ellis' involvement in Monday's Bored support gathering downtown (he's quoted in this article), the Bored movement doesn't blend with The Sault Metal Scene's typical coverage, but the seeds are there, as local concerts and original bands are heavily driven on youth involvement as performers and attendees.

Some local music fans may find that an increase in concerts and band involvement would at least help in the issue of youth boredom & engagement, but should Kurtis' graffiti and the movement that arose from it be a  catalyst for change in local concerts? I'm posing this question to you guys for this month: Should local bands and musicians take part in the Bored Youth Sault movement? I've chosen 5 responses to pick from in the poll, so here's what you should know on each!

Yes, they can add a lot to the city's youth culture: One frequently cited partial remedy to the Bored movement is to get a new youth center in Sault Ste. Marie, but there's no one clear answer, and it's entirely possible that local musicians could do something to engage the youth, perhaps with an awareness concert, well-placed benefit show, or just booking more youth-geared concerts in general. If you think local musicians should absolutely help in the Bored movement, vote here!

Only if it can actually make a difference: For all of the support and attention that the Bored movement has been getting lately, there are skeptics who like the idea, but don't think it will actually create change. Case in point: Monday morning's gathering outside of the courthouse didn't even have 10 attendees when The Sault Star came for their report. Are you only in favour of an increased local music presence in the Bored movement if actual change is a guaranteed result?

No, musicians should stay out of it: Though the potential exists for local musicians to become involved in the Bored movement, it isn't directly tied to local music (as best as I can tell, Kurtis isn't a musician), and it's by and large about youth engagement and boredom in multiple facets. Maybe you find that musicians should not get involved in the Bored movement and let it remain at it's current wider appeal, or just want your music free of social causes? Vote here if you agree!

I'm not Bored, and like the Soo as it is: Of course, there are people who have no qualms with Sault Ste. Marie, find that it's as lively as you make it, and don't agree with the Bored movement for one reason or another. Perhaps you're just in a different stage in life, enjoy the Soo for what it is, and don't want to get involved with any upheavals of what's comfortable. Others may find that this is the wrong way to go about creating change, but if you're not Bored, this is the option for you!

Indifferent/no opinion: Are you oblivious to the Bored movement, not impacted by it at all in your life, or don't live in the Soo at present? If, for any reason, this doesn't affect you or your perceptions of the city (good or bad) in any way, this is your choice!

VOTE TODAY!! You have until July 18th to cast your votes, so hopefully we get a good turnout for this very topical poll, so vote A.S.A.P. on the page's right, and stay tuned for some special early-week concert previews and more tomorrow! Thanks everyone!

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