Primary Day in NH – Moar Poetry In the Press Edition


Photo credit Andrea Dahlberg (via Facebook, Slam Free or Die page)

MTV News Inspires Poetry
Posted on January 9, 2012 by Adam Coughlin on 2012 NH Primary Notebook

News outlets have often been criticized for having an agenda, but MTV may have taken things to new levels, according to one local man.

Mark Palos grew up watching MTV back when the channel showed music videos. But Palos is furious with a recent article posted on its website. In the article, Palos feels MTV makes a recent slam poetry night held at Milly’s Tavern seem like a Ron Paul event. But in reality that couldn’t be further from the truth, according to Palos.

Palos of Slam Free or Die routinely organizes a Thursday night open mike at Milly’s. On Thursday, Milly’s manager Rob Weintraub got a call from MTV asking if Milly’s would host a slam poetry night on Sunday, Jan. 8, with poems that were written in response to Saturday’s debate. Weintraub reached out to Palos and Sam Teitel of Slam Free or Die who interested, according to Palos. He said MTV was going to film the show and put it on an episode of MTV Docs, a documentary show.

Palos said he went into overdrive organizing the event and a bunch of poets gathered at Milly’s on Saturday night to watch the debate and take notes, which is something they normally wouldn’t do.

Read the rest of the article here.

Other relevant links:

Sam Teitel’s (unofficial) note on the situation, the morning after the event
Slam Free of Die Sets the Record Straight About MTV
MTV Grossly Misrepresents Slam Free or Die
Manchester Poets Don’t Want Their MTV –  Worcester T&G’s Pop Culture Notebook
MTV Pretends Poetry Night Was Ron Paul Event – Newser


Looks like MTV News owned up – attached to the very end of the now (slightly) edited article that started this whole mess is this little nugget of goodness:

Editor’s Note: Previous reportage mischaracterized the event as being “held in honor of Ron Paul.” MTV News has corrected the error.

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE: From the Slam Free or Die Facebook

by SlamFree OrDie on Tuesday, January 10, 2012 at 4:55pm

Dear Slam Free or Die Community and Slam Family,

Mtv has added an “Editor’s Note” to the end of the original article, found here:

They have not corrected the content of the article or its title, and they have apologized to NO ONE! They removed a FRAGMENT of a sentence and posted a tiny little editor’s note at the bottom of the article.  They left in the entire paragraph with all the miscontextualized quotes from some of the poets who read. They think that now we will just sit down and shut up now… WRONG!!

 Slam Free or Die wants the following things from Mtv news before this is over (and anything less is unacceptable):

1) an apology to the following parties: the poets who read at Vote Free or Die (especially the ones that had their poetry cannibalized for the article), the Slam Free or Die community, Milly’s Tavern and the readers of Mtv News who were told this article was news instead of fiction

2) a complete retraction or factually accurate re-write of the article

Until these things happen, Slam Free or Die respectfully requests that anyone who has been posting, reposting, blogging, etc any news about this situation continue to do so.  We need to show them there are consequences for their actions.  That we are not a community they can slap in the face and then turn their back on.  And most of all, that WE WILL NOT TAKE THIS LYING DOWN!

We would also like to take the time to thank anyone who has made any effort to get this story into the media, especially (but not only): Michelle Campbell Barry, Victor Infante, Kevin Spak, Mellisa Newman-Evans, Adam Caughlin, Sou MacMillan, Bill MacMillan, and ayone else who has posted or reposted news and commentary on this debacle.

love and rockets,
The Colonel


Slam Free or Die, the New Hampshire Poetry Slam, meets weekly on Thursday nights at Milly’s Tavern (500 North Commercial Street, Manchester, NH). This week the feature is Bill MacMillan – who will also be presenting a prize to the poet with the best anti-MTV poem that night. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. The open mic starts at 8:00 p.m. and the cover is $3. More info is available at the SFOD Facebook page.


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