Adam Levine lashes out at the VMAs on Twitter

Adam-Levine

Image Credit: John Shearer/WireImage.com

Maroon 5 frontman and The Voice judge Adam Levine will not be tuning in to the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards this Sunday night. He laid out his distaste for the show earlier today on Twitter.

“The VMA’s. One day a year when MTV pretends to still care about music,” he wrote. “I’m drawing a line in the sand. F— you VMA’s.”

An hour later, Levine wrote, “Still waiting to have my ‘Jerry Macguire mission statement moment of deep regret…’ Not happening. Phew!” Clearly, he’s sticking by his opinion (and perhaps wanting somebody to show him the money).

But Levine brings up a reasonable point that comes up around this time every year. Should MTV even bother doing this annual award show? On the one hand, it’s typically an extremely high-rated event, and it has become one of the few pieces of television that links the network of today with its roots.

However, the distance between what MTV was and what MTV has become is driven home powerfully every time the VMAs come around.

The network made a big deal out of extracting the word “music” from its logo last year, and it seemed like it was an even longer time coming. Ever since the fall of TRL a few years back, there hasn’t been a video-based show the network has deeply committed to (there was the aborted FNMTV experiment, though that was an idea that showed up a few years too early and was abandoned just as it was finding a voice). The music that shows up on the network shows up in the middle of Jersey Shore and Teen Mom, and while those types of appearances may actually give artists more exposure than a video spin would, the problem of videos being crowded out still exists.

There are still elements of MTV committed to music: MTV Hive is starting to find its sea legs, Palladia is a great conduit for live performances, and the return of 120 Minutes is a welcome if slightly uninspired attempt to resurrect a beloved video-based franchise. But the main network remains mostly music free (and please don’t bring up AMTV). The network even sometimes seem embarrassed by their own pedigree: When they were celebrating their 30th birthday earlier this summer, they came up with the great idea of airing the network’s first broadcast hour (commercials included). But you couldn’t find it on MTV — you had to tune in to VH1 Classic. And they still do long-form sit-downs and news specials about top artists, though you have to watch most of them on the Internet.

So Levine is both right and wrong. MTV as a network certainly doesn’t care very much about music, though MTV as a brand still has commitments to what the “M” used to stand for. He’ll be skipping the show, but he can always read about it on this website.

Read more:
EW predicts what’s coming at the VMAs
Here kitty, kitty: Watch a cat recreate Madonna’s infamous 1984 MTV VMAs performance of “Like a Virgin”
VMAs tribute to Amy Winehouse to feature Tony Bennett
Complete VMA coverage at EW.com


Comments (200 total) Add your comment
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  • Keith

    I sort of agree with him, but honestly, it’s not MTV’s fault for wanting to turn a profit. Their corporate bosses want to make money as well as all their employees and quite simply, the American public has shown quite a taste for the crap MTV the network airs. If music videos drew in great ratings, believe me, MTV would show more videos. But people want to watch crap like Jersey Shore, so that is what MTV airs. The video as a form of music entertainment just isn’t what it used to be. I miss the days, too, when videos were truly events. But what can you do? People like to watch stupid tv. It keeps the cash rolling in.

    • DRG

      Then they should just be honest about it and change the name of the station. What does the M stand for anyway?

      • Keith

        That doesn’t make any sense. I bet you many kids who watch it know don’t even know (or care) what the M stands for. MTV is the brand name. Even when tastes change, and they surely have, you don’t change the name of the brand. You change what you sell to the new generation. The bottom line is the bottom line. I’m not happy about that, but if I ever want to know why ANYTHING is happening, I always remind myself the answer to almost any why is who is making the money. If the public wanted to watch chickens being plucked, then MTV would show it. As would many other networks. “MTV” is the brand. And to a whole new generation, “MTV” stands for Jersey Shore and The Hills and similar dreck.

      • In their defense..

        I disagree completely. Any young people watching MTV today are smarter than you give them credit for. We’re all aware MTV is/was a music channel that now specialize in mostly reality television. What I have a hard time understanding is this arguement that MTV sucks fhey’re not playing music videos why bother concept but fail to realize that MTV has maybe 2 or 3 other channels where you can watch a freakin music video. And even that wouldn’t matter because YouTube is the new place to watch music videos anyway. MTV has been trending in this direction for at least almost 20 years since the real world began. So their first 10 years is now HISTORY. It’s the past so move on!

      • Keith

        If you are defending MTV for airing trash and the public for eating and swallowing trash, more power to you. I was not defending the ideals of the process, only the logic. MTV has been trending in this direction because the America public has been trending in the direction of a bunch of ill educated knuckleheads who know how to operate a 4G phone but wouldn’t know a good tune or a artistic moment if it bit them on them left teet.

      • Harry

        “If it bit them on them left teet” LOL. I’m sensing sarcasm, maybe? Oh wait, no. I’m a stupid American. What is sarcasm, again?

      • JPX

        What about “The Learning Channel”? When was the last time TLC provided any actual ‘learning’? IT became the home of Kate Plus 8, which is as far away from learning as you can get. I miss the old MTV. As a kid I watched it religiously but I haven’t watched it in years thanks to all the reality crap.

      • A

        The M stands for moronic.

      • Manny

        So, if BET started veering toward different types of programming (to make more money, of course) and in a few years there was nothing representative of African-American culture, should they continue to use the “B” just because it is their brand? Sounds as ridiculous as “M”TV.

      • janneeeyy

        I just païd $21.87 for an ïPad 2 – 64 G.B and my boyfrîend loves his Pänasonic Lumíx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by U P S.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch L.E.D T.V to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy. Here is the we bsite we use to get it all from, Co ol C ent . c o m

      • Suzi

        Since MTV airs garbage like Jersey Shore and Teen Mom, the “M” has got to stand for “Moronic!”

      • kal

        i miss the music videos honestly, wish they still played them, I agree with Adam, they want the popularity of a music award show, but they dont play any?BTW,I wanna share a good news to you.My best friend ,she just has announced her wedding with a millionaire man who is a celebrity !they met via
        Celebmingle.C óM ..it is the largest and best club for celebrity and their admirers to chat online. …You do not have to be rich or famous. ,but you can meet one , It’s worthy a try,Maybe you wanna check it out or tell your friends!

        -

      • Rob

        Everyone watches their music video on youtube now. MTV is obsolete. I’m not going to sit around all day waiting them to hopefully play a video I want to see. MTV will be infomericial city eventually.

      • Dani

        I agree that MTV should stick by it’s name, but thing is, Music Videos today are so worthless, that it isn’t worth putting them on television. Besides, MTV has MTV Jams, which is a station that shows nothing but music videos.

      • Kasey

        The M now stands for moronic

      • Rob

        MTV is for people who don’t know how to use the Internet.

      • alilim

        For seeking Interr-acial Love , i think i have the best choice
        –HoTβlαckwhitе. СòM –it’s where to- me-et bla-ck, whit-e, gorgeous, bea-utiful for rom-ance and- enduring relation-ship-s ! – it’s the best place for s”eeking int’erracial lo-ve.which gives you a chance to make your life better and open opportunities for you to me-et the at’tractive s’ingles and treat you like a king or Queen. Maybe you wanna check it out or tell your frie-nds.

    • Caz

      What’s an “annal awards show’?

      • bootsycolumbia

        I was wondering the same thing myself.

      • Rawr

        Sounds like something they’d play on MTV…

      • lily

        He might have a point but I am getting kind of sick of Adam going on rants about everything. The guy is on overexposure overload. I am a 28 years old doctor, mature and beautiful.and now I am seeking a good man who can give me real love , so i got a username Lindasunny2002 on–a’ge’l’es’s’da’te.c óm–.it is the first and best club for y’ounger women and old’er men, or older women and y’ounger men,to int’eract with each other. Maybe you wanna ch’eck ‘it out or tell your friends!

      • Manny

        Snooki should be the host of the Annal Awards.

    • Fender

      “The crap that MTV airs”.

      That sums it up pretty well.

    • Captain

      Completely agree. It’s not MTV’s fault that people don’t watch music videos on TV anymore. You Tube kind of killed that, why would anyone sit infront of the TV hoping that they’ll show Eminem’s new video when they can just type it up on a website and watch it in seconds? It’s the nature of television, networks play what people watch. Yes, MTV has chosen to reformat their network as trash TV but atleast they’re branching out with scripted programming, even if they’ve only found one show so far that really works.

    • LOL

      America loves crap. I hope Fast Five wins a well deserved award. It was the best movie of the year.

      • DC

        You can spike your hair and get all of the bad tattoos you want, but you still are a nerd.

    • Fed Up With Mess

      Agree with Mr Levine..MTV has been a platform for advertising and rating..Nothing to do with music and art.

      Gaga will be opening the show; enough reasons to visit my parents or spend time outside camping.

    • tnsmoke

      There used to be 2 county music video channels: CMT and TNN (The Nashville Network). At least TNN changed it’s name to SPIKE to match it’s programming, and became very successful. Now there is GAC, along with CMT but they, like MTV/VH1 run reality shows and old movies. Not everyone’s cable service offers the vaious genere VH1’s all video channels, unless you get the expensive digital packages. The music video format is alive but you need to find the video of your choice now on You Tube or artist’s Facebook pages. Adam Levine is right but his head seems to have swollen quite a bit since The Voice…methinks.

    • wakeforce

      Since when does the Learning Channel have to do with learning? When does A& E stand for arts & entertainment? MTV isn’t the only channel that has forgotten what it stands for. Reality tv is cheap to produce and is extremely popular, which is why TV is dominated by it. Don’t blame it all on Jersey Shore.

      • Caroline

        Your right – I blame the person who started the whole reality show “craze” and sucked the creative soul put of the entertainment industry. Now anyone with a camera can be a star.

      • XplodingLobster

        Right? CMT airs Titanic, SyFy runs Ghost Hunters, even Cartoon Network has live action ‘reality game shows’. Comedy Central is the only channel on TV still airing what they name themselves for (of course your idea of comedy may be different).

    • Lady GooPoo

      haha. he is just mad that no one likes their crap music or band anymore. he can’t even get a nominated anymore. LOL. what a loser he is when mtv won’t even recognize his bands music. cry adam, cry your little salty tears out. ra ra oh la la fa fa gag u la.

  • Jen

    I agree with him. Why have a show devoted to the best videos when they don’t even air the videos?

    • ChaCha

      Ditto

      • JB

        I wish more artists would follow suit and boycott MTV shows and the network until they get some of the crap off the channel and start showing videos, even if it’s one hour in primetime each day.
        Jersey Shore, Teen Mom, fine, those are hits — what about those stupid dating shows they show all day? Awkward, all those other teenage drama shows that go nowhere?

      • Kat

        Ditto x 3

      • alpha

        Most of them arent artists. They are just lip syncers whith personal songwriters.

    • Tess

      Worse yet – it’s not even about the “best” videos winning or even being nominated so much as it is just getting the biggest music stars to show up and hope for a “big moment” in the show that will get people to talk about it the next day. It’s been a long time since they even cared about awarding quality videos (or quality music for that matter). One of the bigges jokes about their network that they still do the VMA’s. But then again, they’ve never had anything to do with movies and it never stopped them from doing a movie award show either.

      • Keith

        MTV is about making money off the teen/young adult demo. It’s always been about that, even when videos were all it showed. That demo doesn’t care about videos now in the era of itunes and downloads and youtube. So MTV had to adapt. Granted, they certainly pushed the change when they realized it won ratings. But MTV serves up what sells. Blame the buyer.

      • Juniper Stevens

        @Tess Your comment is partially inaccurate regarding MTV not having anything to do with movies yet airing the Movies awards every year. They have a production company called MTV Films that has made some notable and highly successful films since ’96. Some of them are Varsity Blues, Election, Save The Last Dance, Blades of Glory, The jackass films ect ect.

      • Anna

        MTV Canada doesn’t even have the rights to the VMAs, which is very sad. I have never seen a music video on that channel. Our music station (which actually plays music videos sometimes) MuchMusic airs the VMAs

      • Captain

        @Anna
        MuchMusic and MTV Canada are owned by the same company so technically, they do have the rights to show the VMAs, they just don’t because Much Music has been showing the VMAs for years. I believe MTV Canada does show the Movie Awards.

    • Shellibelli

      i miss the music videos honestly, wish they still played them, I agree with Adam, they want the popularity of a music award show, but they dont play any?

    • Fender

      It gives everyone a chance to dress up, act foolish and be on camera. Which is pretty much what MTV is about these days, minus the dressing up part.

    • sly

      agree! good for you Adam Levine for pointing out what a lot of us were already thinking!

  • Bull

    MTV is still capable of airing Videos but they need to start soon by having a MTV-V where its just 24-7 Videos.
    HAHAHAHAH never going to happen since they are run by people who can’t see the end game.

    • Juniper Stevens

      i think some ppl are jus so quick to hate MTV they make the most inaccurate statements. MTV Hits is a music video channel SOLELY dedicated to airing music videos 24/7. Their is MTV Jams as well which is the urban/hip-hop 24/7 station. And then their is Fuse which I believe is somehow associated with them too. And finally if you love music videos so much I suggest You tube. They have mostly all of em and instead of MTV deciding. YOU can! What a wonderful new world we live in. ;)

      • Cris

        I won’t go into your atrocious grammar (OK, I will .. it’s THERE, moron), but I will say that I get three MTV stations, and none of them are MTV Hits. So many of us really DON’T have the choice to watch that if we want to watch music videos.

      • Juniper’s Revenge

        i spelled there as their jus to piss u off. so their? are we happy now?

      • Acaseofgeo

        I see your point Juniper, but what is the EXPOSURE of those tiny channels? A few thousand? Versus MTV’s MAIN channel which reaches up to 10 MILLION viewers. I have over 70 channels on my TV package and only ONE of the MTV brands, so I don’t get to see ANY videos. And yes, it IS (?) a wonderful world where YouTube offers whatever you choose, but again, the question is EXPOSURE. If you haven’t heard about it or have been exposed to it then you’re not going to see it. Its just like education, “We don’t know WHAT we don’t know” and therefore cirriculums exist. MTV SHOULD perform as a “cirriculum” that exposes at least SOME video.

    • L

      I don’t think Fuse is associated with MTV. Fuse is associated with the Canada based Much Music I’m pretty sure. I’d pick Fuse over MTV any day.

  • Jake Jabbs

    MTV is just serving up what trash like to watch. By their heroes you shall know them.

    • Keith

      Exactly.

      • innerjuju

        I am sick of poor quality “reality television”. ‘The Real Housewives’, ‘Jersey Shore’, ‘The Kardashians’ all are trash, have made celebrities of non-entities and cash franchises for E!, MTV and Bravo. However, people must be watching them or the networks wouldn’t keep producing them.

  • Gloria

    I guess ol’ Adam has to get publicity where ever he can find it.

    • ChaCha

      Whether or not you like or even watch the show, “ol’ Adam” is doing just fine with The Voice. At least that show IS about music.

      • Eva

        I agree, I really liked Adam and respected him more after watching him on the Voice, and I agree with him about the VMAs.

      • L

        Not to mention Maroon 5’s “Moves Like Jagger” is the number 1 song on Itunes right now.

    • Jeannie

      Um … to be clear, Adam wasn’t looking for publicity. The story pulls from his twitter message … and he has a makes a very good point.

      • tnsmoke

        And how do you think the media gets some stories now? They just monitor celeb’s Twitter posts.

    • Rasmy

      that’s the main issue, and not many people have seen as an issue: the media psenerts to us godless idols – people that display a perfect show of real imperfection, filled with emptiness. And that catches the youths more than we know, and parents and youths workers seem to be doing nothing about. If we begin to teach our young ones to begin to think outside our sensual culture and inside the sensible biblical culture, we can save some.

  • erin

    Duh. The biggest problem with MTV being crap and having nothing to do with music now is that nothing has replaced it. There is no music programming on TV anymore. If you hear anything about artists in the general media, it’s about who’s having a baby or who’s got beef with who – nothing that’s actually about MUSIC. Sad.

    • Rob

      It’s called the Internet. MTV is for people that are afraid of computers. That is all.

  • Orionsaint

    He has a point though. MTV shows reality shows all year. Then they pretend to care about music for one night out of the year. It should be the RSA Reality Show Awards.

  • Orionsaint

    On the other hand there’s the channel MTV Hits. Which only plays videos. I have it on my cable lineup.

  • Patrick

    I disagree with Adam here. This is like saying CBS shouldn’t be airing the grammys because they don’t have one show that is music related. So what?

    • Andrew

      The difference is that CBS simply airs an award show (like the Grammys) it does not produce it (The grammy academy hires the producers and selects the winners.) MTV is the award show; it doesn’t just air the ceremony.

    • @Patrick

      Good point Andrew. It would be different if it CBS had an award show called “The CBS Video Music Awards” but they don’t. MTV (Music Television) VMAs (Video Music Awards). It’s ironic how that network no longer has music nor videos.

  • DRG

    MTV giving awards for music videos would be like the Food Network giving awards for rugby players.

  • Penis Mcbriddle

    For people who blame the “corporations” etc.

    You forget who guides the invisible hand of the free market; the consumer guides it. In essence, through greed and gluttony we killed it. We used the interwebz for piracy, and streaming. Who needs to go out and buy a newly released albums when you can have them for free via torrent, or stream via pandora or youtube.

    You can’t blame people for not wanting to invest in a dead industry. That would be like Apple or Microsoft investing in typewriter technology. People that invested in MTV had to try and salvage what they could so they tried reality tv and it worked.

    So please stop acting like you, your family, and your friends had nothing to do with it. Like it was all some big corporate string pulling that destroyed it.

    Although I blame the consumer for what happened to music, humanity’s acceptance of reality tv is a completely different issue. For anyone interested, I suggest you read Propaganda by Edward Bernays

    • Sherry

      I think it’s a mix of both. Consumers are now finally saying, “Hey, I’m sick of this” but it’s come late. Now the market is oversaturated with reality tv and autotuned pop stars that are pimped on Twitter, celeb blogs. Corporations such as MTV are also at fault because they do get consumed by greed, which also destroys the aesthetic of entertainment as a whole. I do see a change in the wings. Things change, demographics change, tastes change. Many of these reality shows have jumped the shark, people are wising up (albeit slowly) to tactics by companies to promote crap and most viable of all the next gen of MTV viewers are going to want to watch different programming than Jersey Shore. It comes in cycles, good and bad.

  • adeleluva34

    MTV hasn’t shown videos in a long time. Did Adam Levine care about MTV not playing videos in 2004 when Levine and Maroon 5 won VMA awards, how about when Levine and Maroon 5 performed on the VMA in the past?

    • Carrie

      Exactly. Since he claims to be drawing a line in the sand, does that mean he’s going to give all his awards back? Will he no longer let them play his videos, use his band’s music in any way or get the publicity from performing on one of their awards shows? MTV schedules programming that people actually watch, like every other network. If it was profitable for them to play music videos 24/7, I’m sure they’d do that. Obviously, it isn’t.

    • Sherry

      In his and other musicians defense, 2004 was the last leg year of videos being somewhat played on MTV. TRL was still on, the only reality shows were The Hills and Laguna Beach. But, there were still videos. Adam’s not the only artist upset with MTV and he’s a part of a huge demographic of people feeling ignored by the channel. I think what’s happening is a mixed bag. Not only artists are getting frustrated but many people are becoming vocal over the dislike of lack of music. Whether it is reality tv overexposure or longtime fans turned off, there is more negative backlash than I have seen. The mistake MTV is making is depending too much on reality programming. Sure it generates money, but the demographic that watches it will either get older and move on or the next gen of watchers will want to do something different. MTV has always been guilty of this. They jumped on hair metal, alternative, hip hop, boy band trends and every show would be about those genres. The difference is there was a respect where they still evened out programming to have something for everyone. Now, they only pander to certain artists, record companies and demographics allowing others to be ignored. The only way it will end is when people stop watching the crap on there, more artists and viewers speak up and MTV to get a clue that it’s time to change.

      • kh1983

        Actually, “The Hills” didn’t start on MTV until 2006. So in 04 it was just that Laguna tripe on there… and videos.

        And I agree with everything you said… just a minor technical correction!

  • james

    MTV has alternative channels where they DO air videos all the time. The problems with music video is that there is no demand for them. In the 90s and early 2000 when most people still had dial-up, they can watch them on MTV. When was the last time you guys turn in to one of MTV’s other channel for the videos (most of you probably didn’t even know they existed.) ?

    • Sherry

      The problem is MTV is now oversaturating their alternative stations with Jersey Shore reruns. I was going through my cable guide and actually saw Jersey Shore marathons on MTV Jams, MTV Tres. That’s both disturbing and ridiculous.

    • Tony

      Ah, but isn’t that MTV’s fault, too? There’s obviously a demand for the kind of programming MTV used to provide before “reality” set in, and you can point to Palladia and VH1 Classic and say “See? They have music, your fault for not watching”, but really, where’s the availability on the cable systems? Most cable systems will provide MTV and VH1 and that’s all. Otherwise it’s “Get a dish” or “Call your cable provider and ask” (and please tell me when something like THAT has EVER worked with YOUR cable company). If MTV wants to get rid of the reality-induced perception that they have nothing to do with music anymore, why aren’t they trying to get their products on more cable systems? We can’t watch what we can’t find, after all. If it’s good enough for ESPN to insist to cable companies that they carry ESPNThis and ESPNThat, ESPN217, why isn’t it good enough for a network appealing to the lowest form of entertainment these days to try and justify their own existence?

    • Michael

      This argument falls short. Most cable/satellite providers only carry the extra channels on their very top package tiers, so you have to have a cable/satellite bill that’s over $200.00 a month in many cases if you want these channels. Oh and just so you know, MTV2 does not play mostly videos, it’s also reality crap.

  • whatevs

    Annal award show? I don’t think many people would tune in for that, or at least I would hope not.

  • Sean

    He might have a point but I am getting kind of sick of Adam going on rants about everything. The guy is on overexposure overload. Too many singles out, too many controversial statements being made and his whole act is just kind of getting old… I think he is becoming a little too high on himself.

    • LMFAO

      eMpTyV is a waste.

    • Anonymous

      I completely disagree. Where are all these “controversial” statements? He criticized Idol because it sucks and her criticized the VMA’s because they suck. Neither of which were done for his glorification. His song is and has been number one on Itunes and The Voice is a hit. He doesn’t need to call attention to himself.

    • Little comment

      And for one song from a new album released every 3 years, we give a damn about Maroon5.

      • Jamilson

        08.24.11 at 8:11 pmPorQ_201Good song, good video. Give credits were it’s due, stop htanig for once damn.Haven’t seen a video that actually mad sense in a while. All about money cash hoes now..

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