Hi! I’m Dave from Boyinaband! Recently, I was looking around the Internet when I found a video telling me “You are not depressed!” “Stop it!” with an angry looking guy in the thumbnail who I recognised This is Prince Ea He’s a Youtuber and rapper who has more recently started making content which is motivating and inspiring according to himself You’ve probably seen some of the more successful stuff on Facebook His spoken word videos have gone freakin’ crazy viral Now at first glance, it looks like he’s spreading a good message but underneath the surface there are some really fundamental things he’s doing which struck me as seriously dodgy and watching the video behind the angry thumbnail pushed me over the edge so today I’m calling out Prince EA on several things I think he’s doing wrong First, that video okay so it´s obvious clickbait and that’s understandable we’ve all gotta do what we gotta do tocompetewithbuzzfeed youknowwhatI’msayin But the problem I have is within the content Did he just say that? I’m so mad I’m seriously going to go off on this guy in the comments How did he know? Okay I’m gonna have to stop you there No. Depression does not always go See it looks like you’re mixing up this wikipedia page with this one “depressed” can be a mood like sadness or frustration but “depressed” can also refer to major depressive pffffrickinghair major depressive disorder a mental disorder people are genetically predisposed to I’ll let this professor from Stanford University explain it It’s a biochemical disorder with a genetic component in early experience influences where somebody can’t appreciate sunsets and that’s what this disease is about Seriously well worth watching the full thing small Hagrid has some great insight so let’s see what else Prince has to say If you have to tell someone something is life changing then it probably isn’t that life changing Okay I get what you’re trying to say if you treat your emotions and thoughts as if you were a passive observer you’re more likely to be able to live with them this is at the core of a type of scientifically backed therapy which my therapist did called ACT I actually e-mailed one of the people who created the therapy Steven Hayes sent me a bunch of studies with evidence of it being effective but there are a lot of people who are stuck with brains that do not let their sadness go and this is why this part of his video is so problematic For those people who have the mental disorder it’s like saying to someone in the middle of a heart attack ‘You don’t have heart attacks you may be experiencing a heart attack but you do not have heart attacks heart attacks come… they go….’ And judging from the comments it’s not just me who felt strongly about this In fact one of his fans uploaded a response video which really explained this well First of all thank you for being an increadible force for change it’s fantastic but uhm dude if this is depression and you had been in my house yesterday I would have thrown the fucking thing at you it’s not a choice that people make it’s a shift in perception that’s caused by or has it’s basis in biochemistry What you’re saying now I think almost even errs on the side of being a little bit dangerous for folks
[hard to hear, someone please check] But I thought I’d give him the benefit of the doubt maybe he just messed up once with this topic until I found another video where he mentions the same concept with some more mistakes See this world we live in it creates depression For the mood: yes. For the mental illness: no. Sunsets This is where the damaging part comes in See everybody suffers from depression There’s always this little voice between the lines there of “Come on, pull yourself together” “we all deal with this sort of thing” This video is going to encourage that voice in depressed people which makes them feel inadequate everyone else has a come and go but not me That’s the kind of thing that could contribute to the statisticky reference at the start of this video Did you know that in ten years depression will be the leading cause of death Hang on, really? Even over heart disease or cancer? That seems really freaking high let me check your sources oh wait, there isn’t one wait is it here? no what about under here behind this? HERE? WHETHEHELLISIT? and this is the next problem The guy references studies all over the place I read a study yesterday Studies show the There was a study done a hospital study At a rate of 40 football fields every minute But I can’t find his sources any fricking where not in the description not on his Facebook posts not hidden in the background of his videos WAIT WHAT’S THAT oh it’s just bigfoot false alarm *AHAAAH* So I have no idea whether what he’s saying is just made up like in his video ‘Can We Auto-Correct Humanity?’ did you know the average person spends 4 years of his life looking down at his cellphone wow really? well i’d love to research this to contribute to the conversation but I can’t because you don’t CITE THE FRIKIN’ SOURCE And this made me wonder just how much scientific misinformation is this guy just casually throwing out there so I started to check Studies show the attention span of the average adult today is one second lower than that of a goldfish Now this struck me as absolute crap and it turns out that that’s because it’s absolute crap The closest I could find to a source that he might be referencing was a marketing brochure saying: The average time a user spends to digest information has decreased significantly over the past twelve years from 12 seconds in 2000 to 8 in 2012 less than the average attention span of a goldfish and after hours of searching I couldn’t find the actual study at all but even if we put aside for the moment the fact that he’s citing a study that doesn’t seem to exist it still means absolutely bugger-all because the study measured how long internet users spend on each page before moving on to the next one it might show that websites load faster now or that there’s more crap on the internet that we have to wade through before finding the good stuff But it does not show that people are incapable of paying attention to important messages which the next part of the video suggests so if you wanted a few people or aquatic animals that have yet to click off or close this video congratulations CONGRATULATIONS And not only did he mess up the part about human attention spans but the goldfish part is also wrong here are two studies proving they can remember things for months and if that’s not your thing even fricking mythbusters did an episode proving it wrong Thirty seconds I think is pretty good to make it through four holes it’s clear that they’ve learned and and it’s clear that they do, in fact, have a memory longer than three seconds MYTH BUSTED I just don’t know how many more layers of wrongness it’s possible to pile onto one sentence except maybe this one. Now that one was just a random fact trying to strengthen his point but some of the things he claims have worse consequences A line that made me fricking shake with frustration was: Videos are 6 seconds at high speed And you wonder why ADD is on the rise Okay so as you might say: Now here I know you didn’t do any research not just because you called it ADD when it’s been known in the psychological community as ADHD since 1987 but also ADHD is one of the most fricking genetic mental disorders I contacted one of the worlds leading ADHD experts Dr. Russell Barkley who told me that and then explained: 70 to 80% is the result of differences in genetics across the entire population it exceeds the genetic variation in any psychological trait if you have an identical twin with ADHD the risk to you is 75 to 90, 94 percent roughly So does watching short video cause ADHD? But we found no real evidence of purely social factors that can explain this disorder it really behaves very much like a biological trait ADHD is fricking horrible it’s essentially being trapped in your own brain unable to control yourself like normal people can this guy is spreading a lie that people could avoid it if they just stopped using their phones rather than the truth that it is one of the most treatable genetic disorders with medication and this from a guy who (according to himself) is “making smart cool” Imma make smart cool again That is definitely not smart and it is definitely not cool So why would he do this? Well if we take a look later in his video it brings me to the final issue with Prince EA Oh Princey! Princey wincey! (Hey! Hey! Hey!) Prince EA makes things seem a lot worse than they actually are so people get emotional enough to share it Mr Zuckerberg not to be rude but you should reclassify Facebook to what it is an anti social network yeah because some people are not using Facebook in a healthy way the entire site which has allowed billions of people to keep in touch across countries is anti-social he gives no sense of nuance to the argument and he often just totally lies technoloGY has made us more selfish and seperate than ever here are several sources which found charitable giving has been growing for decades but I’d love to see what you base your point on but ohwaityouDIDN’TCITETHE SOURCEAANY The news is 140 characters I could have sworn that technology let us freely share our footage and re- the news is 140 characters issues like police brutality which ne- THE NEWS IS 140 CHARACTERS twitter didn’t sto- THE NEWS IS 140 okay okay what else is wrong no longer do I wanna spoil a precious moment by recording it with a phone wanna spoil a precious moment precious moment by precious mo momnet by recording it with a phone I’m just gonna keep them I’ve noticed this is a surprisingly popular opinion but I just don’t get what’s wrong with it what if you wanna share it with someone who couldn’t be there or if you have a bad memory or if, heaven forbid, you enjoy looking at photo’s I don’t wanna take a picture of all my meals anymore I’m just gonna eat them I don’t see the appeal of taking pictures of food either but some people seem to enjoy it what’s wrong with that? just don’t follow them on Instagram I don’t want the new app the new software or the new update well in that case your cyber security is going to be severely comprimised and if I wanna post an old photo hang on you just said you don’t w- The news is a hundred and forty characters oh my mistake and it ends on this big point I imagine a world where we smile when we have low batteries cause that’ll mean we’ll be one bar closer to humanity the implication here is that technology prevents humanity how many films or songs have made you emotional? or how many online conversations made people happy your own videos judging from the response made people emotional which is very human and he went even further in another video entitled “Why I Think This World Should End” Technology has given us everything we could ever want And at the same time, stolen everything we really need really nee-need really nee-
NEED Frinkin’ everything around us is technology easily accessible food your frickin’ polo shirt What’s the cut-off point for you? 1846? Was the penny farthing a step too far? wat?! He continues to monger fear It’s easier to find a Big Mac than an apple. No it isn’t, there are more supermarkets than McDonald’s. Where are you looking for fruit? Also, you can get apples at McDonalds, just ask. When you find the apple, it’s been genetically processed and modified We’ve been genetically modifying things for centuries Bananas used to look like this Do you want that? Do you wanna eat that Prince Ea? There’s more violence on the screen than ever before And yet it is the least violent period in human history Today, we are probably living in the most peaceful time in our species existence Death rate goes down from 65,000 in the 1950s to less than 2,000 deaths in this decade There’s so much of this crap He makes it seem like the world is getting worse and worse when in a lot of ways we’re improving but that’s not a sharable poetry video is it? Now this point i have made me stop thinking this could be just unintentional and made me question if he respects his audience at all So on Facebook, different post types get different promotion by Facebook’s algorithm so Facebook can make the most money Things which keep people on the site for longer are promoted Like videos and posts and links which take people off the site don’t Which is why upload most of my videos to facebook directly rather than just linking to the youtube video and Prince EA does this himself by uploading video to facebook and youtube separately Now I noticed something weird on Prince E’s facebook Very often he linked to articles externally instead of making posts directly on facebook Now I wondered why he wouldn’t just post directly to facebook or stick to the motivational quote pictures which he slaps his name on to get a bit more exposure then I realized that most of the articles were from the same few websites most were plastered with ads and some were focused with selling something when you see what this clickbait crap is it gets worse I found this article written for Prince EA whatever that means on this site titled 6 signs you are in the presence of a deceased family member They get money by lying to desperate grieved people and spamming their pages with ads I might understand if this was a few articles which he had made a mistake about but this is systematic, it’s fricking daily! So I wondered hang on, is he getting paid for this? Isn’t he supposed to disclose when he’s getting paid to endorse something So I looked it up, In America, which is where he’s from The FTC regulates how legal this stuff is I found the FTC guidelines saying But maybe he actually is just sharing articles regularly which decreases his facebook ranking and potential audience growth Until I saw that some of them were written by him and the FTC guidelines also had a q&a section which had this part Either he’s writing a lot of unpaid clickbait articles or he’s making money by misleading his audience everyday and as he’s said repeatedly he’s really smart *rapping* imma make smart cool again or perhaps I missed something which is entirely possible but it seems seriously fishy to me One of the most frustrating things about all of this is that fundamentally I like that he’s trying to do good in he world he clearly makes a lot of people happy and inspires even if he does say so himself and has raised some great awareness with a few of his videos but these vague generalizations with no scientific backing just make it impossible to trust what he’s saying and what’s worse is there are plenty of other issues that he could address which are a lot less vague and still incredibly important since Prince EA has called out individuals in the past to give constructive criticism I thought this might be the most appropriate way to address him *music playing* *rapping* I read a study the other day It said be careful when you’re listening to prince EA Not gonna cite it in case you criticize it but let me try to summarize it anyway It said if some guy makes wild unsourced claims and never provide citations for what he states and tries to drum up fear over what’s not a big deal then be skeptical as hell of what he’s saying calling everyone’s depression the same are you insane? Guess not, or at least one psychiatrist would’ve explained it can’t always just be thought out, Jesus, it’s chemical imbalance please first do some research And saying ADD is caused by media consumption You kinda hard to trust with such incorrect pressumptions A mountain of evidence is that it is gentic And man, it’s AD /H/ D, don’t you listen to Kendrick? You won’t record precious moments on a phone? I suppose you hated the moment you posted this photo with Oprah you hippy hypocrite But a back-track lickety-split Deleted all of it quick We’re causing society’s downfall! Technology’s out to get us, Put down your phones, they’re devious Oh, and before you do, Follow me on social media. You hate media overstimulation, Wait, look… How many spam articles are you posting on Facebook? But I’ve got to give congratulations… For picking a videographer good enough to distract from the inaccurate crap you’re saying. Fear-mongering over the state of the world to seem clever When several of the things you said are better than ever We are way less selfish And we’re safer than historically And what made that possible? Oh yeah, technology. Human curiosity, man that is humanity What isn’t is spreading misinformation that’s damaging! Now I’m not perfect, I bet I have some citations missed. But I try to be consistent, and if it isn’t, then I’ll fix it. I like your aim to bring attention to important issues, And if you fixed things, you’d be great. Hell, that’s why I thought to diss you But if you won’t listen to me, Maybe you’ll listen to one of your fans who left this comment trying to help you understand saying “Even though I really like your thoughts and attitude, gonna unfollow ’cause of clickbait ads and lack of scientific proof.” Peace.