An online movement formed on behalf of superstar Janet Jackson is taking on the media to remind them why
“Janet’s Legacy Matters.”
Following what was speculated to be a purposeful omission of the Unbreakable singer from a recent “100 Greatest Award Show Performances of All Time” article by Billboard Magazine, a collective of the performer’s fans — often referred to as the #JanFam on social media — have come together to begin promoting the hashtag “#JanetsLegacyMatters” as a way to right what they feel is an ongoing wrong that the music star has endured for more than a decade.
“For over 40 years, Janet Jackson has been in the [entertainment] business,” writer CiCi Smith of celebrity news blog The C-Spot explains.
“But contrary to all of the success she’s had, the deliberate intentional blacklisting of her music and trying to erase her illustrious career has become a huge problem.”
As previously noted on the Inquisitr, a rarely-publicized media blackout of the 50-year’old’s Jackson’s music, videos and other related imagery began to take place back in February 2004, after her Super Bowl Halftime Show with Justin Timberlake.
Toward the end of their collaborative effort of the former *NSYNC frontman’s solo hit, “Rock Your Body,” Timberlake grabbed for a piece of fabric on Janet’s costume and tore it off, accidentally revealing the singer’s breast for 9/16 of a second as opposed to a slightly-risque section of Jackson’s lingerie.
Immediately after the gaff, which was nicknamed “Nipplegate,” both Jackson and Timberlake were asked by the FCC and officials of CBS, the network that aired the game, to apologize publicly at the 46th Annual Grammy Awards, which were set to air exactly one week after the Super Bowl on February 8, 2004. Janet declined to do so, but Timberlake relented and in turn, walked away from the matter mostly unscathed.
Janet, on the other hand; a worldwide icon with five No. 1 Billboard albums by that time — she’s had two more since then, including Unbreakable in 2015 — was demoted from media darling to social pariah, with most of her then-upcoming projects either being snatched from her hands (a Lena Horne biopic she was attached to suddenly booted her from the cast later that month) or left to survive on their own (Damita Jo, Jackson’s follow-up to 2001’s All For You that the Super Bowl act was meant to push, was barely recognized by the media).
Thirteen years later and not much has changed on that front, it seems. For example, when approached on Twitter by another journalist who felt that the omission of Jackson on his list was purposeful, Billboard writer Andrew Unterberger, who compiled the round-up, appeared to mock Janet fans who questioned his intentions by liking the tweet (Unterberger has since refrained from commenting further on his article).
In addition to that, while Jackson does receive her share of media attention nowadays, it is usually due to something wholly unrelated to her music career, such as the birth of her first son Eissa with husband Wissam Al-Mana, or the belief that her career is over, as gab queen Wendy Williams has done on more than one occasion on her daily talk fest.
The continued and blatant disrespect of one of the world’s last-living music legends finally got to be too much for longtime Janet Jackson fans Christopher Broughton, who brought the Billboard article to the widespread attention of Jackson’s massive fan base, and Lamont Hicks, a co-founder of the Facebook group Janet Euphoria who has been recognized in the past by Janet for his longtime dedication.
Coming “together again” with several members of Janet Euphoria and the entire #JanFam to make a necessary change, Broughton and Hicks recently began a “new agenda” of sorts with the Janet’s Legacy Matters project, a full-of-heart act that looks to set the matter straight when it comes to Jackson’s legendary pop music history.
“The media has attempted to erase Janet Jackson from the history books,” the duo explain on the Facebook page about the venture.
“For over 10 years, we have seen mainstream media outlets disregard, discredit, and demean Janet’s accomplishments, impact, and influence. That exclusion inspired this movement.”
Albeit in its infancy, the pact to defend and reaffirm Janet’s position in music has already started to show some great impact, with many followers of Jackson already taking to social media platforms to express why Janet’s legacy matters to them, and why it should matter to others as well.
Jackson herself has never directly spoken on the media ban, but she did lightly touch base with it during a sit down with Oprah Winfrey in 2006, two years after the Super Bowl scandal.
“I thought it was absurd,” she relayed, “very crazy. There was so much emphasis put on [my performance], but we were at war [at that time]. [There were] so [many] other important things going on in the world, and the focus was on my breast? That just didn’t make any sense to me.”
As Ms. Smith from The C-Spot tells it, Janet’s not the only person confused by the still-occurring outcome of her accidental actions.
“It has gotten so bad over the years,” the publication adds.
“Janet has stopped doing interviews and has taken to social media to promote her own releases. If that’s not enough, she started her own record label. This made her break history again. So try as they might, Janet’s legacy is the blueprint [and they] can’t erase that.”
Are you on-board with the “Janet’s Legacy Matters” movement, Inquisitr readers? Share your thoughts and favorite performances of the singer in the comments.
[Featured Image by Chris Pizzello/AP Photos]