There is nothing cool about tinnitus

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Pitchfork have just announced a new series of events that ‘will focus on composers of extreme sound’. And the extremely clever name they’ve come up with for this party is “Tinnitus”. Yes, tinnitus as in that hearing problem that often comes from hearing loss and listening to too much loud music. Music so extreme that it fucks up your hearing? Wow. That must be cool! Yeah, well, except it is not. At all. Tinnitus and hearing loss are really important issues in electronic music that are rarely discussed. But this is something we do need to worry about. Too many people simply do not take care of their ears, whether DJing or partying. Given how severe and permanent the consequences can be, it is vitally important we all start being a bit more careful.

A few years ago I got a pair of custom fitted earplugs and it is honestly one of the best purchases I have ever made. I now carry them with me all the time, and it is very rare for me not to use them at a party. My biggest regret is that I was not smart enough to start using ear plugs earlier. To anyone who DJs or regularly attends parties, I strongly, strongly urge you to buy a pair of ear plugs. And if you can’t afford custom ones, you can get normal ones pretty cheaply that work ok. Whenever I go to a place like Berghain, where the music is so loud, it scares me to think that there are people in there for hours on end without protecting their ears. It just isn’t worth it…

We really need to be taking better care of our ears, and promoting awareness of the very serious dangers that come from listening to too much loud music. Given this, it is very disappointing that such an influential site like Pitchfork is doing something as stupid as glamorizing hearing loss. There are plenty of words or expressions they could have used to convey the idea of an extreme / powerful experience, calling these parties “Tinnitus” is dumb and unnecessary. Last year DJBroadcast published a good artice about DJs and problems with tinnitus. And it is worth noting that Pitchfork published a short piece about it earlier this year. But we need to be talking about it a lot more. We really need to increase awareness.  I hope other sites will follow their lead and write more on this important topic. And I really hope Pitchfork gets its act together and realizes calling a party “Tinnitus” is a fucking stupid move.

 

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