Madonna did not release her tracks on iTunes over the weekend. She has spoken out about the surprise release from her Rebel Heart album, saying that the tracks were unfinished and stolen. However, she has since been forced to defend the decision for the words she used to describe the theft.
During a statement, she said that the hack was “artistic rape” and a “form of terrorism.” This led to a number of complaint from people over the choice of words. Madonna says that these are her feelings and opinions, and believes that she is being personally attacks and terrorized. This is different to someone coming in and taking a painting off a wall. For an artist to have work stole is a devastating violation. The words and music is an form of expression for the singer.
Six tacks from her upcoming album Rebel Heart were released on iTunes on Saturday. At first, many people believed that they were from the artist herself, and an early present since she said that she would release them for those who pre-ordered the album. The album is set for release in March 2015. As soon as her tracks were released, they reached number one on the iTunes chart in 26 different countries.
However, Madonna quickly released a statement to say that she did not release the tracks on iTunes for general sale. She believes that somebody hacked her personal computer and stole the music. The fact that they reached the number one spot is a “miracle.” All the tracks were unfinished recordings dating back from earlier this year.
This is not the first time a musician has found her tracks released online without consent. Kanye West was involved in a hack last year. His whole upcoming album Yeezus was released, just after an article titled 8 Reasons You Won’t Hear Yeezus Early was shared on Buzzfeed. The hard drive that the music was stored on was reportedly designed to withstand a tsunami or plane crash.
Madonna had no illusions that hacking was impossible. That does not mean she is happy about the situation. She has looked into reasons for the hack, and suggests that there may have been several previous security breaches traced to other record company employees. Her music was not the only property released online at the time.
There were images that the artist had never seen in the past, and it led to her wondering about the source of the leak. This was not just one person doing it, which is why she believes she is being attacked personally. It is not the first time her music has leaked online, but the fact that the music is from demo versions from March 2014 is the most “disturbing” part.
The news of the leak comes just weeks after the Sony hacking scandal. It is forcing the musician and the whole entertainment industry to reconsider working practices. People need to reconsider how to share information and music between each other. Emails are obviously no longer safe, and any form of cloud storage is open to hacking. This was noted earlier this year with the nude photo hacking scandal that involved Jennifer Lawrence and many other female celebrities.
It is disappointing for artists, but fans have enjoyed the tracks. However, Madonna says that she did not release the tracks on iTunes, and calls the whole experience a “form of terrorism.”
By Alexandria Ingham
Photo by Pascal Mannaerts