Anyone that concerns themselves with the viral squabbles between rappers can see how exceedingly over the top that the fights have become. The diss tracks, which the involved parties violently eject into SoundCloud, feature energized, abhorrent language targeted at the other rapper discussing matters such as lyrics, success, and personal lives. Why is this type of rhetoric then praised for the intensity and depth of the attack? This type of behavior in any other setting would necessarily bring shame to the one on the offensive. In the confines of this scene, a testament to one's artistry is how personal, and vitriolic that your lyrics can be. Unfortunately, once a rapper slings their petty ad hominem into SoundCloud for literally everyone to hear it, the onus is on the other rapper to heighten the feud and release something that is even more biting than the last attack.
It is curious that it seems that conflict between rappers has existed for the genre's entire, albeit short, existence. This could suggest that the hip hop community has thrived off of content created as a result of these beefs. Subject in rap music has now in 2018 expanded to the point that the range of topics involved is about as wide as any genres'. Therefore, rap songs have the capacity to go in on almost anything given that the words have meaning to the writer and the connection is felt by the audience. Rappers are more talented, more interesting, and more intelligent than they are allowing themselves to be. Nick Drake never put Bob Dylan on blast for some stylistic choice in one of his albums or for the attractiveness of his girlfriend. Nick Drake might not have even heard one of Dylan's albums, but if he wasn't charmed by his music he certainly wouldn't make music about it. They would have no reason to. In the end, there is nothing productive that comes from these fights. Rap's history does not need to be marred by the fact that even the most successful rappers made vicious attacks through song.
And I'm well aware that the music made during the beefs is usually kind of good. It is entertaining to watch grown adults publicly in all earnestness mock each other. It would be tasking to try and eliminate everything from my musical library that does involve someone at some point taking a shot at someone else. Sometimes the passion in the diss really gives a song some much needed lift. But at this point, if people are genuinely enthusiastic about the hateful, attacking music that diss tracks are, then disses in music are what frying oil is to food. It will almost categorically make it better. I am not a rapper, so this criticism may feel cheap, but would it not be a more creatively challenging yet satisfying endeavor to make something that isn't a diss? Obviously, if music is your craft and you are an artist that is making a living, then by all means do what you have to do. But the rappers that have achieved at the highest level in the music business have already proven that they have staying power; dissing and trying to invalidate the success of other rappers comes off lazy and cheap.
It is important for artists to promote themselves, and for their albums to gain the attention that they need; it is impossible for an artist to succeed without being able to brand themselves in some fashion. The reality is that a lot of these internet jousting sessions are to get people talking about the rappers. Instead of using you platform to ignite the inner child of a fellow musician, do anything else.