GIA acted despicably
  • MarkB
    Posts: 630
    Article here:
    https://reason.com/2021/06/15/daniel-elder-cancel-culture-choral-composer-antifa-blm-gia/

    Germane excerpt:

    Within 24 hours, the controversy had garnered the attention of GIA Publications. In the world of choral music, GIA is not merely a publisher; it is the major publisher of religious content, thanks to its association with the post–Vatican II Roman Catholic Church. GIA was Elder's publisher, and an important source of his income. On the morning of June 1, GIA President Alec Harris and media editor Susan LaBarr contacted Elder about posting an apology.

    This apology had already been written by GIA; all Elder had to do was post it. The remarks prepared on his behalf are as follows, and worth reading in full:

    "Over the weekend I made a post on my social media accounts that was insensitive and wrongly-worded. I deeply apologize for the anger, offense, and harm that this post caused. While this offense was not intended, it is what was created. For this I am truly sorry.

    "There is no justification that I can offer for my post. So, rather than try to offer an excuse for what was done, I offer a promise for what I will do going forward. I commit to making amends and to dialogue. I commit to continue educating myself about privilege and bias. I commit to continue seeking an understanding of the experience of others, especially the Black community. I know that working for justice requires that we each first act justly. My work begins now."

    LaBarr added that while "we know that you write music that promotes social justice," this was not clear to people who had read the Instagram post.

    "We're feeling time pressure on this as some people are calling for boycotts," added LaBarr. "It's all very heavy."

    Elder wasn't inclined to make such a groveling apology, and was dismayed to see his colleagues siding with his critics.

    "I chose to be that guy who didn't issue the apology," he says. "Things went from there and it wasn't good."

    Within hours, GIA issued a denunciation of Elder.

    "The views expressed in composer Daniel Elder's incendiary social media post on Sunday evening do not reflect the values of GIA or our employees," it read. "GIA opposes racism in all its forms and is committed to do what Michelle Obama called 'the honest, uncomfortable work of rooting it out.'"

    Note this PR statement endorses the view that Elder had made an "incendiary" statement. Neither Harris nor LaBarr responded to a request for clarification as to which aspect of Elder's anti-arson agenda they oppose.

    GIA also announced that the company would no longer publish Elder.

    "We are grateful to those who brought this to our attention and to all who continue to hold individuals and organizations to account," the statement concluded.

    GIA made this announcement on Facebook. Virtually all the comments were supportive, though one person asked why the company had not scrubbed all referenced to Elder on its website. ("What's the plan?" asked this individual. "Keep supporting a bigot?")

    GIA deserves to be shunned. I urge everyone to give them as little business as possible, which is what I will do.

    No GIA Mass settings, hardly any GIA music. No future purchases.

    They publish and employ people who live publicly and advocate in ways that are gravely contrary to Catholic faith and morality and publish their works in hymnals intended for Catholic consumption. But they fired this composer for standing for decency because they feared the woke mob and couldn't tolerate anything except blind conformity to wokeness.

    Time to call them out on their woke BS. Screw you, GIA. Nobody needs your lousy music.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,327
    Though I'm currently quite unhappy about being shoved towards OCP instead, a lot of GIA has never been to my taste either. This appears to be last year's news though, and it's not clear from Elder's GIA page what has happened in the meantime, besides his having taken up blogging: here's Equity Silences the Muse (!). So, now we're supposed to 'cancel' an entire publisher?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    Didn't GIA look the other way for years at the Haas escapades? Oh yeah, they were making money on that. They are hypocrites.
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  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 1,215
    Screw ‘em. They were perhaps the better option until 2012 or so, but they bowdlerized so much in Worship IV, Gather 3 and 4 are dumpster fires, they’re just third-rate these days, to say the least.

    Support St Michael Hymnal, Adam Bartlett & Co, Noel Jones & Co, the best of Oxford University Press, and let the rest fall by the wayside.
  • Schönbergian
    Posts: 825
    This guy goes down in a matter of days, but it took them decades to move on Haas?
    Thanked by 2MarkB tomjaw
  • MarkB
    Posts: 630
    Decades ago news and rumors didn't reach large numbers of people except through ABC, CBS, NBC or the Associated Press, and it often took days or weeks for a story to become widely known. Letter-writing campaigns against companies didn't do much.

    Now we have Facebook, Instagram and Twitter internet pile-ons that can reach a fever pitch among millions of people on their phones in only a few hours, and companies are scared witless about being on the receiving end of a negative social media campaign.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • CatholicZ09
    Posts: 109
    His dismissal was based on assumptions as to what he meant in a Facebook post. Denouncing arson is now racist. Got it.

    And: “hope that you find a way to lose that hate in your heart.” Stop. Just stop with the holier-than-thou BS.
  • pfreese
    Posts: 138
    All of GIA’s notable moves of late reek of desperation. Even before the David Haas scandal they’ve been losing their competitive edge. Frankly, for as forward-thinking and progressive as they like to think they are, their offerings are incredibly dated (even compared to OCP) and large segments of the Church no longer want what they offer. The more P&W crowd has shifted to OCP and the Matt Mahers (which are spurning hymnals, GIA’s big moneymaker), traditional has moved to St. Michael, Credo, Lumen Cristi, etc. To me, this at least partially explains why they’ve quadrupled down on being Woke, because the aforementioned groups have bailed and the withering and aging Catholic left and liberal Protestant churches are rapidly becoming the only ones they have left.

    With that in mind, the schizophrenic removals of David Haas (100% justified) and Dan Elder, with an eye to discreetly continue profiting from both, starts to make some sense. Their business as it stands is not a growing one and they’re desperate to not piss off what remains of their greatly dwindled customer base. Their brand alone won’t save them and they know it. Speaking of, I wouldn’t be surprised if their takeover of WLP wasn’t significantly motivated by hedging projected long term losses, since WLP wasn’t in a great competitive position either.
  • GIA

    Publishes

    Crap.
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  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,745
    I had thought this had been discussed here at the time, but all that comes up in search for "Daniel Elder" is a comment I made in a discussion about "GIA's other cancellation"

    I got a wild idea after reading this last night: somebody needs to commission Catholic liturgical music from Daniel Elder.

    Most of his choral music has been secular. I don't know whether he'd be up for it. His style is more suited for the OF than the EF, which should be a red flag. But after what he's been though, who knows what he'd come up with? It's a plausible style, anyway.

    This story could have a magnificent redemption arc (maybe, Holy Spirit willing, even literally). "Church saves composer's career. while his former publisher looks on enviously." Ideally, the commission would also involve publication. I don't have the connections to make this happen (If I did, I'd be making it happen for ME, lol!) but somebody out there must.
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,745
    Johnathan Gibbs was the activist who originally raised the mob against Elder, leading to GIA's action.

    On June 7, because of his continuing activism antics, and at the request of the membership, he was expelled from the New York City Gay Men's Chorus.

    I pray that this leads him to reflection and repentance.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,345
    I'm not woke enough to eat breakfast, but last summer was absolutely insane.
  • MarkB
    Posts: 630
    What I consider most objectionable and revealing is that GIA bigwigs had the gall to prewrite an absurd, contrived "apology" riddled with buzzwords and rightthink for Elder and they expected him to issue it as if it were his own statement before they even asked him about his original post or what it meant. GIA acted like the Chinese Communist Party clamping down on a dissident. Good for Elder for refusing and for telling the whole story about what the company did to him.
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 826
    What I consider most objectionable and revealing is that GIA bigwigs had the gall to prewrite an absurd, contrived "apology" riddled with buzzwords and rightthink for Elder and they expected him to issue it as if it were his own statement before they even asked him about his original post or what it meant.

    Exactly.
    To say nothing of the fact that he didn't actually do or say anything bad to begin with.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    GIA has needed its panties seriously yanked for some time. I am glad he didn't give in to them.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,327
    Good for Elder for refusing and for telling the whole story

    That seems to be the opposite of what he did, at least as far as I can easily see: there's this, purporting to be his actual statement,
    I empathically sense a toxic disregard for diversity whenever I’m online … Without mercy I permanently deleted my Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter accounts and crawled back into bed
    and this invitation. GIA still publishes his work.
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  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 2,611
    Richard - I don't know what you see. I think what I saw, but from thousands of miles away while Elder was up close, was a peaceful mass movement of protest at a murder, followed by an attempt to destroy that impulse to good by introducing violence, particularly arson, under pretence of supporting the protest.
    Elder supported the mass protest, his tweet expressed his helpless rage at the subversion of the protest.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,327
    What I have read is what is blue-linked in this thread, including a reason.com article invoking 'cancel culture' and claiming Elder is "blackballed", and a GIA page promoting Elder as a clinician and composer and linking to his in-print works. I presume the Facebook statement was actually made by someone at GIA, but this hardly seems like the full story and Walter Cronkite isn't available to settle matters. Since the posting here (!) another article has appeared, not adding anything to the reason.com article it cites.
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  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    Greg Gutfeld just covered this story on his show. He noted that GIA stands for Groveling Idiotic A-holes. He named corporate officers and mentioned something along the lines that if Christ were here they would write an apology for him to the Pharisees. He went on to say GIA is spineless. Then one of his show characters, the angry white man, sang "I'm Sorry," over and over again in melismatic Gregorian chant.
    Thanked by 1Carol
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,659
    Rather than Greg Gutfeld's take on "GIA" - my immediate reaction was that now G.I.A. stands for "God In Ashes" (which aligns with the "incendiary" & "arson" aspects of this sordid affair).
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    I would now think twice before buying anything from them.
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,463
    Charles... do the math... twice is two times too much.
    Thanked by 2CharlesW CHGiffen
  • All I know is that I want the angry white male to join my schola.
  • Carol
    Posts: 679
    I saw that "chant" last night and wondered if it would be mentioned today.
  • And I just bought a Graduale Triplex from them... ugh...
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 826
    Casavant, I had no idea that GIA (otherwise known as the Gregorian Institute of America) Even produced books of chant anymore. Call me a monkey‘s uncle.
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,463
    saw that "chant" last night and wondered if it would be mentioned today.
    Was that a pre or post solemnes method?
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    Don't know, but it didn't sound like Haugen. I think GIA may have stepped in it up to their Haas on this one.
    Thanked by 1Carol
  • rich_enough
    Posts: 865
    @ServiamScores
    GIA only distributes the chant books. They're published by Solesmes.

    (And I've heard that they officially dropped the "Gregorian Institute of America" name years ago. The name "GIA" (not G.I.A.) is no longer considered an acronym.)
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    They could change it to GAIA to complement some of the music they publish.
    Thanked by 2MarkB ServiamScores
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,463
    Oh darn Charles.... You were typing at the same time that I was
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,169
    Great minds think alike, Francis.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,777
    A friend and I took to pronouncing GIA as 'gaia' back in the early 2010s.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • Scott_WScott_W
    Posts: 462
    I've been re-evaluating most of my consumer habits recently. Here's a short book from Catholic sci-fi author Brian Niemeier I've found helpful: Don't Give Money to People Who Hate You
  • JaredOstermann
    Posts: 463
    Richard Mix - you say he did the opposite of telling the whole story, and then post a link to him literally telling the whole story. Am I missing something about what you're trying to say? Do you possess some inside information on the situation, beyond the publicly-available statements of the parties involved?

    Elder still has a composer page on GIA - so presumably the ban on him only applies to future compositions. I suppose they still hope to sell of their existing inventory...

    I don't know Elder or his music, so I don't have a dog in the fight, but I'm curious as to why you think the story is somehow a lie, or mis-reported. Nothing about it seems implausible in our current cultural climate.
  • Here is the sniveling, outrageous statement GIA Publications tried to force Daniel Elder to 'issue' after he condemned arson:

    “Over the weekend I made a post on my social media accounts that was insensitive and wrongly-worded. I deeply apologize for the anger, offense, and harm that this post caused. While this offense was not intended, it is what was created. For this I am truly sorry.

    “There is no justification that I can offer for my post. So, rather than try to offer an excuse for what was done, I offer a promise for what I will do going forward. I commit to making amends and to dialogue. I commit to continue educating myself about privilege and bias. I commit to continue seeking an understanding of the experience of others, especially the Black community. I know that working for justice requires that we each first act justly. My work begins now.”
  • bhcordovabhcordova
    Posts: 968
    Okay, a lot here has been written condemning GIA, but nowhere do I see the post they were responding to. What was this 'incendiary post' that started all this?
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 826
    The article linked in the very first post has a screenshot of his social media post.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,327
    So, he's deleted his social media, but the claims are: 1) the brouhaha is over a single post, including the words "I'm done", 2) GIA will, or maybe already has, turned down future work, while promoting past work and availability as a clinician on their website. If this were in front of Judge Judy, wouldn't we be expecting a little cross-examination about now?
    Thanked by 2CHGiffen CharlesW
  • bhcordovabhcordova
    Posts: 968
    Serviam, for some reason, I thought that was his response to GIA. Given the situation ath the time, I can see how his message was ripe for misunderstanding. There is no mention of the fires being set in Nashville.
  • ContinuousbassContinuousbass
    Posts: 340
    What GIA did is evil…to a composer. To the random person what GIA did was attempt to keep the composer employed, diplomatically, in a corporate fashion. Someone at GIA became sensitized to the potential for PR damage that one of their associated composers had become the composer of a negatively-perceived mind virus regarding BLM arson. GIA then thought they would treat a composer like a corporate employee…okay…
    He broadcast his statement which I take to mean that a hotspot of local arsons should cause one to be completely "done" with the charitable and contrite consideration of a downtrodden or oppressed segment of society.
    GIA tried to compose something for a composer and received non-compliance in response. I think the composer and GIA have grounds for divorce, at best. A boycott of this novel composer's publisher is called for by the poster in response to this non-situation. The claim that there is a particular wokenness involved here is hyperbolic. Musicians should be "Wachet Auf" at heart. I'm waiting for the musicological criticism that should produce a desire to cancel a publisher. Publishers aren't really musicians- they are not going to immediately understand how to interact with diverse musical personnel. "They" could be interns.
  • Schönbergian
    Posts: 825
    He broadcast his statement which I take to mean that a hotspot of local arsons should cause one to be completely "done" with the charitable and contrite consideration of a downtrodden or oppressed segment of society.
    I don't see how one could extrapolate that Elder was done caring about black people or police brutality from his post. He was tired of the violence which had nothing to do with the political issue at hand, and you'd be hard-pressed to say that's an unreasonable viewpoint.

    Also, arguing that musicians should be "woke" by nature is a bit of a stretch. I don't see how unquestioned support of the social issue of the week has anything to do with my profession.
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 826
    To the random person what GIA did was attempt to keep the composer employed, diplomatically, in a corporate fashion.


    Well, THIS random person is very tired of corporate and pre-fab statements and apologies that conveniently hit all the talking points to perfectly appease the idiot masses. You know these statements are utterly false and the people issuing them don’t mean them. I don’t see this as an attempt to keep the composer employed… I view it 100% as the company trying to deflect negative press to cover their own arses and it didn’t have his welfare in view at all. Also, none of this woke mess will go away until people grow some spines and let random people online be mad at them. Who gives a rip?
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,463
    Also, none of this woke mess will go away until people grow some spines and let random people online be mad at them.
    Bravo... Chuck your nom de plume and face your enemies and accusers squarely. If a little spit makes you run what happens when you have to choose Christ and a cross?
  • Chuck your nom de plume and face your enemies and accusers squarely


    one reason I've never had an online moniker different from who I am.
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  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 826
    PsalliteDomino.com

    Full bio and pic. I haven’t really tried to hide my identity, and some of the scores I’ve shared here before have had my name on them.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • MarkB
    Posts: 630
    I'm reliably told that both major publishers are hurting. Sales -- of hymnals, missals, octavos, CDs, subscriptions -- are down significantly. The only product or service making money is One License.

    Parishes have changed their music consumption and purchasing habits.

    If they're anything like my program, all I buy is the One License subscription and new choral hymnals for new choir members. The parish used to purchase Breaking Bread every year, but I put a stop to that wastefulness within three months of taking over the job.
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