In one of the most bizarre award handouts we’ve ever witnessed, Kanye West is set to be honoured by the Webby Awards for his “excellence on the internet”.
The awards, which are handed out by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, were set-up in 1996 to highlight the work of those who have used the internet – back then a fledgling media phenomenon – in new and exciting ways.
It may seem a strange choice to hand Yeezy – who is known among the wider reaches of popular culture more for his bizarre Twitter rants than anything else – the most sought after Webby Award, but the Academy has been at pains to justify their choice.
West’s decision to premiere his album The Life Of Pablo as a Tidal exclusive (despite the fact it hit just about every other streaming service about a month later) was one of the main reasons for the Academy’s praises, as was his G.O.O.D. Friday series of weekly track releases, which began in 2010:
“Not only did the G.O.O.D. Friday series predate the ‘silent album drops’ by years, but it was a low-cost, high-wattage compliment to his Twitter presence, where he is divisive and unafraid to speak his mind, share his woes and spread love to his fans, family and fellow artists.”
It applauded the divisive rapper for “changing the cultural paradigm of how music is shared, released, presented and consumed.”
“As an unmissable voice online and an unstoppable force in the digital music arena, it is our privilege to honour him as 2016’s Webby Artist of the Year,” the Academy said.
Rolling Stone are reporting that West will actually turn up in person to collect his award at the ceremony on May 16 in New York City.
The ceremony will be available to view online the next day, presumably because the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences hasn’t quite worked out live streaming yet.
For now, let’s bask in some of Kanye’s paradigm shifting, internet excellence:
BILL COSBY INNOCENT !!!!!!!!!!
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) February 9, 2016
What if Kanye made a song about Kanye
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) March 31, 2016
On another note, I strongly dislike suit jackets. I used the word dislike because I hate the word hate.
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) March 23, 2016