WATCH YOUR MOUTH NOW
Isn't it ironic? It seems to me, that creative people, the people who express themselves the most--whether visually, musically, or literally--are the ones who must be the most careful about freedom of expression of their own personal thoughts. Oh, the irony.
I just thought about this idea when I read blog post by Tess Gerritsen called "Why I Haven't Been Blogging." I can understand what she's saying. The joy and pleasure of blogging for her has been killed by responses to some of her posts in which readers disagreed. She states that she has been called names in response to her thoughts. As a result, she has tried to edit, edit, and edit her posts until she was sure that she wouldn't offend anyone. As a result, she then saw her blog as a marketing tool, which wasn't her original intention in blogging.
There are lots of people who blog about anything that they want and there are even those that blog with the intention of offending. But usually, those that do aren't trying to sell a product to as many people as they possibly can. They have less to lose than an artist or they are satisfied with a small audience of like minds. Even corporations are careful about statements from board members, or the organizations that they sponsor. All the time you see companies pulling advertising or contracts from persons who have expressed negative comments or have behaved in a way that most find unfavorable (whether they agree with the comments or behavior or not).
It seems that whatever art that you're in, you are silenced about having an opinion regarding products of that art, lest you suffer consequences of a resulting negative image and loss of sales of your own art. The price of sharing your opinion. A visual artist who criticizes the work of another may be seen as arrogant and full of themselves. A writer who reads and shares their opinion of books, especially in the genre in which they write, can become the target of personal attacks and vicious verbal attacks of their own work, while non-writers may share the same opinions. And it may be this discerning eye of that art that may have shaped them to be the well crafted artist that they may have become.
So what do we learn? If you're an artist, the best thing that you can do is be quiet. It's hard enough trying to write what you want without someone finding something offensive in it. But to give opinions of what you love or to share with others your thoughts on various topics...well, maybe you should keep that to yourself. Of course, then, you may seem to be all about marketing and promotion only.