It’s a sleepy, cold Monday morning and who knows what sort of slings and arrows this week will throw at us, so get your dose of good news in and get it quick: Over the weekend, Linkin Park have hit United States President Donald Trump with a cease & desist, joining the swelling audience of musicians to clap back at the embattled leader’s flagrant misuse of their original material for his own promotion.
In a campaign video posted over the weekend and reshared by Trump, Linkin Park’s iconic ‘In The End’ was featured, and very much without the appropriate approval to do so. Given his track record as President it’s no real shock that Trump’s team felt emboldened to infringe on IP law in such a public way. The real head scratcher is why a song with the hook “I tried so hard, and got so far, but in the end, it doesn’t even matter” was used to bolster a supposedly dwindling base into a rousing united front.
Seriously – the eerie campaign video makes little to no sense short of being an attempt at fear mongering, written by someone who’s only experience with human emotions was what they read about them on Wikipedia, delivered with Michael Bay-level energy.
As per their rules regarding the blatant violation of IP laws, Twitter has since removed the initial tweet, but the campaign video remains online.
Linkin Park were quick to address the situation, taking to social media to confirm something that never really needed to be said, especially if you’re familiar with the band, their work and their sociopolitical leanings. In fact, those paying attention will recall a 2017 tweet from the late Chester Bennington where he deemed Trump “A greater threat to the USA than terrorism.”
Linkin Park did not and does not endorse Trump, nor authorize his organization to use any of our music. A cease and desist has been issued.— LINKIN PARK (@linkinpark) July 19, 2020
However that didn’t stop a wave of disgruntled ‘fans’ taking to socials to give Linkin Park the full Nike treatment, denouncing their support for the group, before breaking their own toys and storming off.
In a likely attempt to at least appear to be avoiding heat over the situation, the campaign video in question used a cover of ‘In The End’ performed by Tommee Profitt featuring Fleurie and Jung Youth, per Rolling Stone. However, it doesn’t appear that camp was any more thrilled about it than Linkin Park, with Youth taking a similar stance.
Earlier today I found out that trump illegally used a cover song that I am part of in a propaganda video which he tweeted…anyone who knows me knows I stand firmly against bigotry and racism. Much love to everyone in the twitter community who helped get the video taken down fr!!— JUNG YOUTH (@JUNGYOUTHmusic) July 19, 2020