Last week we broke the story of Weird Al Yankovic's "Don't Download This Song" video being bleeped
on MTV when the names of file sharing apps were mentioned. The NY Times thankfully got to the bottom of the story after a conversation with Weird Al himself
. Apparently, MTV had told him two years ago (when the video was released) that they would not play it on TV without the file sharing names taken out. Yankovic himself added the beeps and tried to make them as extreme as possible to highlight the ridiculousness of it all:
Instead of subtly removing or obscuring the words in the track, I made the creative decision to bleep them out as obnoxiously as possible, so that there would be no mistake I was being censored.
He doesn't know if the video ever actually aired on TV, so it's likely no one even saw the bleeped video until MTV launched their online video site. He points out, as we noted, that the uncensored version is available on YouTube
, but doesn't explain why embedding that video is forbidden as well.