Duck Dynasty – What Happens Next?
As popular as Duck Dynasty has been, there has never been this much talk about it.
The cyber-world, TV and radio shows, newspapers, everyone's talking about what Phil Robertson said in an interview with GQ magazine and A&E's subsequent suspension of him from Duck Dynasty. And has this ever stirred up the hive of the show's millions of fans... That's a fact, Jack!
Let's get past all this talk about freedom of speech and get to what's really going to matter in the long term, and that's freedom of reaction. There are always consequences to what is said or done: A&E dumping Phil is the consequence of what he said in the interview. As a result, the counter-reaction has been a tidal wave of support for Phil and disdain for A&E. But a tidal wave is exactly what the network is hoping this will be.
A tidal wave comes on shore and creates chaos and causes destruction, but the actual wave is usually short-lived. There will be clean up and damage control. There will be damage in the form of some short-term lost viewership, but A&E knows that history has shown that time is on their side. People forget, people lose passion, people get caught up in other activities, and the groundswell and frontal assault eases over time. A&E would rather appease those vocal groups and sponsors that are offended by Phil's remarks because they believe there is more money to be lost in the long run if they didn't react this way.
Money. Remember that. That's what it's all about in decisions such as this.
So, what happens next?
That completely depends upon the millions who have been stirred to action by A&E's decision. If the past is any indication, the vast majority of those millions will not keep the passion going for this movement to support Phil and the show, and A&E will have correctly predicted the apathy following the initial wave. However, if these millions can continue to build their collective voices through the weeks and months ahead, a heck of a showdown could be looming.