I was going to write a whole post about why I’m amazed at how pissed everyone is over TLC’s newest show, Tattoo School, but I don’t know if that’s even necessary. Sure, there’s plenty of reasons to be pissed off, especially if you’re a tattooer. Let’s all just take a deep breath and look at all the angles before we all go having a coronary:
The more we talk about it, the more people see it. While I’ve seen people saying “thanks for giving them all the free advertising they need”… while I see what you’re saying, I don’t think an ostrich with it’s head in the sand type of approach is going to do anyone any favors.
Last I counted there were three different groups/fan pages on Facebook regarding the boycotting of TLC/the show. Each of these groups has at least 5,000 members – one has damn near 10,000. Between that and the online petitions I’ve seen linked left and right, I’m curious why people are breaking off into smaller groups. If we’re all so determined to do something, it makes far more sense for us all to work together toward the common goal.
That being said, I don’t think banning or boycotting are feasible demands. I do think we should be reaching out to TLC in an effort to make it known that what they’re doing by broadcasting this show sucks–but let’s take a step back: the 20,000 people or so that are making this a hot topic on the internet are still a small portion of the number of people TLC is hoping will tune in for the show’s premiere. And honestly, if you’re reading this site (or any other along similar lines) you are not part of TLC’s target demographic for this particular piece. In short: they’ve already filmed, edited and set an air date for the show. Nobody is going to keep that episode from showing; but we should be gearing up for damage control, on chance that the show lasts more than a few episodes.
This isn’t the first time the issue of tattoo schools has been raised, either. Like this post from December: Thoughts On Tattoo Schools by Tim Pangburn. Hopefully, we can benefit from this situation by forcing us to be aware of changes people are trying to tattooing by skipping the steps you’d think would be considered mandatory to enter into the tattooing industry. Personally, I don’t want anything to do with someone that didn’t have to suffer (yeah, I went there: SUFFER) through a legit apprenticeship. Regardless of Lisa’s skill as a tattooer–and I’m using that term really loosely right now–I can think of plenty of amazing tattooers that apprenticed under shitty artists. But they apprenticed; they didn’t spend a couple thousand dollars for a two week crash course before being unleashed with a certificate as proof of their ability to show up to class on time. I don’t want to believe anyone would approach tattooing the same way they would a CPR course.
As an aside, can we stop with the posting of Lisa Fasulo’s contact information? She’s already filmed the show – what is harassment going to do at this point aside from cause headaches? I do not support her or what she’s doing, but this is the type of situation where taking the high road is going to allow us to do the most good, for ourselves as well as the industry we’re trying to defend.
And now, allow me to inject a some humor into the situation: