Wikipedia is a fickle friend. Sure, it'll help you learn about everything under the sun, but you can't rely on it for anything. And being an online encyclopedia, it doesn't take sides, which is why electronic musician Grimes (aka Claire Boucher) finds herself in her current predicament. The 26-year-old previously made statements regarding her use of amphetamines while making her first album, and Grimes now wants these statements taken off her Wikipedia page.
Let's back up to the quote in question: two years ago, while doing an interview with CMJ for her first album Visions, Grimes described the environment in which her creation was born. "I blacked out the windows and did tons of amphetamines and stayed up for three weeks and didn't eat anything," she said. But now, after losing some good friends to the influence of drugs, Grimes wants the statement retracted from her Wikipedia page. In a post on her Tumblr, she says:
losing people to drugs and alcohol is the worst because they destroy any good memories you have of them before forcing you to deal with the empty space they leave behind. also whoever keeps putting the few quotes i said early in my career about drugs back into my wikipedia page is an asshole. I don't want that to be part of my narrative, and if it has to be I want people to know that i hate hard drugs. All they've ever done is kill my friends and cause me to be unproductive. Editing a website that people take seriously and reference all the time so that it looks like i think amphetamines are cool is incredibly irresponsible, people might read that and think its a cool thing to emulate. I hope you know you are doing the world a disservice. I just watched another person I care deeply about basically turn into gollum and my heart is broken.
Wikipedia has not taken down the statement but, in true Wikipedia fashion, they have noted Grimes' dissent below the original quote. And truthfully, although her statements are positive, her anger is a little misdirected. Grimes made the quote on the record, and even if Wikipedia did take it down (although they're still perfectly within their rights to use it), it will still exist in the original interviews.
While Grimes taking a stance against Wikipedia may be ineffective, her statements are not. The important part of her Tumblr post isn't where she takes Wikipedia to task; it's where she clarifies her stance on hard drugs. She can't change the past or retract her quotes, but she can take a stand and look toward the future. She may have used drugs in the past, but her experiences since then have changed her. Many musicians either glorify hard drugs or remain mum on the subject, but Grimes talking about how drugs have hurt her and people she loves can help a lot of people.
She can't take back the statements she's made in the past, but it's admirable she's made new ones, ones that will make her a better, more positive role model for her fans.