Rap Genius Editors – Shawn's Guidelines Lyrics

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Welcome to Rap Genius. RG is a part of hip-hop, and thus certain guidelines must be laid out. To quote Upski, if you're new here, "You suck until further notice. It's gonna take a long time before we even acknowledge your existence, even longer before we can bear to look at that foul scribble you call [your notes]." With a bit of effort, though, you can show and prove yourself, bring your own style and personality to the site, and make it to editor status, where you in turn will be able to school young'uns about how things work around here

Just like life and English class, read before you start writing. Read the OG Contributor Guidelines. Look at the accounts of different editors. See what they have in common, and how they differ. For example, moshitup, SameOldShawn, and Excrement veer towards the serious, and Maboo, while as smart and knowledgeable as any of them, manages to be extremely funny WHILE WORKING IN RELEVANT INFORMATION (all you wanna-be comics, your shit will be deleted if you forget that part)

Also, make sure you have something to say. Writing a note just to get IQ points is the surest way to get your work destroyed. Rephrasing a lyric in slightly different words does not count as having something to say, by the way. Save that shit for Understand Rap

Another requirement -- if you're annotating a song by an artist, make sure you know more than one song by that artist. In fact, ideally you should know more than one album by that artist. Know the artist's main tropes, ideas, hit songs, fan favorites, arrest record, best interview quotes, beefs, high school GPA, favorite color, mom's name, etc

And please, know a little something about the genre as a whole. No one is saying that you have to know every record ever released to start work on the site. However, a knowledge of at least some of the important classic albums is necessary -- at the very least because they're referenced constantly. If you're not familiar with at least Nation of Millions, Straight Outta Compton, Critical Beatdown, Raising Hell, Aquemini, Illmatic, Ready to Die, Paid In Full, and the like, do yourself a favor and listen. Getting a grip on rap's legacy of recordings is a life-long job, and not everyone is or has to become an expert. However, the more you know, the more connections you will find and the better your work here is going to be

Additionally, be sure to back your shit up. Take a second, do some research, and add links to your notes. Like it or not, we are a resource for people, and thus have to back up our assertions. Pictures are important too, but having an account without any links is the surest way to mass deletion

If, having read all this, you're still game to try and contribute, then welcome aboard! Being a part of RG is the best way to have fun while becoming a better writer and a smarter, more well-rounded hip-hop fan. It's also a chance to get your writing and your style seen by tons of people, including likely the same artists whose work you're helping to explain. We're grateful to have you!

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