Does Your Artist Want to Be An Activist? A New Social Action Platform Aims to Make It Easier

A new social action platform, ShowUp, wants to make it easy for artists to integrate activism into album releases, touring strategies and other components of their work.

Launching Monday (Aug. 28), ShowUp connects artists with organizations supporting the causes they care about in order to create, support and scale activism in the music industry. The platform is currently linked with more than 300 hand-selected nonprofit organizations across climate justice, social justice, women’s rights, LGBTQ activism and more. (Using a broader search, users can access more than 1.7 million international organizations.)

ShowUp will be activated by artists as the demand for projects that incorporate activism grows within the industry and among fans. This connection to artists is being facilitated by ShowUp’s partners at launch: ADA Worldwide, Downtown, EMPIRE, The Orchard and Symphonic Distribution.

“Ultimately, ShowUp is an artist services tool, and collectively our partners act as a broadcast point for us to over 100,000 artists and growing,” says ShowUp co-founder/CEO Mat Hall. “ShowUp provides timely and forward-thinking, actionable information and tools to our partners to inform and activate artists.”

Hall continues, “How can artists help our neighbors in Maui? What local organizations can artists support during Hispanic Heritage Month? How can an artist support women’s reproductive health in Mississippi? The teams and leaders we work with daily at our partners help us identify artists across their roster interested in this work and help shape the campaigns we create.”

ShowUp also makes it possible for qualifying artists to select an organization to dedicate a portion of their royalties to via a new release or catalog track. Admin for this function happens seamlessly through existing split-share technology on each partner’s backend.

ShowUp will also provide artists with data regarding who gave what, where and when so that artist teams can identify the activism-oriented segments of their fanbases.

“Our goal isn’t to turn every artist into an activist,” says Hall. “This work isn’t for everyone. However, we do want to make sure that any artist practicing activism, or who may be inclined to do so, has the tools and support so that, when they decide to speak out about what’s important to them, their message reaches the broadest possible audience and drives the greatest financial impact possible to the communities and concerns they are supporting.”

Hall adds that this goal makes label and distribution partners essential to ShowUp’s work.

“Providing a scalable platform for artists to raise awareness and engagement while delivering impactful, measurable results for causes they support enhances our value proposition in meaningful ways,” The Orchard president/COO Colleen Theis adds in a press release. “We are proud to partner with ShowUp to make advocacy and fundraising integral components of The Orchard’s client offering.”

“We all know ‘why’ this work is imperative, but many of us get lost at ‘what’ and ‘how,’” added ADA Worldwide president Cat Kreidich. “ShowUp helps answer these questions, and has been a valuable and practical starting point for our artists and teams as we all consider our potential for impact.”

Added Downtown Music Holdings chief commercial officer Tracy Maddux: “Activism is becoming an increasingly important part of how creators interact with their audience and the world around them. ShowUp provides them a platform to do this authentically and effectively and Downtown is a proud partner in helping make their voices heard.”

“Integrating the ShowUp platform allows our artists to seamlessly support the things that matter to them,” said EMPIRE chief product officer Stephen White. “When artists make these commitments, our artist teams have an incredibly powerful new marketing tool that not only drives advocacy and fundraising, but new channels of fan and streaming engagement. Everyone benefits.”