See Her Reaction – Billboard

Here’s SZA’s Five-Word Acceptance Speech at 2023 Webby Awards – Billboard


SZA got into the spirit of the Webby Awards’ signature five-word acceptance speeches – and got a little practice for the many acceptance speeches she’ll likely be giving during awards season – at Monday night’s (May 15) 2023 Webby Awards, held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York. The awards, now in their 27th year, celebrate individuals and organizations demonstrating excellence on the Internet.

SZA received the Webby Award for artist of the year for her smash album, SOS, which logged 10 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard 200. The award cited “her instant classic SOS, the authentic intention and consideration she injects into her work, and her genius use of the Internet to share unique, brilliantly honest art.” Choreographer Parris Goebel presented the award. SZA’s (honest) speech: “The internet scares me, thanks!” (Honorees are limited to a five-word response.)

This year’s Webby Awards were hosted by Roy Wood Jr., best known for his appearances on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. Throughout the night, Wood riffed on such topics as Chinese spy balloons, the metaverse, AI-generated music and Silicon Valley Bank. He even broke out in song to say goodbye to Twitter’s iconic blue check. 

“By making us collectively smile, laugh, cry and dance, you’ve connected us and reminded us of our shared humanity,” Webby Awards president Claire Graves told those assembled. The Webbys also put a spotlight on two important social movements – the protests in Iran and Black Lives Matter. 

DJ Jazzy Jeff presented the special achievement Webby Award to rapper Tobe Nwigwe, a Grammy nominee for best new artist this past year. Nwigwe was cited “for his innovative use of the Internet to create art that is imaginative and poignant as seen in his album moMINTS and his role as ‘Nick’ in the Netflix series Mo.” Nwingwe’s edgy acceptance speech: “A real ni**a won HA.”

Tracee Ellis Ross, the former star of the long-running sitcom black-ish, accepted the Webby special achievement award “for her ingenious use of the Internet to share multigenerational stories of belonging, increase Black representation in the beauty industry, and serve as a constant, positive force.” Ross’ speech: “You ain’t seen nothing yet.”

Hoda Kotb accepted the Webby Award for individual episodes-interview/talk show, presented by Wilmer Valderrama, for her interview with actress Viola Davis on her podcast Making Space with Hoda Kotb. In her speech, she said, “Listen, love, love, love. BYE!”

Actor John Slattery presented the Webby Award for best actress to his former Modern Love co-star Sharon Horgan “for capturing the Internet’s attention with her acclaimed Apple TV+ show Bad Sisters, and for her career as a voice of radical self-awareness and razor-sharp wit.” Horgan used her five-word speech to advocate for her fellow writers in the midst of the ongoing Hollywood scribe strike, demanding, “Pay writers what they deserve.”

Lizz Winstead presented the Webby special achievement award to Under the Desk News’ Vitus “V” Spehar “for making the news accessible and understandable to young people through their candid, hard-hitting and synoptic reporting, all done in bite-sized pieces on TikTok.” V told the audience “You are smart. Trust yourself.”

Wyatt Cenac presented the lifetime achievement Webby Award to Shigetaka Kurita, creator of the emoji, who broke ground with the first ever 5-emoji acceptance speech highlighting how emojis connect people around the world.

Other notable five-word speeches include:

•           “This is for the Bronx.” – Kerry Washington

•           “I have no words. F***.” – Gordon Ramsey

•           “Watch your words, they’re powerful.” – David Free

•           “Have kids, start a podcast.” – Kailyn Lowry and Vee Riviera

•           “Find a rule to break.” – Basic Dept

•           “All there is, is love.” – Anderson Cooper

Find the full list of Webbys winners here. See the best moments from last night’s show here.


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