In short, the Rock Hall is on a Journey, steering this boat toward the Styx.
Another example of the Rock Hall's pivot toward pop-rock's often syrupy center was Rock Hall CEO Joel Peresman's 2015 interview where he expressed surprise that Journey and Bon Jovi weren't inducted yet. Steve Perry and company's current welcome into the Hall feels less like prescience on Peresman's part than the Rock Hall's apparent institutional mission to enshrine acts that will drive viewership of the HBO induction ceremony broadcast, as well as visitors to the museum.
"Who cares?" many will say. Why examine or care so much about all this? That's more than fair—ultimately, this isn't life or death stuff. No one will die. (They will be inducted after they do, however.) The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony may just be another music awards show to the casual observer, but it's still one of the most intensively discussed music events of the year. It's partly notable because it legitimizes musical taste, and ascribes the elite "Rock and Roll Hall of Famer" distinction (which, sadly, has been slapped onto far too many popular musicians' obituaries this year). Still, the debate over who is qualified to enter those hallowed halls rages on, and will continue to in the coming years.
Speaking of the future, and now that Journey has been voted into the Hall, it's time to consider what other acts they are blazing the trail for in Cleveland. Groan or exult if you must, but there are many bands that fit the specific Journey AOR/arena rock template that could potentially start seeing nominations. Here are just a few: