Diversity is a hot topic for news organizations. The consensus is that media must do a better job at hiring staff that better reflects America.
The lack of diversity in mainstream newsrooms has raised concerns about coverage. With a small percentage of journalists of color in the newsroom, can a media organization present an accurate perspective, or negate negative stereotypes?
MediaShift recently published an article listing four steps that news organizations can take to start collaborating with ethnic media — a relationship that could be mutually beneficial.
Ethnic media don’t always have the resources to cover their communities like major outlets do, reports MediaShift. And, major news organizations aren’t always able to report from the perspective of ethnic media.
With Black History Month well underway, here are some of our favorite sites that do a great job covering black people, and the culture and issues that impact their community.
It is no secret BET is probably the most notable of the black sites and media organizations. The organization is a mogul in black entertainment with its original programming and events. Providing the latest news also is one of its key features. So far in 2017, the network has premiered original content that tackles important issues in the black community and educates its audience on significant contributions to black culture — such as the relevance of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and biopics about revolutionaries and musical heartthrobs.
The Undefeated is like the virtual barber shop or beauty salon that you may find yourself sitting in on any given day, discussing the latest in sports, culture, and race. It shows how a debate about LeBron James being the GOAT (greatest of all time) in the NBA can easily flow into a conversation about the most jaw-dropping black achievers in sports, politics, or literature. This is what makes The Undefeated so interesting and relatable — it’s a sports site that transforms regular sports talk into meaningful real-life talk that anyone — and especially black people — will find intriguing.
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For a range of topics — like Black History Month, cultural appropriation, and racial inquality — Huffington Post’s Black Voices is an obvious resource. This site is known to provide the black perspective on current events that’s not always available from other publishers. While the site’s entertainment and lifestyle posts make for great reads, the real appeal is in its coverage of hot-button issues. The site continues to be a major online stage that informs readers about news prevalent in the black community and why black voices matter.
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If you’re looking for audio and digital resources, NPR’s podcast Code Switch shares contextual content on its site. What’s unique about Code Switch is its unflinchingly honest discussion about hard-to-pin-down stories on race and culture. The team of journalists that manage the podcast and site say they are fascinated by the overlapping themes of race, ethnicity and culture, how it affects communities, and how it’s all shifting. We love the real talk by this group.
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The next best thing to Essence Magazine — the iconic publication for women of color that first hit stands in 1970 — is its site Essence.com. It focuses on anything and everything related to black women. You’ll see the latest news headlines, a deep look at politics and policy, how-to posts on fashion and beauty, a fresh perspective on black women in relationships, and so much more. Essence is sure to always be a resource for uplifting content about and for black women.
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6. The Root
The Root, part of the Gizmodo media group, never fails to present a range of perspectives. The site reports on the major stories of the day and also gives you a glimpse at lesser-known stories you’d love to hear more about. While The Root writers never miss an opportunity to inform readers about the latest in politics and culture, the sense of humor they use to convey the news helps set this site apart. The history section on The Root is perhaps the most unique, offering resources for black people to learn about their lineage and how they came to be.
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7. The Grio
Fans of breaking news coverage will find The Grio a top choice. The site features major headlines that you will see on other mainstream sites. But, you’ll find it typically frames these stories with a black perspective not often found in traditional publications. The Grio serves as a resource that keeps readers informed about what’s going on nationally and in local communities through specialty videos, articles, and blogs. Whether the content pertains to politics, business, or health, The Grio always will uncover the pieces most relevant to its primarily black audience.
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8. Rolling Out
Rolling Out is an entertainment and news source that aims to share news that’s a bit less serious. While the site does post hard-news stories on subjects ranging from politics to real estate, it does not shy away from reality TV news, gossip, and other soft-news pieces. Rolling Out is definitely a go-to resource for audiences looking to stay informed, while also getting their fix for the latest insider entertainment news.
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9. For Harriet
For Harriet probably is the lesser known of the sites here. The blog features personal perspectives on the latest news and the effects it has on black women’s past, present, and future. With so few publishers providing content about the struggles, successes, and sentiments of solely black women, this is definitely a site to watch. For Harriet’s mission statement says it aspires to educate, inspire, and entertain — and that is exactly what it does.
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NewsOne is a more traditional site that provides the latest in current events as they relate to black people. Once of its best features is its Good News section, which provides a number of anecdotes of black people doing great things. Where there is one story that reiterates the plight of black lives in America, this site is sure to match it with another that celebrates black excellence.
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Tabresha B. Langham is a Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She also is a social media junkie, foodie, music fiend and Auburn University Alumn (War Eagle!). Tune into her insights as a social curator at @PRNmedia, or follow @TabreshaL.