Media 2070 is a 100-page essay examining the history of anti-Black harm in the U.S. media system. From the critical role that trafficking of enslaved Africans played in making our nation’s earliest newspapers financially viable, to decades of targeting of Black press and journalists, the history of harm runs deep. This dynamic is then traced to the present day, when deregulation has resulted in very few Black owners of traditional media – while racist algorithms amplify the voices of white supremacists across online platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

As you explore the timelines, real-life stories and perspectives contained in Media 2070, we urge you to ponder the questions and prompts offered to spark dreaming of a reparative future. Consider hosting a Reflection Circle, and carry these truths forward in your own work toward a just media and world. Download the Essay.

Discussion guide: This guide is for all people who care deeply about the future of media, including journalists, teachers, community organizers, artists, activists and anyone else who wants to host a virtual conversation about anti-Black racism in the U.S. media — and imagine and build a better future. For those looking to host a Reflection Circle, download the official Media 2070 essay-discussion guide.

Essay Co-Conspirators, Schemers and Dreamers

Manolia Charlotin, Press On

Jennifer Choi, Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY

Brandi Collins-Dexter, writer and activist

Malkia Devich-Cyril, Senior Fellow and Founding Director, MediaJustice

Eteng Ettah, MediaJustice

Brandon Forester, MediaJustice

Chelsea Fuller, Blackbird

Cierra Hinton, Scalawag

Christina Reese, Black Farmer Fund

JuJu Holton, North Carolina Black Leadership and Organizing Collective

Janine Jackson, FAIR

Chenjerai Kumanyika, Rutgers University

Bryan Mercer, Movement Alliance Project

Tracie Powell, Borealis Philanthropy

Steven Renderos, MediaJustice

Mazin Sidahmed, Documented

Roxann Stafford, The Knight-Lenfest Local News Transformation Fund

Lea Trusty, Democracy Fund