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