In a state of society where amplifying Black voices is vital, BIN: Black Information Network hosted “Our Voices Must Be Heard” to discuss strengthening the Black perspective in today’s media landscape. Held during the recent Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., the event brought together key leaders in the industry to discuss the importance and value of our voices today, but with an eye on preserving that voice in the future. The esteemed panel included Hiram E. Jackson, CEO of Real Times Media, broadcast journalist and executive producer Soledad O’Brien, and radio industry leader and Black Information Network President Tony Coles.
“Today, more than ever, we must continue to unapologetically embrace Black Media and Black Voices. There are so many complex issues confronting our community today. Voter suppression, health care inequities, gun violence, and poverty, just to name a few,” Jackson shares, “We in the Black Press must play a critical role in speaking out against policies and programs that are not in the best interest of the Black community. For us to do this, we must continue to invest in and support our credible Black Media organizations. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to join the “Our Voices Must Be Heard’ event and keep this at the forefront of the industry’s collective conscience.”
The panel, moderated by Emmy award-winning journalist Ed Gordon, highlighted adding, strengthening, and shaping the Black perspective.
“The creation of content has become one of the most important and influential areas of power, and with the advent of social media, control of imagery, media, and messaging is perhaps more important than ever before,” shares Gordon. “African Americans need to make sure we keep, or in some cases, find space to be players in this world. The panel discussed how vital content creation is going to be over the next number of decades and what people of color must do to avoid falling back in this powerful arena. We also stressed why ownership is a must.”