Blogging While Brown
by Talia Whyte
On June 20 I attended Blogging While Brown (BWB), the only conference for bloggers of color. I went because I go to many technology conferences all the time, but I am usually the only person of color and/or issues that would be of interest to my community are never addressed. So, it was great to meet other black Web content users who technology as an outlet for getting information out and organizing for change. I thought it was also interesting to note the number of women at the conference. According to conference organizer Gina McCauley, approximately 80 percent of the attendees were women.
What was also interesting was the social media revolution happening in the aftermath of Iran’s elections also going on during this conference. Many attendees I spoke to wondered if the events following Hurricane Katrina or even the civil rights movement of the 1960s would have transpired differently if today’s technologies had been around at the time.
Statistics compiled by market research analysis firm eMarketer show that 48.7 percent of African Americans are online today. Mobile technology is a widely used tool in this demographic, and text messaging was used by Katrina survivors after the storm.
Also, the other good thing that I thought came out of this was that there is a diversity of opinion from the black community online, contrary to what the mainstream media belief that all African Americans think alike. There is also an interest by black bloggers to use their outlets to hold President Obama accountable on issues of concern to them.