Social media celebrates Black History Month

·3-min read
TikTok has launched its list of 'Black TikTok Trailblazers.' These leaders and pioneers are using their platform to educate, entertain and advocate for the Black community, both on and off the social network.

In the US, February is Black History Month. This month-long observance dedicated to the history of the Black community is an important annual commemoration that is widely celebrated, including on social media. Less than a year after Black Lives Matter movements were seen in many cities worldwide, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok have all launched ways of promoting Black creators and making the voices of the Black community heard on their platforms.

Starting February 1 in the US, Facebook has a series of initiatives in store to shine the spotlight on content from the Black community. First up, the documentary series "Written By" will share stories of how the Black community's history is still being written in real-time, day by day. For this project, Facebook has joined forces with American director and cinematographer Bradford Young ("Selma").

Meanwhile, Facebook Watch is offering a four-episode miniseries showcasing Black excellence in music. In each episode of "Forward: The Future of Black Music," a music icon will highlight an upcoming talent they think has a promising future in the field. Still in the US, Facebook has launched the "We The Culture" community to help Black creators build meaningful networks across the company's apps, while the "Lift Black Voices" page will look back over Black history and diaspora through different subjects and eras. Facebook has also pledged US$10 million over two years to fund the "Black Gaming Creator Program," helping Black games creators to break through and encourage greater diversity on the platform.

Instagram too will be shining the spotlight on Black voices and creators. With the "#ShareBlackStories" hashtag, the social media site, owned by Facebook, hopes to support and inspire the Black community in the US. Workshops and events will also be organized, offering advice to Black creators on the platform.

YouTube also plans to promote the voices of its Black users this month, notably with a series of playlists. The YouTube website currently features three playlists: "Voices of Black Creativity," showcasing conversations with Black artists and designers talking about their work and offering advice; "Celebrate Black Perspectives," featuring interviews with authors, artists and other Black celebrities, including Barack and Michelle Obama; and "Black History Month," celebrating the month in music.

Over on Twitter, the platform has launched a new hashtag "#LoveToSeeIt" promoting Black creators, and will offer individual meetings with Black mentors through the "Black History Month UX Mentorship Program."

TikTok has launched "#MakeBlackHistory" hashtag and a banner on the "Discover" page in the US, offering a means of proposing content from Black creators and artists. Plus, various TikTok users will be holding live sessions to talk about all kinds of subjects relating to the Black community, from history to beauty trends and fashion. New stickers have also been launched, with "#MakeBlackHistory, "#MelaninMagic," "BlackAndProud" and "#BlackCreatives."