Monday, January 28, 2008

A New Online Mag Targets A Specific Audience.

THE WASHINGTON POST, in conjunction with famed scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr., has launched a new website called The Root dedicated to serving the interests of African-American readers.

The Root will be a 21st-century version of a national black newspaper, Gates told the Washington Post, featuring articles from notable black writers, such as the New Yorker's Malcolm Gladwell.

In recent years, the media has become more and more focused on who their readers are, and molding their product around who will look at it. Is this a good thing or bad thing? It seems to make good business sense, but does the news for Caucasian-Americans differ from that of African-Americans?

Are we deciding what people should know based upon their skin color? Or is this a way of serving a community that has traditionally been ignored by the mainstream media?

And will an online "national black newspaper" erode the circulation of traditional black newspapers like The Baltimore Afro-American, the Philadelphia Tribune or the Amsterdam News?

4 comments:

Chris Banks said...

While I believe that most news is relevant to everyone, I think that this is a way for stories that normally get edged out of mainstream news to still get published within their niche markets.

Victoria H. said...

It's not like white, or any other ethnicity group can't buy that newspaper or look at it's website. I think The Roots, and other black newspapers, provides information for a group that sometimes get's lost in the 'mainstream' of news that may center on the majority of Americans ("white Americans").

David Hall said...

I dont think its an issue. Like in the previous comment there might just be information in the paper that didnt get an opportunity to make mainstream nnews. Furthermore this isnt any differant from any black magazine or black online paper.

Geo said...

If it isn't any different, why should it exist?

- George (the existential teacher)