August 4, 2011

AOL Black Voices transforms into HuffPost Black Voices

AOL Huffington Post Media Group Launches HuffPost BlackVoices with a promise to deliver Bold, Real-Time News, Opinion, Culture and Video Through The Diverse Lenses of Black America

NEW YORK, Aug 04, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) --Leading Edge Social Platform Amplifies Current Voices and Empowers New Ones

The AOL Huffington Post Media Group, a leading source of news, opinion, entertainment, community and digital information, announced today the launch of HuffPost BlackVoices , a site that covers news and cultural trends from a black perspective with a fresh, fearless point-of-view and a spirited, real-time platform for a diversity of opinions. Rebecca Carroll is Managing Editor of the site and oversees its editorial content and day-to-day operations. Sheila Johnson, entrepreneur and co-founder of Black Entertainment Television (BET), is a strategic advisor. Christina Norman has been named Executive Editor of HuffPost BlackVoices. In her role, she will assist in shaping the site's overall editorial vision and strategic implementation of its editorial content and programming. She will also have a role in developing video and TV strategy, and programming, across the AOL Huffington Post Media Group.

"We are living in a split-screen world -- depending on what part of the screen you are looking at, you will have a very different perception of where things stand," said Arianna Huffington, President and Editor-in-Chief of The AOL Huffington Post Media Group. "HuffPost BlackVoices plans to cover both sides of the screen, from crushing unemployment on one side, to the best and brightest black innovators, thinkers and cultural game changers on the other. Our goal is to use dynamic storytelling, curation, investigative reporting and real-time opinion to make issues important to the black community become part of the national conversation."

Said Rebecca Carroll: "We will cover the gamut, fearlessly -- we won't be afraid to ask the hard questions and we'll engage our community in finding answers. But we'll also be having fun as we report on and feature everything that black America is interested in, from music to fashion.

HuffPost BlackVoices covers current events and cultural trends from a black point-of-view from across the globe -- from politics, money and beauty to music, sports and parenting -- and features content ranging from dynamic storytelling to investigative reporting. HuffPost BlackVoices is both a go-to destination and a viral platform for web and mobile users. The site takes the place of AOL BlackVoices.

The site will offer a number of ongoing features meant to explore black America and all its varied interests from all angles. For example, "A Look Black" will be a weekly flashback of selected images from mid-century black America with thought-provoking text comparing then and now; "At the Flea Market With..." will be a video series featuring prominent African-Americans enjoying a leisurely shopping excursion while sharing their takes on everything from policy and trends to pop culture and personalities; and "Side Hustle" will spotlight families and individuals embarking on innovative ways to support themselves during these challenging economic times.

Said Christina Norman: "What's especially exciting for me is that we'll be bringing HuffPost's unique approach to building passionate communities to content that speaks particularly to African-Americans -- whether it's Beyonce's new look or a new book that's making waves."

Said Sheila Johnson: "I'm thrilled to be a part of HuffPost BlackVoices. For me, it's what new media is all about -- leveling the playing field to welcome more voices, letting people speak for themselves, and challenging the conventional wisdom. I look forward to working with Arianna, Rebecca and Christina as we continue to push the boundaries."

HuffPost BlackVoices features well-known African-American experts, leaders and personalities as regular bloggers weighing in in real-time on whatever they are passionate about. Well-known bloggers on HuffPost BlackVoices will include Heidi Durrow, Michael Steele, Al Sharpton, Amy DuBois Barnett, Henry Louis Gates, Trey Ellis, Mellody Hobson, Issa Rae and more. The site is also partnering with the National Association of Black Journalists to expand its range of diverse voices.

With HuffPost BlackVoices, advertisers have a compelling new way of reaching a plugged-in audience of African-American influencers and early adopters. Advertisers have access to high-impact formats including video and dynamic targeting opportunities through AOL Huffington Post Media Group's network of sites. Said Derek J. Murphy, General Manager, Multicultural of AOL Huffington Post Media Group: "Our goal is to build a thriving online black community of scale, a forum for ideas and discussion meant to inform, engage, surprise and entertain. In addition to building a loyal user base, we will offer a variety of creative media and marketing services, and a wide range of opportunities for advertisers, sponsors and business partners."

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