Video Duration 08 minutes 53 seconds
From: The Listening Post

‘black’ to ‘Black’: Rewriting the race style guide

Campaigners have long called for US news outlets to rethink their race reporting and increase diversity in the newsroom.

The police killing of George Floyd – a Black man – in Minnesota did more than dominate the news agenda. It filled streets with protests against racism and has started to change things. All kinds of institutions have been affected.

On this front, the American media have a vast range of issues to address, from the lack of diversity in newsrooms to the problems with how Black people are reported on.

What has changed so far? A single letter – the letter “B” – from lowercase to uppercase.

The change sounds small yet it has been a long-standing demand for Black journalists and activists in the United States.

Meenakshi Ravi asks scholars and journalists in the US what the debate is about and what led to this change today.


Matthew Hughey – associate professor of sociology, University of Connecticut

Lori Tharps – associate professor of journalism, Temple University

Erica Britt – sociolinguist and discourse analyst

Erin Logan – reporter, LA Times