February is Black History Month, and this week, all of the major social platforms have announced new programs and initiatives to celebrate Black stories, and highlight the contributions of people of color, as part of the event.
Here’s a look at what each platform has announced, and how you can take part in the various events and happenings.
Facebook, which has boosted its support of Black creators and the community over the past year, is launching a series of educational videos and programs designed to highlight Black creators and their contributions to culture, in various ways.
First off is a new video series called “Written By,” which will feature stories designed to “promote conversations about how Black history continues to be written in real-time”.
Facebook’s also launching a new, four-part series on Facebook Watch to showcase Black contributions in music.
“Each episode of “Forward: The Future of Black Music” will feature a music icon shining the light on a newcomer they believe to be the future. Influenced by the classic TV series “Iconoclasts,” viewers will be a fly-on-the-wall for a musical experience with a legend and their successor. The series will also be viewable on Messenger’s Watch Together.”
It’s also launching a new We The Culture creative community to showcase Black creators, while its Lift Black Voices hub will feature honor and celebrate “the past, present and future of Black communities” throughout the month.
Facebook has also allocated $10 million over two years to fund a new Black Gaming Creator Program to help Black gaming creators develop their presence.
Facebook will also look to showcase Black creators via custom logo designs throughout the month.
Instagram is promoting Black voices and their contributions via the #ShareBlackStories hashtag, which it’s been looking to boost to assist the Black community, which has been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
Instagram’s also adding new creative tools in the Instagram Camera to enable users to take part in the event, while it’s also hosting workshops and other events for Black creators.
YouTube says that it has “a host of exciting activities planned” for Black History Month, which will begin with a new showcase of artwork from Black guest artists that will be featured on the YouTube homepage, “along with curated content from Black Creators and talent across our Spotlight and TV surfaces – including new YouTube Originals and Kids content.”
TikTok, meanwhile, has launched a new “Black TikTok Trailblazers” list.
“These individuals were recognized and nominated by the North America #BlackTikTok community for being leaders and pioneers on and off TikTok. Our Trailblazers are using their platform to educate, entertain, and advocate for the Black community.”
TikTok is also adding a new #MakeBlackHistory banner on the Discover page, in order to connect users to a schedule of TikTok LIVE programming featuring Black creators and artists, while its also rolling out new creative effects and stickers linked into the event.
Twitter has added a new hashflag for the event attached to the #LoveToSeIt hashtag, which will showcase Black creators.
Twitter’s also providing opportunities for Black designers and content strategists to hold 1:1 meetings with Black mentors over the next month.
Given the events of the past 12 months, Black History Month takes on increased significance in 2021, and will provide a platform to highlight the significant contribution of Black communities in modern culture and development. These features and tools will enable increased promotion and awareness around the event, elevating related discussion for all social media users.