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African American

African American Media (Updated January 12, 2009 to reflect corrections and updates to African American television profits)

By the Project for Excellence in Journalism

Overview

Heading into 2009, the makeup of African American media seemed to be shifting. Newspaper circulation continued to fall in 2008, and one major black daily converted to weekly. But the reach of black-oriented cable television networks grew. As the print sector shrank, the industry also clearly moved, if belatedly, to expand online.

Trust in Black Media

One advantage of black-owned media is the greater trust it enjoys among many African Americans.

Survey data released by Radio One, a major owner of black-oriented media, and Yankelovich Research showed African Americans are twice as likely to trust black-owned or black-focused media as they are to trust the mainstream media.1

Moreover, African Americans perceive the black media as being different from mainstream outlets, the Radio One survey found.

Among all black households, 81% watch black-focused television channels and one in five named black channels in their top five most watched.2

Print

Of all the black media, newspapers tell perhaps the most challenging story.

Since 2000, the Black Press of America, another name for the National Newspaper Publishers Association, has experienced sharp membership declines, down to 189 weekly newspapers in 2008 from 300 in 2000, John Smith, the chairman of the organization, told Advertising Age in August.3

The declines don’t end there. Among those 189 papers, average weekly circulation continued to fall as well. In April of 2008 the average was 250,000 half of what it was in 2000, Smith said.4

The circulation losses occurred at some venerable newspapers, including many stalwarts of the civil rights movement, although in some cases their declines were in line with trends across the mainstream media.

The Philadelphia Tribune, the Afro-American (with editions in Washington and Baltimore) and the New York Amsterdam News all experienced declines in circulation in 2008, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations.

The Afro-American, which calls itself the oldest family-owned black paper in the country, was the hardest hit in the six-month period ending September 30, 2008. Its Washington and Baltimore editions combined suffered a 15% drop in paid circulation, falling to an average of 15,677 for its weekly editions, from 18,524 in 2007, according to publisher’s statements submitted to the audit bureau in September of 2007 and 2008.5

The weekly Amsterdam News fell about 11% to an average circulation of 11,958 for each edition in 2008, from 13,380 in 2007 for the six-month period ending in September. 6

The three-times-a-week Philadelphia Tribune was able to increase its Sunday circulation to an average of 10,933, according to its September 2008 publisher’s statements, up 8% from 10,122 in the same period a year earlier.  But its Tuesday editions were down 3% and Fridays down 10%. Over all for the period, the paper’s average weekly circulation was down about 2%.7

PEJ, for all media genres, uses the most recent data available for its analysis. For the black press this was the September publisher’s statements. As was the case for most news industries in 2008, audience figures from earlier in the year, before the effects of the economic downturn were fully felt, were more positive.  The March publisher’s statements for these newspapers show much lesser declines than during the same six-month period a year before.  The combined editions of the Afro-American dropped 4%, the Philadelphia Tribune 11% and the Amsterdam News 5%. These lesser declines, according to John J. Oliver Jr., publisher of the Baltimore and Washington Afro-American, helped mitigate the bigger circulation losses later in the year.8

Some in the industry sense that the black press may have had a spike in readership after Barack Obama’s election in November 2008. Any changes will be reflected in the March publisher’s statements and audit reports due to be released in mid-2009.

Circulation of Top African American Newspapers
2006-2008
Design Your Own Chart

Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations Publisher’s Statements for the six-month period ending September 30
*The Philadelphia Tribune circulates on Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays. The Afro-American has editions in Baltimore and Washington. This chart combines the three days of the Philadelphia Tribune and both editions of the Afro-American

One of the few remaining African American dailies, the Chicago Defender, converted to a weekly schedule in February.9

For comparison, the circulation of mainstream daily newspapers fell 4.6% for the first nine months of the year.10

Elinor Tatum, editor in chief and publisher of the New York Amsterdam News, said her paper’s circulation declines related to both the overall decline in the print media and the aging audience of the African American readers who make up the bulk of the paper’s reader base.11

And some of this shift, said Smith, was clearly attributable, as it is in newspapers generally, to the rise of the Internet.12

And as is true for print generally, some of this online readership is going to the websites of the same papers. John J. Oliver Jr. of the Afro-American, whose paper has taken big steps into the online arena in the past year, says where the paper is losing circulation in print, it is making inroads online.13

Many of the papers have advanced their online operations, trying to take advantage of Web editions. A group of black newspapers, including the Afro-American, New York Amsterdam News, Philadelphia Tribune, Atlanta Voice, St. Louis American, Houston Defender, Dallas Weekly, Indianapolis Recorder and the Chicago Citizen Newspaper Group formed the African American News & Information Consortium, which in the past year, according to Oliver, discussed adopting better editorial standards, which now includes committing to a quality online publication. 14

A trend that began to emerge throughout 2008 across many sectors of ethnic media was some smaller and mid-sized newspapers forgoing print entirely and moving online. In many cases the change was tied to economic necessity. The San Francisco Bay View is one such example. With a circulation of 20,000, the paper published its last print edition on July 2, 2008, with an announcement that it would be moving fully to the Web.

The move was intended to cut costs and allow operations to continue. But, according to its editor , Mary Ratcliff, this still was not enough to counter the sour economy.  The foreclosure crisis, Ratcliff told New America Media, had all but leveled its operation, leaving even the online outlet in question.15

Magazines

African American magazines generally fared better in 2008 than did newspapers. One reason may have been the multiple issues devoted to the historic election of the nation’s first black president.

Three of the four biggest magazines — Ebony, Jet and Black Enterprise — enjoyed monthly circulation gains.

Ebony’s circulation increased to 1,451,427 from 1,403,483 in 2007, an increase of 3%. Jet had an increase to 929,599 from 909,579 the previous year, up 2%.  And Black Enterprise, a business magazine, had an increase of 2%,  to 530,655 copies from 522,273 in 2007.16

The exception was Essence, which dropped 4% to 1,051,130 copies from 1,089,495 the year before.17

Average Monthly Circulation of Top African American Magazines
2006-2008
Design Your Own Chart

Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations Publisher’s Statements for the six-month period ending June 30

One notable event in the year was the launch of RiseUp, the first weekly national magazine insert on race issues put in some traditional newspapers. It was aimed at readers of all races, but within a few months of its introduction on June 22, it announced a temporary suspension of printing to “gauge reader response and prepare to double its circulation.”18

The magazine said it hoped to come back strong in the fall, nearly doubling its circulation from its initial circulation of 4.3 million to 8 million.19 But as of January 2009, the phones were not being answered and the website had not been updated since the summer.

Television

Audience

All three black cable networks extended their reach – that is, became available in more households – in 2008, especially TV One and the Africa Channel, according to data from SNL Kagan, a leading market research firm, shows that.

The biggest, BET, was available in 90.5 million households in 2008, an increase of 3% from 87.7 million the year before, according to SNL Kagan.20

TV One was available in 57.8 million households, up 37% from 42.3 million in 2007.

The Africa Channel was available in 7.7 million households, up more than two-fold from 2.8 million in 2007.The gains were largely due to new contracts in New York and Los Angeles. The channel, which provides English-language programming from Africa, including soaps, lifestyle, travel, sports, documentaries, reality shows, music and news, made its debut in Los Angeles on June 26 and in New York on September 18.21

Such gains in households that could potentially watch the channel are important for cable networks. Convincing a cable system to carry a network extends its potential viewership and normally involves multiyear contracts.

Viewership numbers, on the other hand, provide information on how many households actually watched the channel. BET and TV One both increased viewership as well in 2008.

For the month of September, figures provided by the channels show that more households watched both BET and TV One in 2008 than in September of the previous year. BET increased the number of households it reached to 87 million, up from 85 million the same month last year, a 2% increase.22

BET Viewership
2004-2008
Design Your Own Chart

Source: BET Press Releases, based on Nielsen Media Research data, September ratings for each year

Viewership for TV One was up in September 2008 to 45.3 million from 40.6 million the same month the previous year, an 11.5% increase.23

TV One Viewership
2005-2008
Design Your Own Chart

Source: TV OnePress Releases, based on Nielsen Media Research data, September ratings for each year

The Economics of African American TV

Along with added reach, early-year projections called for revenue growth at the nation’s major black cable channels, although the recession could have affected the final numbers.

Cable channels withstood the recession better than other sectors of media, said Derek Baine, an analyst for SNL Kagan.

BET was the only profitable black-focused network, though it suffered in 2008.

From 2007 to 2008, BET’s pretax profits decreased to $218.5 million in 2008 from $252.7 million in 2007, a 13% decrease. Net ad revenues, which often make up a large piece of total revenues, also decreased. They dropped to $272.5 million in 2008 from $308.3 million in 2007, an 11.6% decrease.

TV One reduced its losses, but the channel remained in the red. In 2008, TV One was estimated to lose $11.1 million, less than the $20.1 million lost in 2007. Part of the improvement in 2008 was due to an increase in net ad revenues, which were up to $42 million from $37 million in 2007, up 13.5%.

The Africa Channel, which was begun in 2005, also remained in the red, though it too reduced its losses in 2008. The channel lost $14.5 million, which is less than the $17.1 it lost in 2007. Net ad revenues increased in 2008, up to $2 million in 2008 from $500,000 in 2007, a four-fold increase.

Projections for 2009 showed expected mixed performances by the three networks in light of the recession. BET was forecast to experience a slight decline in pretax profits. TV One and the Africa Channel were expected to continue to cut their losses, just not by as much as previously projected.

For 2009, SNL Kagan projected that BET’s pretax profit would decrease by 11.6%, falling to $193.2 million from $218.5 million in 2008.

TV One was expected to make a profit for the first time ever, with a cash flow of $1.3 million, up from losing $11.1 million in 2008. It was estimated the Africa Channel would remain in the red, losing $11.7 million, after losing $14.5 million in 2008.

TV Ownership

Black ownership of television still has some considerable distance to go.

Advertising Age reported in April that out of 1,379 commercial TV stations, only eight stations are owned by African Americans.24 And the biggest, BET, has not been owned by a black since 2000 when the station was sold to Viacom.

One study, by Free Press, a non-profit that promotes diversity in media ownership, found that African Americans comprised 13% of the U.S. population but only owned 1.3% of its TV stations in 2006. Furthermore, the study found that there had been no improvement in the level of minority ownership in television since 1998.25

The issue has prompted efforts to encourage the sale of stations to minorities. The Federal Communications Commission convened a hearing in August 2008, at which experts from the industry testified that reinstating the Minority Tax Credit Policy and repealing certain FCC rules and regulations would boost the number of minority owners.26 At the same hearing, the Federal Communications Commission came under fire when it approved the merger of XM Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio. Some “saw the approval as giving big media an advantage to form monopolies and shut out small minority owned operations,” according to Black Enterprise Magazine.27

Not waiting for a sale, three prominent African Americans announced plans for three new cable channels.

Former Congressman J.C. Watts announced plans for The Black Television News Channel, Grammy-award-winning musician Percy Miller (formerly known as the rapper Master P) announced the launch of Better Black Television, and Robert Johnson, the founder of BET, announced plans for Urban Television.

In the announcements, the Watts and Miller channels said that they were planning to start in 2009. There is, however, some uncertainty about those plans since little has been heard about the project since July 2008. Urban Television’s launch schedule was less clear, but as of January 2009, the station had yet to hire any staff and the company was awaiting FCC approval.28

Assuming plans move forward, the Watts channel is to feature programming with a greater focus on news than the entertainment-oriented BET and TV One.

Watts told the newspaper/website Politico in July that his channel would “provide about 16 hours of original news coverage, nonpartisan commentary, information and educational programs” each day to the African American community that Watts says is underserved by cable and satellite television.29 The channel already has major contracts with Comcast and DishNet.30

Black Television News Channel had not disclosed ownership information for the channel as of the end of 2008, but more information was expected to be made available during the second quarter of 2009, according to Darren Carrington, the channel’s chief financial officer.

Better Black Television said it expected to have a heavier entertainment focus, but be “family friendly” and offer lifestyle and politics programming.
Miller, who was once listed among the highest-paid entertainers by Forbes Magazine, is the chairman of Better Black Television. The network’s advisory board includes actors Denzel Washington and Will Smith.

Better Black Television said it would have “a wide arrangement from health and fitness, animation, financial planning, reality TV, sitcoms, dramas, movies, responsible hip-hop music and videos, politics, sports and entertainment news, educational children’s shows as well as teen and family programming.”31

The plan for Urban Television was less specific. But, according to officials of the new network, it would be co-owned by Robert Johnson and Ion Media Networks and share time on stations owned by Ion. The network planned to “cater to a multicultural audience interested in health, lifestyle education and other issues,” and possibly offer some news content. 32

In December, the channel’s FCC application drew opposition from the National Cable & Telecommunications Association. The group filed documents with the FCC, suggesting that the share-time agreement with Ion should be treated as a separate license by the FCC.33

Radio

The other major element of the African American media in America was radio.

From 2007 to 2008, the number of black-owned radio stations increased by 5 to 245, according to the National Association of Black-Owned Broadcasters.34

But despite those gains, there were also signs of difficulty.

Perhaps most notably, the medium’s leader experienced financial distress and there were accusations that a new way of measuring radio audiences may undercount African Americans and Hispanics.

Radio One is the largest black-owned radio broadcasting company that targets African American and urban listeners. The company operated 53 radio stations in 16 urban markets at the end of the year. During the first three quarters of the year, the company reported a net loss of $296.6 million.35 That was exponentially worse than the loss of $3.4 million reported for the same period in 2007. Of the 2008 loss, $266 million came in the third quarter, when the company wrote down the value of its FCC licenses. Radio one had a net income of $4.7 million the same quarter of 2007.

In response, Radio One moved to diversify its operations by selling stations and buying digital businesses.

It sold stations in Miami and Los Angeles and acquired a Washington, D.C., radio station, WPRS-FM, and the social networking firm Community Connect, which includes BlackPlanet.com, AsianAve.com and MiGente.com, all online ethnic social networking properties.

The moves were an effort by Radio One to “increase radio market share, cut costs and diversify into TV and online revenues,” CEO Alfred Liggins told the Washington  Business Journal. “Clearly all advertising based companies, including radio, are experiencing extremely challenging times given the slowdown in consumer spending, and I expect this to continue through all of 2009,” he said.36

Sheridan Broadcasting and American Urban Radio Networks are two other major black-owned radio companies. Sheridan Broadcasting currently owns and operates five radio stations.  American Urban Radio Networks is a division of Sheridan and was founded as a partnership between then competing National Black Network and Sheridan Broadcasting Corporation in 1991.37 The company broadcasts to more than 300 stations and reaches an estimated 20 million listeners each week, according to the company’s website.38 The company also has bureaus in Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles and Washington.

The audience for black radio programming is significant.

Five black talk radio hosts again made Talkers Magazine’s top 100 list for 2008: Joe Madison, Bev Smith, Larry Elder, Lincoln Ware and Larry Young.

Arbitron, the radio ratings agency, reported that in 2007, the latest year for which there were data, blacks made up roughly 3.9% of the listeners to stations categorized as news/talk/information each week.  This was up slightly from 3.6% in 2006.39 Arbitron does not break out black-focused radio stations from general market stations.
From 2006 to 2007, time spent by African Americans listening to news/talk/information radio increased by 15 minutes per week to an average of eight hours and fifteen minutes listening per week from an average of eight hours the previous year.40

Arbitron had a bumpy year in its relations with the ethnic press. Its new portable  people meter ratings system came under fire for under-representing young African Americans and Hispanics, non-English speakers and cell phone-only houses.

The issue boiled over in October, when Arbitron released the first ratings generated by the new devices. New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo responded with a lawsuit.41

The accuracy of the ratings system has serious implications for African American radio stations, because if audiences of urban stations are underrepresented, it will make it difficult to attract advertisers.

Digital

In general, black-oriented media have struggled to find a future online.

One challenge has been lower Internet usage among blacks. According to the latest Pew Internet & American Life Project, 64% of African Americans use the Internet, compared to 77% of whites and 58% of  Hispanics.42

But that is beginning to change. Use among blacks is increasing and at equal or faster rates than among whites or Hispanics. Between the end of 2000 and 2008, African American Internet usage has increased by 22 percentage points, from 42% in 2000 to 64% in 2008. This compares with a 10-point increase for Hispanics from 48% in 2000 to 58% in 2008 and a 22-point increase for whites from 55% in 2000 to 77% in 2008.43

With that in mind, some African American news outlets boosted their online investment in 2008.  And unprecedented reader demand to have the news almost as it happened fueled by Barack Obama’s candidacy helped push some major black newspapers online in 2008.

In broadcast, Radio One, the largest radio broadcasting company targeted at African American and urban listeners, scaled back its broadcast operations so it could focus on its online project, InterativeOne, that began in 2007.  At the close of 2008, the online project included the websites HelloBeautiful.com, TheUrbanDaily.com, BlackPlanet.com, Giantmag.com, MiGente.com and NewsOne.com.

NewsOne.com is an online news website targeted at African Americans. It combines news aggregated from traditional news sources with original content from contributors on issues and current events relevant to the African American community.

Together, the websites make a comprehensive web portal the company hoped would serve “the African American community through news, information entertainment and social networking.”44

According to RadioOne, the combination of the sites makes InteractiveOne the “largest media entity for African Americans reaching more than 6 million unique visitors monthly.”45

One other notable success came as a spinoff from a more mainstream news outlet.  TheRoot.com. was launched by the Washington Post in January 2008 and, as of January 2009 attracted an average of 228,000 people per month. The site drew a six-month high of 1.3 million people per month in August, according to estimates by the Web analytics service Quantcast.46 TheRoot.com declined to provide more specific traffic numbers.

For comparison, it was estimated the Washington Post’s website attracted on average 9.5 million people per month and had a six-month high of about 10 million people per month in September.

The site’s editor in chief and co-founder is Henry Louis Gates, Jr., the director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University. Among its contributors during its first year were the playwright Keith Josef Adkins, Harvard W.E.B DuBois Professor Lawrence Bobo, Princeton Professor Melissa Harris-Lacewell and Professor Marc Lamont Hill of Temple University.

According to the site, “The Root aims to be an unprecedented departure from traditional American journalism, raising the profile of black voices in mainstream media and engaging anyone interested in black culture around the world.”

Its news page aggregates stories from a variety of media. Two weeks before the election, for example, it featured links to a Washington Post article on Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama’s fundraising, a Politico article on the lack of support for Republican rival John McCain, and a New York Times story on an American airstrike against Taliban targets in Pakistan.

Its views section included commentary such as a retrospective on the release 40 years earlier of the album “Electric Ladyland” by black rocker Jimi Hendrix and a piece on why Jews should vote for Obama.

A lengthy blogroll featured links to the black-oriented gossip site Bossip, one devoted to a discourse on race called Racialicious, and another that explores black contributions to classical music called AfriClassical.

In April 2008, Advertising Age reported that many black newspapers had struggled with digital editions, and after launching a national online portal for black newspapers in 2001, the National Newspaper Publishers Association, the black press organization, currently averages only about 10,000 hits per week.47 As the presidential campaign heated up, though, and Barack Obama became the Democratic nominee, many in the black press energized their online efforts.

The nine papers that make up the African American News & Information Consortium, for example, boosted their websites and e-publications in 2008. In addition, one of the papers, the Afro-American, dedicated increased resources to covering Obama’s candidacy and getting news out to readers  in almost real time.

According to the Afro’s publisher, John J. Oliver Jr., during the early primary season the paper sent reporters to the Democratic Convention in Denver who posted stories online from the floor and continued through the campaign. 48

Oliver said that moving online “is a risk all newspapers need to take” and that the aggressive online push that the paper made helped to attract younger readers. “Having just a website isn’t enough,” he said. “You need e-mail blasts, mobile alerts, anything that will get the news out before it hits the street.”49

Elinor Tatum of the Amsterdam News also underscored the importance of the online move, calling it “simply a matter of what needs to be done.”50

In perhaps the boldest move in this market, the 20,000-circulation San Francisco Bay View newspaper decided in 2008 to abandon print altogether.

The headline on its final issue announced its strategy: “The Bay View’s not dead; we’ll see you on the web!”51 Bay View publisher Willie Ratcliff told New America Media that the paper would save 82% of its costs with the move. It has managed to maintain an online presence but later in the year reported more financial trouble.

One area that gained promise in 2007 was the African American blogosphere, the AfroSpear, also known as the Afrosphere. Its role in drawing attention to the case of the Jena Six, the black students arrested after a school fight in Louisiana in which a white students was beaten, established it among blacks as a popular way to discuss African American news.

In 2008, Barack Obama’s historic candidacy provided more fodder for the Afrosphere. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that, according to Electronic Village, a blog run by Wayne Hicks, a member of the 140-member AfroSpear collective, the number of black blogs has increased from 75 in September of 2007 to 1,239 in July of 2008. ColorofChange.org, a San Francisco-based blog that seeks to be a “black MoveOn.org,” has grown from 100,000 members to 417,000 in the past year, the paper reported.52

But most of these news-oriented sites remain far less popular than mainstream news sites such as AOL.com, CNN.com, and MSNBC.com.

Footnotes

1.Radio One & Yankelovich, “Black America Today.” http://www.blackamericastudy.com/summary/AA-Presentation-Public-Deck-3.pdf

2. Radio One & Yankelovich, “Black America Today.” http://www.blackamericastudy.com/summary/AA-Presentation-Public-Deck-3.pdf

3.Mya Frazier, “The Catch-22 of Buying Black Media,” Advertising Age. April 7, 2008. http://adage.com/mediaworks/article?article_id=126174

4. Mya Frazier, “The Catch-22 of Buying Black Media,” Advertising Age. April 7, 2008. http://adage.com/mediaworks/article?article_id=126174

The Black Press of America also reported sharp membership declines.

5. Audit Bureau of Circulations publisher’s statement for the period ending September 30

6. Audit Bureau of Circulations publisher’s statement for the period ending September 30

7. Audit Bureau of Circulations publisher’s statement for the period ending September 30

8. Audit Bureau of Circulations publisher’s statement for the period ending September 30

9. Mya Frazier, “The Catch-22 of Buying Black Media,” Advertising Age, April 7, 2008. http://adage.com/mediaworks/article?article_id=126174

10. David T. Clark, “Weak Circulation Trends Across Industry,” Deutsche Bank Global Markets Research, Oct. 27, 2008

11. Phone Interview with Elinor Tatum, October 2008

12. Mya Frazier, “The Catch-22 of Buying Black Media,” Advertising Age, April 7, 2008 http://adage.com/mediaworks/article?article_id=126174

13. Phone Interview with John J. Oliver Jr., publisher, Baltimore and Washington Afro-American, October 2008

14. Phone Interview with John J. Oliver Jr., publisher, Baltimore and Washington Afro-American, October 2008

15. Ngoc Nguyen, “Ethnic Print Media Vulnerable During Bad Economy,” New America Media, October 2, 2008.  http://news.newamericamedia.org/news/view_article.html?article_id=d9cd25e6adfaf3608103b5f842a616f3

*New America Media is a California-based association of ethnic news organizations founded by the nonprofit Pacific News Service in 1996. According to its website,  “NAM is dedicated to bringing the voices of the marginalized -ethnic minorities, immigrants, young people, elderly — into the national discourse.”

16. Audit Bureau of Circulations publishers’ statements for the period ending June 30

17. Audit Bureau of Circulations Publisher’s Statement for the period ending June 30. Although Essence is a black-focused magazine, it is no longer black-owned. In 2000, Time Warner purchased 49% of Essence Communications and in 2005  bought the remaining 51% of the company.

18. “Rise Up Magazine Stops Publishing to Retool for Expansion,” Kansas City Business Journal, August 19, 2008. http://www.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2008/08/18/daily18.html

19. “Rise Up Magazine Stops Publishing to Retool for Expansion,” Kansas City Business Journal, August 19, 2008. http://www.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2008/08/18/daily18.html

20. SNL Kagan, Economics of Basic Cable, 2008 Edition

21. Africa Channel. Press Release: The Africa Channel and Time Warner Cable’s New York. September 9, 2008. http://www.theafricachannel.com/pressroom.php?news=11

22. BET Press Releases, September 2007 and 2008

23. TV One Press Releases, September 2007 and 2008

24. Mya Frazier, “The Catch -22 of Buying Black Media.”. Advertising Age., April 7, 2008

25. Derek Turner and& Mark Cooper, “Left Out of the Picture: Minority & Female TV Station Ownership in the United States,” Free Press, October 2006

26. Marcia A. Wade, “FCC Hearing Broaches Media Ownership for Minorities, Black Enterprise magazine, August 6, 2008. http://www.blackenterprise.com/diversity/diversity-news/2008/08/06/fcc-hearing-broaches-media-ownership-for-minorities/

27. Marcia A. Wade, “FCC Hearing Broaches Media Ownership for Minorities, Black Enterprise magazine, August 6, 2008. http://www.blackenterprise.com/diversity/diversity-news/2008/08/06/fcc-hearing-broaches-media-ownership-for-minorities/

28. Richard Prince, “Bob Johnson Planning New TV Network,” Maynard Institute’s Journal-Isms, November 25, 2008. http://www.mije.org/richardprince/bob-johnson-planning-new-tv-network

29. Helena Andrews. “Watts Launches African-American Channel,” Politico, July 17, 2008.  http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0708/11806.html

30. Helena Andrews. “Watts Launches African-American Channel,” Politico, July 17, 2008.  http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0708/11806.html

31. Marketwatch Online, “Better Black Television Set to Launch Worldwide in 2009,” August 15, 2008. http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/better-black-television-bbtv-set/story.aspx?guid={84DACE55-1089-4DB5-8992-4223A5DF65EE}&dist=hppr

32. Richard Prince, “Bob Johnson Planning New TV Network,” Maynard Institute’s Journal-Isms, November 25, 2008. http://www.mije.org/richardprince/bob-johnson-planning-new-tv-network

33. John Eggerton,NCTA Opposes Urban TV Proposal,” Broadcasting & Cable, December 30, 2008. http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/161363-NCTA_Opposes_Urban_TV_Proposal.php

34. Phone interview, October 2008.

35. Radio One financial statements, net (loss) income for the nine months ended Sept 30, 2008. http://yahoo.brand.edgar-online.com/displayfilinginfo.aspx?FilingID=6239689-13134-206918&type=sect&dcn=0001041657-08-000046

36. Tierney Plumb, “Profits Plummet at Radio One,” Washington Business Journal, November 6, 2008.  http://denver.bizjournals.com/washington/stories/2008/11/03/daily89.html

37. American Urban Radio Networks Online, company profile.http://www.aurn.com/company/leadership.asp

38. American Urban Radio Networks online, company overview. http://www.aurn.com/company/

39. Arbitron, Black Radio Today, 2008 Edition

40. Arbitron, Black Radio Today, 2008 Edition

41. Brian Stelter, “Cuomo to Sue Radio Ratings Company, Claiming Minorities Are Underrepresented,” New York Times, October 6, 2008. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/07/nyregion/07arbitron.html

42. Pew Internet & American Life Project. Who’s Online, Demographics of Internet Users. http://www.pewinternet.org/trends/User_Demo_Jan_2009.htm

43. Pew Internet & American Life Project. Demographics of Internet Users Spreadsheet March 2000-May 2008.

44. Radio One Online, “Our Properties.”  http://www.radio-one.com/properties/fact_sheet.asp?ID=9

45. Press Release, “Radio One’s Interactive Unit Creates the Largest Online African American Community,” August 7, 2008. http://www.redorbit.com/news/technology/1514362/radio_ones_interactive_unit_creates_the_largest_online_africanamerican_community/index.html

46. Quantcast Web Analytics Online, theroot.com. http://www.quantcast.com/theroot.com/traffic

47. Mya Frazier, “The Catch-22 of Buying Black Media,” Advertising Age, April 7, 2008

48. Phone interview with John J. Oliver Jr., publisher, Baltimore and Washington Afro-American, December 2008

49. Phone interview with John J. Oliver Jr. , publisher, Baltimore and Washington Afro-American, December 2008

50. Phone interview with Elinor Tatum, editor in chief and publisher, New York Amsterdam News, October 2008

51. JR Valrey, “San Francisco Black Paper Dumps Print Goes All Online, New America Media, August 15, 2008. http://news.newamericamedia.org/news/view_article.html?article_id=cc70b6fe0a7f130babc17be46f2119b9

52. Joe Garifoli. “Black Bloggers Fight to Make Voices Heard.” San Francisco Chronicle. May 31, 2008. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/05/31/MN1T110MF0.DTL&type=printable

53. U.S. Census. Profile of Selected Demographic and Social Characteristics: 2000. http://www.census.gov/population/cen2000/stp-159/STP-159-africa.pdf

54. African Connection Newspaper Online, About Us. http://www.acnewsinc.com/pages/Aboutus.htm

55. New America Media Online Ethnic Media Directory (subscribers only). https://news.newamericamedia.org/directory/show_item.html?cdc_id=36a1eb72b84be94e5df96392e68bfc8b

*New America Media is a California-based association of ethnic news organizations founded by the nonprofit Pacific News Service in 1996. According to its website,  “NAM is dedicated to bringing the voices of the marginalized -ethnic minorities, immigrants, young people, elderly — into the national discourse.”

56. African Sun Times 2008 Media Kit

57. African Sun Times 2008 Media Kit