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Black News Channel, The First "For the Blacks by the Blacks" News Network Launches

The Black News Channel has gotten very little coverage since launching on Monday, so let us #gayes do the honors.

Black News Channel - BNC - is the first 24-7 news channel that is for-and-by African Americans. Founded by former Rep. J.C. Watts, an Oklahoma Republican, Watts told NBC that the Tallahassee, Florida based news channel has already reached 33 million households with hopes of reaching 100 million households by the end of the roll out.

At the moment, the news channel is reaching out to high African-American concentrated areas such as Atlanta, Los Angeles, and New York City. BNC has launched on Monday and currently streams on Spectrum, Xfinity X-1 and Dish network customers, and will soon be available on Sling and Roku.

To get further exposure, BNC will be partnering with the national Newspaper Publishers Association which holds over 200 African-American owned newspapers. The president, Benjamin Chavis explained the significance of the channel, "Today, information is so targeted to groups,” Watts said. “Every demographic out there has a venue that they can access for news information, culture, wellness, etc. Except for the African American community....One of the things I witnessed in my 30-plus years in the black press is that there's been a tendency for black news to be marginalized and under distributed....The mainstream media covers the pathology of black America. They don't cover the sociology of it. The success stories are important for our community, to see black Americans striving for and achieving excellence."

Now some people might be thinking of media companies like BET but BNC is something far more broad. BET is focused more on music entertainment and is a narrow insight into a community that is viewed as loud, aggressive and popular only as rappers or athletes.

J.C. Watts explained that this news company would be neutral, "We're not looking to be liberal or conservative. We want to provide a venue for African Americans to have a voice, to be a part of the dialogue that's going on in the country, be it incarceration reform or impeachment."

The website continues further stating, "Black News Channel's purpose is to be a news organization that gives voice to the varied experiences, issues, points-of-view and priorities that matter to African Americans. BNC will not just tell a story, but the network will tell the entire story. The network will empower the black community and address the issues of the day in a way that is fresh, bright, and complete. BNC will offer real, responsive, reliable and relevant news coverage by and for African Americans."

A black news channel certainly fills a void, much like Gaye Magazine, but can such a channel survive? #Gayes, will you be watching?


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