If you’re not already following, sharing, and celebrating the hundreds of Black creators posting brilliantly viral TikTok content, there’s only one thing I can say: What is going on with your For You Page? But don’t fret, TikTok has stepped in to help your algorithm out a bit. The app just released its first-ever Black Visionary Voices list this month, honoring more than a dozen creators across beauty, fashion, music, entertainment, education, and more, as well as a special #BlackTikTok content hub. Time to add to that following list.
The honor is part of a larger #BlackTikTok campaign launched by the company in honor of Black History Month, which begins Feb. 1. TikTok will release in-app programming, such as creator and Black-owned business spotlights, playlists featuring the work of Black artists, and TikTok LIVE broadcasts with honored users. The month will also include in-person programming with creators in Los Angeles.
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One event already on the schedule is a six-hour TikTok LIVE stream set for Feb. 24, featuring Black chefs, artists, and musicians. Users can follow the official @BlackTikTok(Opens in a new window) account for continued updates on this month’s programs.
The app’s Visionary Voice list is particularly important for the visibility of Black creators on the app, who historically have gone uncredited in originating viral sounds, dances, and app-wide trends — the lack of recognition even led a group of creators to boycott the app in 2021. It’s a modern, social-media based iteration of a pervasive problem, one in which sociocultural institutions devalue the contributions of Black communities. Responding to growing criticism over the last few years, other social media apps have instituted new systems to credit Black creators. Still, many Black creators continue to struggle(Opens in a new window) getting an equal amount of interaction, views, and payment(Opens in a new window) for the same content created by white creators.
The cohort of 15 honorees is divided into three categories — creators, industry disruptors, and small business owners — and represents just how far-reaching, and influential, #BlackTikTok truly is. Standout TikTok successes include music artist and TikTok sound pioneer Ice Spice(Opens in a new window), and the comedic powerhouse character Terri Joe(Opens in a new window), created by comedian Kelon.(Opens in a new window)
Check out more of the honored creators below.
Kelon, comedian (@_itzpsyiconic_)(Opens in a new window)
Kennedy, gaming and lifestyle influencer (@cozy.games(Opens in a new window))
Emmanuel Uddenberg, fashion and lifestyle influencer (@emmanuel.uddenberg)(Opens in a new window)
Kahlil Greene, digital educator (@kahlilgreene)(Opens in a new window)
Emira D’Spain, fashion and beauty influencer (@xoxoemira)(Opens in a new window)
Lisette Eduardo, businesswoman and media influencer (@chikybomreal)(Opens in a new window)
Ice Spice, rapper and singer (@icespicee)(Opens in a new window)
Keith Lee, food critic (@keith_lee125(Opens in a new window)
Lynae Vanee, poet, producer, and director (@lynaevanee)(Opens in a new window)
Maiya the Don, hip hop artist (@maiyathedon)(Opens in a new window)
Small business owners
Brandon Blackwood, founder and CEO of Brandon Blackwood(Opens in a new window) (@brandonblackwoodnyc)(Opens in a new window)
Danessa Myricks, makeup artist and founder of Danessa Myricks Beauty(Opens in a new window) (@danessamyricksbeauty)(Opens in a new window)
Summer Lucille, creator and entrepreneur (@juicybodygoddess)(Opens in a new window)
Olumide Shokubi, founder and owner of Spice Kitchen (@spicekitchengrill)(Opens in a new window)
Courtney B. and Zan B.R., co-founders of Urban Dessert Lab(Opens in a new window) (@urbandessertlab)(Opens in a new window)
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