Tuesday, August 14, 2007

What up peoples.

Right now, I'm feeling pretty good. Anyone that's been in touch with me for the past 4 or 5 years know that I was unhappy & miserable with my job. But luckily, 2007 has been a blessed year for me. For those that peeped my Apparatus rhyme, & wondered what happened to Part 1. Well it was still being processed in my head cause I still can't believe it. The Apparatus in this case was not a microphone, BUT a magazine concept I created for my job.

Recently, my responsibilities at my job took a turn for the better, because after years of being stuck doing the same tired redundant ads & doing more production work than creative work, I was getting more frustrated. And what was sicker, the artists that were the least creative, was doing more creative & career-growing things, while I felt like the token Black guy to run to when they wanted to know "how to do this in Photoshop", "how to do that in Illustrator", "what's a good font for that?" I was there to teach them, while letting my creative juices evaporate in the steam my boiling temper was creating.

After new management, especially from someone who has seen my contributions first hand in the past 6 years, I'm finally getting a chance to be heard. Right now, I'm assistant managing the magazines our paper are currently running. Great from a creative side, but annoying from a moral perspective, especially as a Black person. Especially on one of the spreads I built about a city in GA called Fort Valley. I chose to do it with pure excitement, cause that was where I went to college. This was a 112 y/o Historical Black University. Now as I read the article to get an idea what to put.... all they talked about was a Packaging Company that specialized in can peaches. WHAT? Now I'm pissed, but then I maintained & remember the establishment I work for. The same establishment that during Hurricane Katrina, after such travesty, they focused a lot of attention on picturing Black victims as looters, while whites were there struggling to survive. I was disgusted then, I didn't even trust the Red Cross there, instead I gave to the churches that were helping victims, cause I assumed Middle GA RED CROSS WOULD BE AS BIAS AS THE REST OF MIDDLE GA.

This leads me to "The Apparatus", my manager wanted us to think of some good ideas for her to present to the board for new concepts & ideas to generate more business to the newspaper. Currently, our marketing dept. is predominately middle-aged white women with no marketing experience. So everything they cater to is for them.... middle-aged white women.. which eliminates the buying power of men, minorities, & the youth. 2 other guys & I came up with a magazine catered to men (although I ended up doing most of the work, with little help from one, & none from the other.) But if that comes into play, they getting off their asses. But the Apparatus was 100% my idea, where I wanted to create an urban magazine that is going to cater to the urban-communities, which is predominately Blacks in this area.

On my premises, I just got real with them & didn't give a damn who I offended. But the place I worked has never been urban friendly, but more conservative. Honestly, I don't expect it to be what I want it to be. But I want to at least let the first one something I'm so proud of, I can put into my portfolio I said, "I created this, cause I wanted to give a voice to people like me." Which was why I called it the Apparatus, which in hip hop has always been a microphone. But here, it's the magazine.

Back to why I think it won't be the way I want it to be.. B/c the same middle-aged white women that knows absolutely nothing about urban or Black culture would probably to managing it. And probably instead of addressing black issues, they'd want to make it like the other lame magazines we have, but have Black people on it. Instead of race issues, Black History facts or police brutality issues, they'd want to put chitlins & collard green recipes on something. or maybe get risque & wanna showcase who has more bling, bling. lol. Either way, before it takes off, I want to get members of the MGBJA (Mid. GA Black Journalist Association) in our Editorial Dept. involved.

In addition, I've been wanting to join the 100 Black Men organization in my area. I finally got a contact number, but I've been too preoccupied to finally call him up. But if I can get in with them, I can advertise their contributions & help in their contributions. A win/win situation for me. And if I could, showcase some great blogs (of course, I'd have to do some editing, to show we don't cuss all the time.. lol. But I know how it is, in the heat of a debate.) BUt I don't just want to showcase Blacks, cause there are other ethnic groups (including whites) that go through things in the urban community as well, so I'd definitely welcome such diversity. Bottom line, I want to give a voice to those that don't get to be heard. cause as long as the ppl involved in the problems in our system are mute, the more it'll persist.

But I'm not putting all of my eggs in this basket, cause like I said. This is a corporate business I'm in. And to be honest, I'm using this opportunity to not only get our voices heard, but to prep myself in starting my own magazine, which I won't have to edit. I can be me all day everyday. I almost kept this idea from my job, but I thought about Ted Demme (R.I.P.) that started Yo! MTV Raps. Before that program, MJ, (like I said in previous blog) was the ONLY Black artist MTV played & they showed other black musicians, especially rap artists no love. But Ted Demme changed all that, all because of his love for hip hop. MTV might've played a part in exploiting Black artists later, but it didn't start off that way & wasn't meant to be that way. If anything, I think BET is doing more damage than MTV at the moment. But if not for MTV Raps, we probably wouldn't have "The Source magazines," "Rap City" & all these other programs, past & present, that cater to hip hop whether good or bad. I can't forsee the future, but I can do what I can while I'm here to try to make things better.

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