One Hood Challenges the Media Portrayal of Black Youth


The above documentary, “Game Changers” was written and produced by Chris Moore for WQED TV. According to Mr. Moore, “Jasiri X and Paradise Gray of One Hood Media are Game Changers who are teaching young black men how to play the media game and control their own images. In this day of the Internet they don’t need anyone’s permission to blog or shoot their own videos, they control the vertical and the horizontal, and thus they realize the power that they have to change the way they are perceived in popular culture. It is a transformative moment when these students finally get in the game, they become Game Changers.”

One Hood Media Academy, established by Jasiri X and Paradise “The Arkitech” Gray, in conjunction with August Wilson Center for African American Culture and a generous donation provided by the Heinz Endowments, is the tool to help African American young men critically analyze media messages, broaden their experience of media, and develop the creative skills needed in producing their own media. The mission is to improve self-image, dispel stereotypes, and provide a positive forum of self-expression.  The program is offered to 25 young African-American men, ages 13-19.  The course will include, though not limited to, the art of blogging, video production, and social media. Applications for entry are now being accepted until February 1, 2013. The Academy will be held at the Elite Studios, 901 Western Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA.

David Banner

David Banner

One Hood Media Academy’s opening ceremony will be held at the August Wilson Center for African American Culture on January 25, 2013 at 7 p.m. with special guest, Grammy award winning, multi-platinum artist David Banner.  A Conversation with David Banner will include an in depth discussion with David Banner regarding the Black male image in Hip Hop, his career and current activities, as well as current state of Hip Hop.  The ceremony will also feature a performance by One Hood Media Academy graduates Jordan Montgomery and Cameron Layne.

media Distractions & Domestic Terror Dominated 2010-Will it Continue in 2011?

Welcome  2011.. It’s a new year and with that comes the opportunity to shed bad habits, improve ourselves, spark new beginnings and take our day to day activities to higher levels.

It’s the time we reflect on the highs and lows of the past year and craft achievable resolutions that will help us eradicate the things we found troublesome in 2010. In’s time to grow..time to evolve. But what will grow into? How do we want to evolve?

That’s something we all of us should be seriously be thinking in the new year.

For me, I wanna re-center myself and reconnect with my humanity in 2011. I feel like there’s been a push to keep us disconnected from emotions like love, compassion and concern for our  fellow man.

Some of us were caught up in playing a perpetual games of one upmanship while the rest of us were in such dire economic straits that we behaved badly and were mean spirited out of desperation and in our misguided attempts to ‘make it’ and survive.

In 2010 I saw a lot of anger and scapegoating. I heard a lot of yelling and people being dismissive. This past year I saw a lot of shady behavior.  I also saw alot of media distractions that took away from what many would argue were more pressing issues.

In 2011 I want all of us to regain our humanity. Stay Human and find the humanity in others should be our motto.

2010 was the Year of Distractions

When look back at the stories that dominated the news in 2010 many of them seemed frivolous. It was the year that we were hit upside the dome with story after story about things like the bedbug epidemic, the Dougie dance,, actress Lindsey Lohan going to jail, the over-the-top antics of the Jersey Shore cast and of course the upcoming royal wedding between Prince William and some woman named Kate Middleton.

Were these stories put out there to keep us talking, dumb us down and keep us from not looking deeper into the world around us? For example, did you or anyone you know have bedbugs in 2010? What was the impact? Did this bedbug drama impact us more than the harmful chemical dispersants that were put in the waters of the Gulf to clean up the BP Oil spill?

People stopped asking questions like; ‘What happened to the Gulf Coast residents and their economy?’ ‘Did they rebound?’

‘What happened to that 20 billion dollars BP was supposed to pay people whose businesses and livelihood was destroyed?’  What happened to all the wildlife we saw covered with oil?

Am I the only one who recalls seeing videos of  dolphins trying to swim through a plumes of oil, even though BP kept insisting the plumes were non existent?

Did we forget that 13 people died when the initial explosion occurred that set off the massive spill. May those men rest in peace. May their families find peace…Makes you wonder where all those folks yelling Drill Baby Drill disappeared to in the wake of what is now the biggest man made disaster in our country’s history?

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Media is Mind Control: Afrika Bambaataa vs Hot 97

Media is mind control has long been a sentiment held by  folks who felt that deliberate distortions and mischaracterizations my broadcast media was a weapon that led to entire communities being dehumanized. We saw this take place in winter of 2004 when Hot 97 deejays got on air just two days after what many considered to be the worst natural disaster in history and made fun of the 200 thousand people who perished.

The Hip Hop community was outraged and came after Hot 97 led by an organization called REACH.. a big rally was held in front of the station where all sorts of artists and activists came out and spoke truth to power. Among the speakers was  Hip Hop pioneer Afrika Bambaataa and long time activist and former Green Party Vice presidential candidate Rosa Clemente. We married their powerful words to some remarks made by Minister Louis Farrakhan on media and the way it influences people’s thinking.. Opening up the mashup is media justice advocate Malkia Cyril


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