Today – on what would have been the 91st birthday of Malcolm X – I am pleased to officially announce our new YouTube channel. It is called “Black Liberation University,” and I will take some time in this article to explain and describe why we created it, the needs it meets. and how you can become part of our team. Our hope is that Black people around the world will subscribe, view clips from our video library frequently, and help us spread the word.
How this project was born
I’m sure you are familiar with several Black Power, Black Nationalist or Afrocentric YouTube channels. They all play important roles in terms of raising consciousness and exposing our people to Nationalist perspectives and empowering information. In speaking with brother and sister organizers and educators around the country however, many of us agreed that:
- Some of these channels focus almost entirely on ancient African history.
- Other channels often feature personalities who are argumentative and discussions that are divisive and hostile.
- Far too often, certain existing channels address topics that are of questionable relevance or issues that do not confront our most pressing issues.
- Because the internet in general provides so much information with so many advertisements, research can become confusing and distracting for those seeking specific information.
The Objectives of the Black Liberation University
Our YouTube Channel aims to provide one-stop shopping for Black people seeking information related to Black Liberation in several areas. Black Liberation University has the following playlists: history, political prisoners, racism/white supremacy, mental health, education, real estate, community organizing, and much more. By providing such a broad selection of topics/information, the BLU helps our people to raise consciousness, identify self-defeating behavior, and develop the capacity to solve problems in our communities utilizing the benefits of online technology. Below you will see a screenshot that shows our extensive selection of topics/playlists.
The Benefits of Black Liberation University
The flexibility of using an online platform like YouTube, is that it allows us to create and receive unlimited amounts of customized information all day everyday, with no cost and with no geographic restrictions. The only people that will not have access to our channel are people living in countries with no internet access. Since so many people have a smartphone, tablet or laptop with internet access, a camera and microphone, Black people around the world can not only watch and hear our content, but create content for our channel as well! More about that later….
People will be able to use our network and plug into information in just about every major area without spending time surfing several different areas of the internet. Rather than presenting information in a competitive manner that promotes division and in-fighting, our channel recognizes the need for several perspectives, approaches and methods and allows people using it to make their own independent choices. Even differing perspectives are complimentary and useful in their own way, especially when received by reasonable Black folk with the ability to think critically and flexibly.
Join our Team!
We want to build a team of core Black people around the United States and globally who create original content for Black Liberation University. We need people to do recorded and Live streamed material in the various subject areas we cover (Review the playlists above). For YouTube Channels to be successful, they must be consistent, informative/relevant, and contain videos that are easy-to-follow and of high quality. For these reasons, we need for all of you to consider the following:
• To participate, you will need a laptop, desktop or smartphone with a good quality camera, microphone, and reliable internet access. Videos should be recorded in HD (High Definition) quality, easy to hear, and not “jumpy.”
• Identify and provide content in one or two areas of expertise. People will only come to trust and use our channel is they believe we offer them accurate and useful information. We seek qualified and energetic team players. We demonstrate qualification by experience, study, or formal education. Ideally, we want everyone to establish themselves as a go to person in one of the specialty areas (playlists) we have. You will need to be honest with yourself to distinguish those areas in which you are strong or have expertise, from areas of personal interest.
If you are Black, you meet these qualifications, and this sounds appealing to you, please review and follow the instructions in the graphic above. We hope to hear from you no later than June 1. 2016! In the meantime, please visit Black Liberation University, subscribe to our channel, check out our videos, and help us spread the word!
Agyei Tyehimba is an educator, activist and author from Harlem, N.Y. Agyei is a former NYC public schoolteacher, co-founder of KAPPA Middle School 215 in the Bronx, NY, and co-author of the Essence Bestselling book, Game Over: The Rise and Transformation of a Harlem Hustler, published in 2007 by Simon & Schuster. In 2013, he wrote The Blueprint: A BSU Handbook, teaching Black student activists how to organize and lead. In April of 2014, he released Truth for our Youth: A Self-Empowerment Book for Teens. In 2015, he wrote My Two Cents: Unsolicited Writings on Race, Politics, and Culture. Agyei has appeared on C-Span, NY1 News, and most recently on the A&E documentary, “The Mayor of Harlem: Alberto ‘Alpo’ Martinez.” Currently, Agyei is a member of the Black Power Cypher, five Black Nationalist men with organizing backgrounds, who host a monthly internet show addressing issues and proposing solutions. He runs his own business publishing books, public speaking, and teaching Black people how to organize and fight for empowerment. He is the founder and coordinator of Harlem Liberation School and the YouTube channel Black Liberation University.
Agyei earned his Bachelor’s Degree in sociology from Syracuse University, his Master’s Degree in Africana Studies from Cornell University, and his Master’s Degree in Afro-American Studies from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
If you are interested in bringing Agyei to speak or provide consultation for your organization, please contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.