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BlackPlanet Doc

UPDATED: 3:30 p.m. ET, July 3, 2023

Originally published on Nov. 23, 2022

Amid Twitter’s apparent deathward spiral, social media users have been increasingly expressing the desire for a viable alternative to the microblogging site. And now that Elon Musk has imposed a limit on the number of tweets users can read, the seeming Twitter exodus has been even more pronounced than ever.

While most of the chatter has centered on the Black-owned social media app Spill, which is still in its testing beta phase and hasn’t been fully rolled out, a fair number of nostalgia-tinged tweets on Monday morning kindly reminded Twitter users that BlackPlanet is still very much open for business.

“Before MySpace, FaceBook, Twitter, IG, SnapChat, etc… Black folks had BlackPlanet, until they sold it and teiwd to over monetize the platform with ads,” one Twitter user wrote. “Black America helped make Twitter into an everyday conversation we don’t need them…”

What is BlackPlanet?

BlackPlanet, one of the first social media hubs before the term truly existed, established itself early on as a gathering place for Black people looking to connect with their communities on a variety of fronts. With Twitter facing a possible shutdown, BlackPlanet is inviting users to reboot their old accounts or create new ones by clicking here.

BlackPlanet was launched in 2001 by Omar Wasow and Benjamin Sun and it swiftly became one of the most popular destinations on the Web despite not being owned by Black people. As part of the Community Connect ecosystem, the site co-existed alongside MiGente and Asian Avenue, all serving the respective communities as suggested by the URLs although each site was open to users of all backgrounds.

In full transparency, both BlackPlanet and NewsOne are owned by Urban One, Inc. and BlackPlanet operates under the same umbrella along with other Urban One media properties as part of iOne Digital.


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