Instagram introduces tags that allow black content creators to recognize
Popular social media platform Instagram announced on Monday that it is introducing a special new tag that will help business accounts and influencers get credit for their content.
The tag is the brainchild of two African American women from Instagram, where Alexis Michelle Adjei is a data analyst and Cameryn Boyd is an engineer. According to a BNC News report, the pair created the improved tag to address “inequality in the creator ecosystem.”
“We want to make sure that as content from black creators is distributed the way it already is, they get the proper attribution so they have the opportunity to get all of those opportunities for growth, monetization, and start-ups. career as their contemporaries are,” says Boyd. “It’s really critical, as we move into this new era where creators are so important and where creators are truly able to use their craft to support themselves in their lives, that black creators have the same opportunity, because they are already creating the content.”
The report notes that a December study by MSL, a global PR firm, found that 41% of white influencers earn $100,000 or more, compared to 23% of black influencers on social media. Concretely, the pay gap is 35% between white and black influencers.
“There have been rumors of a racial pay gap for years, but no one in our industry has quantified it until now,” said By Anthony Jackson, an MSL strategist. “These are striking numbers by any measure. Just compare the 35% gap between white and black influencers to pay gaps in other sectors: education 8%, business and finance 16%, construction 19%, media, sports and entertainment 16%. The gap this study uncovered in influencer marketing far dwarfs the shortcomings of any other industry.
Instagram is owned by Meta, formerly Facebook. Adjei and Boyd joined the company in August 2020 and worked diligently to pitch their idea to various teams at the social media giant. They eventually found the support and worked to bring it to life.
The improved tag apparently won’t affect the algorithm but, based on its current model, will allow creators’ reach to grow organically. Its development comes after years of complaints from black social media creators and influencers, who have not been credited for setting trends and have been denied opportunities to make money from their work.
“Now you can just have this improved tag and the idea was because we know content from black creators was already going viral and getting shared. But they weren’t getting this attribution,” Boyd said. “Hope is that they will now get the credit and that piece of content where their contribution can be traced back to their accounts so that people have an opportunity to follow them and they can grow their influence.”
A December 2021 article by Initiated brought to light the story of dancers from the group “Alors On Danse”, who created a viral video.
One said in the video, “The opportunities these artists or creators get are really life changing.” However, Akua Sackey added, “We have proven time and time again that black creators go unrecognized. And people just don’t care about black designers.
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