You would think after the “Black Vogue” issue, After Francesca Sozzani swooped across Africa with the claims to ‘help’ the continent, after Naomi Campbell fired shots about racism in the industry, that the remaining racism, if any, would at least be swept under a carpet.
So this part is much confusing. For years now, Vogue Italia has had a ‘Black Blog’. Yes a black blog! On oneside it may sound good to some, the very charitable magazine is nice enough to care about us blacks begging so hard to be featured in Vogue so here they are to the rescue with a ‘Black Blog’, but do kindly think into it a bit more.
The deception of how supportive this demeaning ‘Black Blog’ of talent is, extends even further as a business strategy and here is the enlightenment. I have watched the ‘Black Blog’ closely for a while. Every time an African or black person living abroad is featured they get so excited it’s border line funny. But why not, after all, Vogue magazine is one of the most popular fashion brands INTERNATIONALLY, despite the continuous trails of offensive racism and limited acceptance of black/African models.
What most don’t know is as they sit in their feature in the black blog, the ‘black blog’ segment hardly appears on the front page and main content links on the website. So technically to the typical Vogue reader, if they have not set out to particularly click on the ‘Black Blog’ which I am sure most of their fans don’t go out their way to read ‘Black Articles’ then what is happening here is as you get excited about your feature sharing it every where, you are actually promoting them far more than they are doing to and for you.
It’s very similar to the pageant / model social media complex where girls run around screaming vote for me, all whilst actually promoting the event.
A very nice strategy to have various ‘black’ people across the world promote Vogue Italia for a feature whilst Vogue Italia does very little to non exposure in return. Meaning that it is really just a space for “black” people to promote Vogue Italia and it’s other ‘non black’ content, whilst the only exposure, acknowledgement and promotion they receive in return, is that from the other ‘black’ people who also promote their appearances on the ‘Black Blog’. Nice promotional strategy, don’t you think? Unfortunately, its racially motivated.
So why is it, that if an African designer, or black in general has their work featured on the Vogue Italia website, it is strictly separated from everything else and put into a section known as the ‘Black Blog’. However every other story being covered fits perfectly on the website. I’ve double checked over the past couple of months, Chinese, Asians (in general), and other ‘COLOURS’ of people do not have their own coloured section in Vogue Italia.
Are black people not trendy enough for Vogue? Can we not just be featured without having to be in the ‘black blog’ waste basket? Yes, that’s where the ‘black’ people are, whether your name is Rhianna, Tyra Banks, Naomi Campbell or Black Jesus, if you haven’t got fair skin, you get the black blog.
As I’ve stated many times, chasing fair journalism with press such as this is literally a waste of time, however, if you are paying money to be featured or partnered, do consider your ‘Black blog’ terms or push them a bit further to be more considerate of yourself as a person and a creative.