Jay Sparrow is a young African American man with a keen interest in journalism. He currently studies journalism at the collegiate level; however, Sparrow has made a living the past eight years working as a live event coordinator. Sparrow’s duties have been to incorporate mainstream music artists with local independent artists in order to organize concert performances. He helps local artists in New York city make money by paying them based on the number of guests they successfully get to attend a show. The impact of covid-19 has prevented Sparrow from organizing any shows recently, and he now fears that he may not be able to for the remainder of 2020.
The pandemic and the civil unrest that the United States has endured the past few months has inspired Sparrow to create his N.W.O. platform. Similarly to hip hop group N.W.A., N.W.O. is an acronym which establishes how certain black folks identify themselves in America and how they plan to utilize that identity. The group members of N.W.A. (N****s Wit Attitude) chose the group name they did in order to express that they were unfazed by society’s opinions. The harsh attitude these rappers possessed was meant to be combative against the oppressive American society they were caged in. Sparrow uses the acronym N.W.O. to establish his identity and what he intends to do with it. N.W.O. (N***a With Opinions) aims to provide an alternative news source for people who aren’t too fond of CNN. It essentially provides raw news, which celebrates urban culture, and disseminates information typically ignored by mainstream media. Aside from providing news that other platforms don’t, N.W.O. will also acknowledge significant information which major platforms cover as well. Although people could learn the same facts about a news story on CNN, some would be more inclined to get their news from N.W.O. simply because they appreciate the perspective that Sparrow can provide more than that of a CNN reporter. Sparrow compares the discussions held on his platform to conversations held in a barbershop. Usually, barbershop talk covers infinite topics and can be tangential, but it can often be very informative.
Episodes of N.W.O. can be viewed live or on demand via Facebook. It is a necessary platform to enlighten people who avoid mainstream news sources by providing them with crucial information in a relatable way. Some of the segments on N.W.O include “Real N***a Museum,” which celebrates black individuals who should be remembered as strong assets to black culture, and the “Karen Segment,” which identifies white folks who have abused their privilege at the expense of a black person’s safety. Sparrow loves the interactive aspect of his platform as it enables N.W.O. viewers to comment and ask questions while an episode is airing. He claims that as a journalist who decided to create N.W.O., he is unapologetic in all that he says and does. Sparrow does not give credence to “cancel culture.” He encourages people to never say things unless they truly believe them. N.W.O. is a free space to express how you really feel, and Sparrow intends to do just that.
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