Tag Archives: web

Celebrity Cyber Report – Jay-Z, Dave Chappelle, LeBron James

LeBron James Uninterrupted & Unstoppable


LeBron James

Pro athletes will tell you nothing is more frustrating than seeing snippets of an answer to a question in the newspapers that end up being misleading or out of context . Its a major issued between athletes and sport reporters.

That’s all about to change thanks to NBA star LeBron James. James is launching a new social media platform named LeBron James’ Uninterrupted.  The platform will allow sports stars to speak out unfiltered and uninterrupted.

Sports stars have transcended beyond just athletes to become celebrities with commercials, endorsement deals and even television and movie roles. Warner Bros. and Turner Sports have seen this transition and decided to invest $15.8 million in James’ platform. According to the Hollywood Reporter the idea was originally financed by James himself along with his manager Maverick Carter. The new money from Turner and Warner Bros. help will expand content, focus on big names in sports and expand to mobile, web, and social media platforms, and even to TV and film.

LeBron told the Hollywood Reporter “It’s giving athletes an opportunity to have a platform where they can speak about any issue. They don’t have to wait to be in front of a camera.”

Already Uninterrupted has been used by athletes to speak out. New England Patriot tight end Rob Gronkowski updated his fans about his recent injury. Other athletes that have used the platform include Ronda Rousey and Serena Williams.

James has an already impressive entertainment presence. He has appeared in Amy Schumer’s summer hit Trainwreck and he and Carter have a partnership with Warner Bros. through their company Spring Hill Entertainment.

The partnership with Warner Bros. is impressive. Together the two companies are slated to create content across multiple platforms including the web, documentary and feature films and scripted and reality television. LeBron’s entertainment venture has an expanding project portfolio besides the Uninterrupted platform. This includes Disney XD’s inspirational series Becoming, the Starz’ breakout scripted comedy Survivor’s Remorse and an upcoming prime-time game show for NBC.

Another young black man without an advanced education making big business moves.

Jay-Z & Tidal Music



Hip-Hop mogul Jay-Z has announced the hiring of a new CEO for his Tidal music streaming service. Starting in January Jeff Toig, a streaming music veteran will take over the reins of Tidal Music. Toig’s resume includes positions as chief business officer at Soundcloud and a founding role in Cricket Wireless’ streaming app Muve Music.

Jay-Z refuses to give in to the constant rumors and so-called expert analysis that predict that Tidal is dead or dying. Among the rumors is hints of a partnership with Samsung but nothing has been confirmed.  This is the third CEO in just over six months at Tidal. With a new CEO Jay-Z is hoping the veteran executive can spark new life in the artist owned venture.

What Jay-Z is doing is trying to do is compete in a highly competitive space with Apple Music, Spotify and other more established music streaming services. 

But the real interesting fact of this story is that a young black man educated on the streets of Brooklyn just hired a Harvard Business School graduate  to run one of his many business ventures! The world is changing.

Dave Chappelle & Yondr

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Dave Chappelle

Comedian Dave Chappelle, like many performers, have become fed up with the presence of cell phones at their performances. Because of the steady advancements in technology many performances are being recorded and shared on YouTube and other websites. Performers are also fed up with the distraction of phones ringing during performances.

 Chappelle has joined forced with the tech start-up Yondr to shut down cellphone users during his performances. Yondr makes cellphone cases that prevents people from using their cellphones inside the venue where he will be performing. The phone case locks once it enters a defined area. If the user wishes to use the phone they must leave the area causing the case to unlock.

Chappelle is booked to perform 13 sold-out shows at Thalia Hall in Chicago beginning on December 3rd. People attending the show will have to place their phones inside of Yondr’s smartphone sleeves before entering the venue.  





Top 100 African-Americans on Social Media


Courtesy of Eelan Media

Courtesy of Eelan Media

Eelan Media recently released its list of the Top 100 Most Influential Black People in Digital and Social Media. The list contains a powerful cross section of global entertainers, politicians, business people and activist. The group is recognized for its blogging, tweeting, Facebook, YouTube and Vine videos, posting on Instagram, Pinterest, Google+ and answering questions on Quora. 

Eelan Media clearly explains that “the purpose of this list wasn’t to create a Who’s Who of the rich and famous. Rather it’s purpose is to identify those people who have embraced social media as part of their marketing and communication strategy to HUG – Hear understand and give back incredible value, to their communities.”

This was an incredible task undertaken by Eelan Media and they used the following criteria to collect the people named in the list. 

  • Being active on more than one social media platform,
  • Klout score (Whilst I’ve used this to rank people I did note that there are instances where the score seemed at odds with the individual’s sphere of influence. No one was excluded from the list solely because they weren’t listed on Klout),
  • Contributing to publications
  • Speaking at major conferences
  • Size of community

I applaud Eelan Media for this endeavor as it clearly reflects that black people are utilizing the web for the advancement of  black issues. Black people are as present on the Internet as they are anywhere else and our influence is rising. Twitter use among African-Americans is poised to surpass other segments of the population. We have made our presence felt in every facet of the web from online shopping to self-help websites and countless business ventures. But Eelan Media has rightfully pointed out that black speakers are rarely seen at major social media conferences.

We are also facing a vast gap in the presence of black people in the technology field. Overall we represent less than two percent of the technology industry. In an  op-ed in USA Today, Information Technology Industry Council chief executive Dean Garfield said Silicon Valley needs the help of everyone from “parents to policymakers” to root out the sector’s “diversity problem.”

In a recent Washington Post story Google released statistics revealing its employee breakdown as an indicator of the diversity problem in the Silicon Valley.

The numbers don’t lie but I do not believe the problem is racial in nature. Perhaps we need to look at how we are educating our children and preparing them for the jobs of the future.