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Hackernoon logoWhy Hacker Noon Dedicated Our Site Wide Banner Placement to #BlackLivesMatter by@linh

Why Hacker Noon Dedicated Our Site Wide Banner Placement to #BlackLivesMatter

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@linhLinh Dao Smooke

Hacker Noon Mama-in-Chief. But also like a real mom (to Norah).

Over the weekend, instead of our usual "taking a break" from work mode, we at Hacker Noon have been talking among each other about the heaviness of past weeks events, and how we as a company can do anything meaningful in response to them.

In the US alone, Covid-19 has (officially) killed one hundred thousand people, a disproportionate number of them are African-American and people of color.

George Floyd, a black man in Minneapolis, was murdered tragically by Derek Chauvin and three other complicit police officers, whose jobs were supposedly to protect citizens like George from harm.

Overnight, protests sparked in 40+ major cities across America, destroying many businesses big and small (some of which just literally started reopening after many weeks of lockdown), triggering heavy-duty police action at both, federal and state levels.

There are decades where nothing happens, and there are days where entire decades happen. This week, this month, this year, has definitely felt like the latter.

History is happening in front of our own eyes. The question is: which side of history do we want to be on?

Yes, Hacker Noon is primarily a tech publication and a software company. Yes, many of our readers only care about software, blockchain or startup content. Yes, there are people on both sides of the aisles contributing to our site and some will inevitably doubt our motive, labeling it "virtue signaling." And yes, giving away our primary revenue source (top navigation billboard) is not a sustainable business model; nor is it going to directly drive time reading, words published, or money made (our three core metrics).

However; unanimously and almost instantaneously as a team, we decided that now is not a time to worry about the optics.

Decades and centuries of injustice can't be solved by one hashtag, one banner, one company, in one day. But neither (and never) can silence.

Furthermore, we acknowledge the power we have as a platform with millions of readers a month. It would be selfish conduct to not take a stance when it comes to systemic violence and basic human rights. (Hey, I'm calling you out, Facebook leadership).

We chose to start by changing our yellow top navigation banner to a credible resource, compiling advocacy works, donation destinations, as well as news, about this ongoing fight.

Here's how it looks on the homepage:

We've also changed our logos across the Hacker Noon social ecosystem to a simple, borderless black-and-white logo to reflect our solidarity with the movement.

In the coming weeks, months, and years, we will focus on the following topics as part of our content recruitment strategy for HackerNoon.com. If you have a story to publish or an idea for partnership, please submit a story or contact us. We are looking to publish and create more discussion around the following topics:

  • Economic impact felt by yourself or your community due to the pandemic
  • "Diversity" hiring stories and data in tech
  • Experiences of running small businesses and startups while being a POC (btw, that's yours truly and I've loved sharing my experience doing that so far)
  • How you are helping your own communities in times of crisis
  • Ways your local entrepreneurs are pivoting their businesses
  • Insight into big tech cultures
  • Educational organizations and brands that elevate the voices of minority
  • Personal growth journeys and essays
  • Deeply technical tutorials for beginners
  • Live events featuring nonwhite keynote speakers
  • Academic essays that tackle implicit bias and racism

Lastly, I wanna leave you with a list of 10 inspiring stories by black writers of Hacker Noon:

Until next time, #BacktotheInternet, educate yourself, and don't be a racist. 

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