Deshuna Spencer was featured in our November 2014 issue. Then, KweliTV was a still a dream and Empower Magazine was the forefront, now KweliTV has been making its way onto Facebook newsfeeds and television screens. It is real and she is blowing up. We are proud of her success!
Spencer sleeps, eats and breathes community service. When Au’loni Magazine asked her about how she felt about her success she said it’s really not about her, it’s about the people she’s helping.
“A lot of times people tend to make things about themselves and they come from a self-centered point of view and way of thinking and that’s the last thing that I want to do,” she said. “But, of course it’s rewarding to know that you’re making a difference, with something you put out there.”
Her project, KweliTV, is being called the Black Netflix and it has close to 6 thousand registered users, which is much more than she expected at such an early stage.
The idea for KweliTV came from her frustrations with how Black people were depicted in the news and in movies.
“A lot of times when we see content focusing on the African Diaspora it’s very negative,” Spencer said. “When we see someone in the news who is of African descent, for a man people think you’re a thug if you’re a woman you’re ghetto, you’re a baby’s momma. If you’re from Africa you’re poor, you have Ebola or HIV or you’re a child soldier.”
She believes these depictions are having a negative impact on the Black communities and how they see themselves so KweliTV is a way to change the narrative. Spencer says the successes should be celebrated just as much as the failures have been exposed.
“I know there are socio-economic problems facing the Black community, but we’re such a diverse group of people and I feel like our stories should reflect that,” Spencer said.
Spencer is still looking for content to put onto KweliTV but is very picky about it – after all it is a professional service. According to her, only the best quality movies are chosen, mostly those that have appeared in film festival or has received a lot of reviews.
Instead of classic films like “Love and Basketball” or “The Best Man” being the center of attention Spencer plans to give other people a chance to shine.
“Not to say that it won’t ever happen but right now we’re only focusing on independent media. We want to highlight people who have award winning films who just don’t get the international attention.”
In the future she hopes to combine Empower Magazine with KweliTV to connect her audiences.
“I’m thinking of creating a video web series, strictly sponsored by our magazine that focuses on some content already in the magazine,” she said.
In addition to combining it with the magazine she hopes to add components where after watching a movie, people have a way to discuss the film or learn more about the featured issues.
There’s still a lot of beta testing being done and changes being made to KweliTV to insure that the service works smoothly for the customers.
For more information please visit www.kweli.tv.