Author Archives: Tiffany

About Tiffany

A journalist indulging in the world of culture, destiny, entertainment, politics and most relevant of them all, sharing my love for words and information with you.

Free Paper for the people!


It is free, independent and successful and that is The Indypendent newspaper, a free paper for free people. Founded in the fall of 2000, The Indypendent was a branch of the worldwide Indy media network. Produced by an estimated 500 volunteer Journalists in areas such as editing, reporting, writing and fundraising, the newspaper publication has distributed over 15,000- 20,000 copies per issue throughout New York City and as well as Internationally.

Their online publication with over 100,000 readerships is available and is constantly updated. The vibrancy of the page sparks curiosity amongst readership. Ranging from Local to national news, culture, current issues, multimedia and blogs. The New York based free newspaper publishes a record 13 times per year every Monday according to the publication’s website.

The Indypendent, is the winner of more than 50 New York community media Alliance awards. It is heavily funded by subscriptions, reader donations; merchandise sales, grants, house parties, benefits and advertising.

You might ask yourself, where can I obtain a copy of The Indypendent, it is foreign to me or I want to help spread the word about this publication. Well, you can volunteer your time contributing financially. Supporters can distribute the newspapers at venues and busy subway stations. Or you can simply own a copy at venues in the Greater New York area or at political and cultural events.


Social Politics


The media plays a powerful role in our lives daily. It informs the world of the status quo. Without the media, the general public would be oblivious of what is taking place around them. Therefore, it is true that the media has always been a powerful independent factor in the conduct of American politics. Media is a platform for politicians because that is one of their tools to reach Americans. It allows politicians to publicize their concerns and reasoning to grasp their audience’s attention. Without media, politics wouldn’t be as popular as it is currently. I believe that media and politics support and elevate each other. Politics have influenced media tremendously because there are now news carriers or papers that are committed to political opinions 24/7; stations like CNN or MSNBC are networks that are affiliated and highly opinionated on political affairs. politics

Television and newspapers aren’t the only outlets that contribute to politics, but the rise in social media has played a tremendous role. Sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Tumbler and Twitter are tuning into political events and publicity of politicians. These media outlets are making it possible for modern day campaigns and political parties to get their messages out unfiltered. It spreads the ideal goals of politicians to target a group of people they want involved in their political campaign. The 2012 presidential campaign was a major turning point in U.S. history and the history of journalism. Each time you signed on to a social media site, the presidential campaign was advertised. It has captured the attention of young people making politics the number one topic. Both political parties are using websites such as Facebook and Twitter to allow their target audience to tune in and share their thoughts on the campaign.

Therefore, this action has captured the attention of young adults. Each time a user would log in to their profile, the political campaign was advertised. Newspapers, radios and Televisions were the only outlet for former presidents like Nixon and Eisenhower to reach people. But with the change in media, incumbent president of the US, Barack Obama, and other political campaigners were able to access the public via social media.

It is said that “today, over 1 billion Facebook users alone- up to 115 million users during the 2008 election- and countless others using other social media sites, the impact of social media could make or break a campaign”

Therefore, with media growth, it has played a significant factor in American politics. It has broadened its horizon reaching young people, changing the effectiveness of politics.Technology has transformed the history of media. It has given the public various options on viewing and receiving information. I believe the most significant technological transformation was the steam power that changed the way papers were printed. Before this advancement, papers were printed physically. With the physical labor of printing newspapers daily, it limited the amount of papers produced.

However, with the technological transformation, “Steam power changed printing by greatly speeding up the process, making possible the mass-circulation daily papers that emerged in big cities in the nineteenth century,” according to Christopher B. Daly, Covering America.  With this advancement, more papers were printed daily. It is most significant because it propelled the business into new ways of sharing news to the public. Workers no longer had to work long hours to print a single newspaper and the process of printing was increased.

The changing media landscape and Mulitmedia reporting


journalismRemember the days when you read your daily news on a black and white paper, where the words jumped from the pages into your mind provoking thought? Well, thanks to the advancement of the technological era we live in, the world of news is rapidly changing.

Magazines and newspapers were the number one outlet for the media to get the news across to the public. There has been a rise in hand held gadgets and World Wide Web pages that keeps the world abreast of contemporary affairs. Sites like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram are all social websites that contemporary youth frequently visit. They serve as an outlet that keeps the world updated on the news.

Social websites are not the only outlet for breaking news, but there are several other options they use. News can be delivered via television, images, videos or audios. These changes have made Journalism competitive. The advancement of technology being a reliable source of information has given the media a plethora of options in presenting the daily news. Now readers are able to click and read the New York Times or Daily News on the net or on an app.

Today, anyone can be a Journalist, known as Citizen Journalism. If there is a shooting on the corner of campus road, New York Times won’t be the first media outlet to share the breaking news, but a regular chemistry student shares the new on his blog. Blogs are now the latest trend. Almost everyone have a blog, even if they are not a professional Journalist.

The rise in the advancement of technology has made Journalism a cutthroat industry. A professional now has to compete with non-Journalist in sharing the news. Keeping up with the latest in order to keep their audience informed and the news current is now a requirement for all Journalists.

The emergence of upcoming Journalist will be able to maneuver their way through the competitive industry because the advancement in technology occurred throughout their generation. Journalism has gone through several changes. At the inception of the industry, newspaper was created and operated only by men. Throughout Journalism history, there were issues of censorship, papers operated and owned only by men; women like Nelly Bly or The Sob Sisters all contributed to the phases of the industry. Now women are a part of the Journalism field delivering compelling news to their audience.

Nelly Bly, perhaps the first editors of newspapers had no clue what the news would be like in 20 years. We have heard news on the radio, viewed the news on television and now we are able to read it on the World Wide Web. The point is upcoming Journalist should continue to embrace the diversity in news publications. Keep up with the latest advancement and break into the habit of telling the news through the lens of multimedia. 20 years from today, news will blow our minds in the way in which it is presented to the mass.

Bye-Bye to Creamy Crack


A woman’s hair is considered to be her crowning glory. It creates beauty, pride and confidence. It comes in all textures, colors and styles. Question is, what does your hair say about you?  Whether it is short, long, kinky, straight, curly, natural, or in braids, it plays a big part in who you are and how you feel about yourself. Lately, there has been a rising trend where African American women are ceasing from using harsh chemicals to straighten their hair and are going all-natural, exposing their natural roots.

For people of color, hair tells a story that unwraps their past. A deep seethed issue arises when hair is discussed amongst African Americans. It dates back to the slave trade where Africans were sold into slavery. European and Arabian slave traders would shave the heads of their new slaves, ridding them of so-called germs and diseases. This was a complete violation for Africans because hair was valued; it identified their origins and their rich culture. “Given the importance of the hair to African, having the head shaved was an unspeakable crime; it was the first step the Europeans took to erase the slave’s culture and alter the relationship between the African and his or her hair” (11) wrote Ayana D. Byrd, author of Hair Story.

With the impact of the slave trade and adapting to a new environment, black slaves had to rely on products that would be ludicrous to the contemporary generation. No longer having their palm oil used for hairdressing, slaves used “household items such as butter, bacon fat or goose grease to shine and straighten hair and a butter knife heated in a can over a fire as a crude curling iron” (Byrd 17).

Hair epitomizes culture, identity and authenticity. With the desire to have straight and manageable hair, African American women slaughtered their hair with chemicals to alter their hair texture. A relaxer is a chemical treatment that turns kinky or tightly curled hair straight. It is a product that must be applied to the newly growth hair to avoid damage and breakage. Chemical relaxer poses as a potential danger to your hair and health because the “caustic nature of the chemicals can damage the hair and or the scalp and permanently alter the texture, length and volume of any future growth” (Byrd 141). Perm hair requires a lot of patience to obtain the desired look; maintenance can be costly proven in our current economy. However, it is less time consuming than natural hair.

I had my first perm at 16 years old,” Shauna Allen said. “I remembered crying each time when my mom had to wash or comb my hair and if I didn’t sit still, I would get licks, it became unbearable and my mom decided she couldn’t manage it anymore so I secretly had my friend relax my hair which was the worst decision ever because I got plenty wounds to my scalp I was in pain,” Allen said jokingly playing with her short Afro because she is in the transitioning stage.

The beauty and hair industry changed for black women when the first self-made African American female millionaire, Madame CJ Walker invented a line of beauty hair products suited for women of color. Born as Sarah Breedlove in Louisiana, 1867, Walker “struggled with scalp disease and baldness” (61) A’Lelia Bundles, the great-great-granddaughter of Madame Walker and author of, On her Own Ground; The life and Times of Madame C.J. Walker, wrote. Walker invented the pressing comb also known as the hot comb. “This device was the first of its kind to be marketed by a black woman to other black women, and it completely changed the hair game,” according to Cheryl Thompson’s blog, Black women and identity: What’s hair got to do with it.

     The status quo is that women of color are turning heads with their new trend of rocking their natural kinks and curls. Natural hair wasn’t socially accepted because “un-straightened looks that display black hair textures are generally perceived as too ethnic, too black or an aggressive challenge to middle-class American Values” (Byrd 177). The stigma on black hair made it impossible for women of color to embrace their natural hair because it was perceived as unacceptable and unattractive.

Usually, comedians use black hair as a form of humor. Whether it was about wigs falling off, weaves, and nappy hair or getting a perm, comedians used hair in their jokes that was usually kept a secret and was a touchy and sensitive topic. Linguistic anthropologist Lanita Jacobs-Huey and author of From the Kitchen to the Parlor, believed that comedians “expanded our understandings of how and why hair matters in African Americans’ everyday lives” (72).

The rising trend of transitioning from chemically relaxed hair to all-natural is now socially acceptable. On most street corners or in some college classrooms, you are likely to spot an African American woman either in their transitioning stage or wearing their natural hair. Reasons for embracing the natural look are for political reasons, fashion statements or the unwillingness to continue damage the scalp with harsh chemicals.

I got tired of it and wanted to give my hair a break from all the chemicals and I’ve been natural for almost two years,” Nicole Foote said, a former student of John Jay College. “I love my natural hair even though it is time consuming, but it allows me to be versatile with my look,” Foote said as her eyes lit with excitement.

Beyond the political stigma that black hair is socially unacceptable and unattractive, women of color are uniting and they are doing so through hair. Sharing ideas and styles are bringing them together. There are tons of books, blogs, and YouTube videos, social network sites with pages devoted to natural hair all to educate those who desire to go natural and support and inspire those who have been on the journey of this growing trend.                                                                     

Chemical Relaxer used to straighten hair

Chemical Relaxer used to straighten hair         

The process of chemically relaxing hair

The process of chemically relaxing hair

Rock the Afro


Hair for African American is a touchy subject because of its ties to the institution of slavery. There were stigmas placed on natural hair that it is socially unacceptable and unattractive. As an alternative, chemicals were invented to straighten African American hair. This process was highly accepted but the crucial health risk and damages to the scalp was and is no good. Therefore, women of color are ceasing from using the harsh chemicals and are growing their natural hair.Contemporary women today are embracing the rising trend of rocking their Afro kinks and curls. It is now socially accepted because it highlights a group of people embracing their culture and their identity.


Hair that was chemically relaxed

Hair that was chemically relaxed

Hair after two years transition process from perm to natural

Hair after two years transition process from perm to natural

And DeBlasio wins


The pragmatic progressive, Mayor Bill De Blasio won the mayoral election on Tuesday night after campaigning throughout New York City with republican running mate, Joseph Lhota.The polls showed that De Blasio brought in majority of the votes at 71 percent. “The turn out is great and I’m happy to see that New Yorkers care about the progress and the future of their city,” Norman Anthony, 73, a former politician from Jamaica West Indies.

After the votes were counted, Mayor De Blasio was introduced to innumerable supporters chanting and cheering him on to deliver his victory speech. “I think he have a good head for politics,” Chirlane McCray said of her husband. “When I first met Bill, I knew he was smart, Bill is strong enough to fight he can take on the challenge we face.”Praising her husband for his tireless work and dedication to New Yorkers, McCray excitedly welcomed her husband to the podium greeted by his multicultural children; his son with his iconic afro and daughter with her prominent head piece.

In an 18-minute victory speech, “Today you spoke out loudly and carefully, from the bottom of my heart, thank you for what you have done,” De Blasio said. New York City is a state that is on the road to progression. It is certainly the embodiment of greatness because any dream is attainable because of the array of opportunities available.  Despite the challenges New York faces, De Blasio implores New Yorkers to stand United.  He reminds them that problems will not be solved overnight but it is a process he is willing to be apart of. “The road ahead will be difficult and it will be traveled. Progressive change will happen and we will overcome the obstacles,” he said. “I will never forget I work for you, we can all reach our highest height when we fight together.”

On his mayoral agenda, De Blasio highlighted his plans on reform policies that he will implement when he becomes the incumbent. Increasing the tax on the wealthy, improvement in public safety, stop hospitals from turning into luxury condos and put an end to the growing inequality amongst New Yorkers.

Bikers attack


Trapped in what appeared to be a group of angry bikers, a man and his family were attacked for attempting to escape the cyclist. Alex Lien and his family were chased in his black SUV on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

In a video recorded by one of the cyclist, Lien’s SUV ran over one of the bikers that is fighting for his life. Leading the pack of bikers in a chase, both Lien’s vehicle and the motorcycles came to a halt in traffic. One of the bikers used his helmet to vandalize Lien’s SUV. He was pulled from his car and beaten in a bloody rage in front of his wife and daughter.