Black, For Your Displeasure: Blackbird, the Negro-Pandering Internet Browser

Did you know there’s a new Web browser that’s exactly like Firefox, but now all “Negro-ed” up for our pleasure? Yes! Yes there is! And it’s called Blackbird! And it is DUMB. Amazingly dumb. Especially considering it is exactly like Firefox only it’s black-colored and has some black interest Web sites built into the bookmarks.

Let Adrian Covert of Gizmodo explain:

Wait, why do I need a special web browser? I mean, I get there’s been a long standing digital divide between black America and the technological world (controlled by The Man). But do I really need a repackaged piece of software whose name evokes the Jim Crow era?

Maybe 40A, Inc. (the creator of Blackbird) meant well with Blackbird, but it comes off as a lazy marketing ploy that plays on the emotions of people who are (admittedly) still marginalized when it comes to the online world. And playing along with the notion that blacks and whites (or anyone, for that matter) can’t enjoy any of the same things, is the same retarded line of antiquated, ethno-centric thinking that the internet is supposed to destroy. Blah.

Blah, indeed!

Nothing like some old fashioned, take an existing product, wrap it in Kente cloth and try to sell it to me scheme! Haven’t seen one of those in a while. Just dip the white Barbie in brown paint. No one will even know the difference!

But as long as we’re “colorizing” products that are colorless, here are some other product suggestions that could use some blackening up!

  • Feminine Hygiene products — Black women shouldn’t have to use products with such Westernized names. Fuck Summer’s Eve. Give me Africa’s Dawn! I want to smell like the MOTHERLAND every 28 days!

  • Fabric Softener — because Downy is a sell-out softener. Bounce, not as bad, but still kind of supporting the white patriarchy. What about Homey the Fabric Softener? It would have Damon Wayon’s face on it. The commercials he could beat the softness into your clothes with that dirty black sock from the old “In Living Color” comedy bit. I’d bet he’d do it for cheap too.

  • Baby food — Gerber almost never has a Negro baby on that bottle. Besides, there’s no turnip greens, pig’s feet or sweet potato flavored baby food. I don’t want my baby eating no mashed peas unless it’s mashed black-eye peas!

  • Condoms — Black! For her pleasure! Wait. Do “Rough Riders” count as “black” condoms?

  • Cable TV Packages — There are too many “white” channels on my basic cable. Where’s my special “black package” that comes with nothing but 10 different flavors of BET, VH-1, MTV, ESPN, TV One, CNN, TNT and HBO? And it should have a special version of TV Land that shows nothing but The Jeffersons, Good Times and Sanford & Son. And don’t forget my BET Starz where I can watch all 15 versions of Trois, including Trois Goes to the Inauguration: Welcome to The Freaknik of Hope, starring Tyrin Turner and Jill Marie Jones, featuring Wesley Snipes in his BET Starz original film debut as “Rob Johnston,” billionaire owner of the Black Broadcasting Network who gives Turner and Henson an “indecent proposal” after getting “four thumbs down” from the President-elect and Mrs. Obama.

  • Pain killers — for those racially tinged headaches you get when your co-workers won’t stop touching your hair!

  • Handguns — they could come with rapper’s endorsements. 50 Cent brand 9MMs. They could come in different colors to match your outfits. Special grips so they stay secure to your sweat pants if you’re a certain nightclub hopping, shoot-yourself-in-the-leg football star. They could come bedazzled in diamonds and rhinestones. More bling for your bang! They would practically sell themselves!

  • Alcohol — Wait … never mind. Ripple, anyone?

25 thoughts on “Black, For Your Displeasure: Blackbird, the Negro-Pandering Internet Browser

  1. You made me fall out of my chair…literally. But for real, Latinos do get their special cable package….wtf? (Personally, I would rather pay a la carte for the channels I actually watch)

  2. “…all 15 versions of Trois, including Trois Goes to the Inauguration: Welcome to The Freaknik of Hope, starring Tyrin Turner and Jill Marie Jones, featuring Wesley Snipes…”Here lies glory. Dead from laughing too hard.

  3. They actually do have Sweet Potato flavored baby food. My daughter loves it.I could pass on a black package of television stations. Singers and rappers dont need any more encouragement to act.But this piece was funny as all heck. I guess Blackbird is kinda like AOL’s BlackVoices. Where black folks can read about other black floks in the news. (Shrugs)

  4. serafina: See, but AOL Black Voices is an actual site. Blackbird is a friggin’ Web Browser. Like Safari or Internet Explorer or Netscape or AOL or Firefox (and it’s based on the same software as Firefox). There is nothing about it that makes it any different from any other Web browser other than how it looks and the already keyed in bookmarks. Heck, it’s actually WORSE in some respects, as it only supports MySpace and Facebook, not any of the 1001 other social networking site, so if you like Bebo don’t bother downloading Blackbird.And since Blackbird is almost identical to Firefox it really makes no sense to use it. I use Firefox. Why would I want to use a crappier version of Firefox? IT IS MIND NUMBING. A Web browser is not a “lifestyle” choice. It’s about download speed and avoiding viruses. Geez Louise.Which is why I had to make fun of it. It is a BEYOND DUMB idea.

  5. OMG I’m loving it, Africa’s Dawn, I want to smell like the motherland every 28 days.I nearly died laughing lol. Brilliant, absolutely

  6. it is funny but I wonder how did the founders — Arnold Brown II, Frank Washington, and H. Edward Young, Jr. —convince someone to fund something that seems so unnecessary.Imagine if they put their brainpower behind prospecting for funding for something that’s actually needed.That’s the person I want to hear from — the person who wrote the check maybe they could fund some TV show ideas I have!

  7. the story is hilarious (esp. Africa’s Dawn – that’s the prize right there)btw – as one of only two blacks left in operations, if my job asks me to test the browser for ad compatability i’m quitting!

  8. Wow, we get a news channel with the “Black Package”. Oh, it’s CNN – home of your man TJ.I think that this is the issue Ed at has with “Black” internet sites. Why focus on 13% instead of 100% of the total market?

  9. This post is dead on as usual, Snob. Love the last several posts (thank goodness we’re done with Mariah/Nick Cannon; although I will say that MC does look very happy….)

  10. I really don’t think the whole Blackbird thing is this serious. Using Blackbird may easily give someone the opportunity of viewing websites that are of black interest(i.e. the root). I don’t think that’s marginalizing us any, but simply giving us the option to view web sites that may be of interest to us.

  11. Hey Snob,I came across this article when I Googled “google toolbar blackbird.” I’m actually using Blackbird right now as I type and it’s wack. I mean, it’s actually a Firefox browser but minus my fave add-ons (e.g., auto-fill, Google toolbar, etc.). Without my add-ons, what is the point?At first glance, it’s a “Blackened” Firefox but once you peruse it, it leaves one wanting to uninstall it. Hated it.

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