The 21 Biggest #BlackTwitter Moments Of 2013
This was a huuuuge year for # Here are some of the biggest moments, in no particular order. BlackTwitter.
The Evisceration of Paula Deen
AP Photo / NBC, Peter Kramer
The Schooling of Don Lemon
The Onion Apologizes
Maury Phillips / Getty Images for Variety
The internet nearly collapsed under its own weight on the night of the Oscars, when the satirical website
referred to then 9-year-old actress Quvenzhané Wallis as a "c*nt" The Onion in a tweet during the show. Online outrage was swift and severe enough to move The Onion to apologize, which nearly never happens.
Miley Cyrus: Twerkgate 2013
Lucas Jackson / Reuters / Reuters
Miley Cyrus' half dressed, gyrating performance at the MTV Video Music Awards sparked an exhaustive but important and often wildly entertaining conversation about twerking, double standards, and cultural appropriation across Twitter that is still going on today. #BlackTwitter lashed out satirically with hashtags like #
ThanksMiley, started when the media credited her with inspiring Beyoncé's pixie cut, and # ABCReports, which lampooned ABC's "scientific" investigation into twerking. Those two hashtags alone spawned over 156,000 tweets this year.
Scandal Takes Over Twitter
This one definitely spans beyond the realm of #BlackTwitter, as
Scandal has a very diverse fan base, but a huge portion of live-tweeting Scandal fans are black, and this season saw the show's online influence surge. Each episode generates hundreds of thousands of tweets. During the season 3 premier, for example, fans tweeted over 700,000 times, generating over 34 million impressions. That is huge.
Racism is over! Did you get t
he memo? Neither did the people of Twitter, who were very surprised to hear of its demise. The above tweet sparked the trending topic #RacismEndedWhen, created by @ FeministaJones. The hashtag was tweeted 38,000 times, and included some completely hilarious tweets and pictures.
BuzzFeed Goes Black
When BuzzFeed's hiring of sports writer Joel Anderson got Twitter talking about the increase in black staffers, #
BlackBuzzFeed was born. The first tweets were sent by @ desusnice and @ frazierapproves, and some 50,000 tweets later, the rest is hilarious history.
Solidarity is for White Women
When controversial "feminist" Hugo Schwyzer had a
very public meltdown on Twitter, a byproduct was a hugely important conversation on prejudice and privilege within the world of feminism, tagged with #solidarityisforwhitewomen. Started by writer Mikki Kendall, the conversation was sparked by what many black women felt was the dismissing of their issues by white women coming to Schwyzer's defense. 87,000 tweets were sent within the trending topic.
All Black People Look Alike to Armani
The above picture of Alfre Woodward was posted to Armani's Instagram account, initially with the caption: "
Idris Elba posing in a gorgeous Giorgio Armani dress at the 5th annual Governors Awards." They eventually corrected the caption, but not until Twitter got wind of it and sent over 14,000 tweets lampooning the slip up with the hashtag # ArmaniCaptions.
Kanye's "New Slaves" Takes Over Twitter
Hunter Schwartz / BuzzFeed / Via
Kanye West released the video for his single "New Slaves" in the most Kanye way possible — projected
onto the sides of 66 buildings worldwide. It was a pretty genius move that definitely got people talking, considering the premier generated an astounding 500,000 tweets. The album Yeezus has seen a pretty big year on Twitter overall, totaling 4.4 million tweets.
Jay-Z's Surprise Q&A
Those Knowles-Carters sure do like surprising people, huh? Months before his wife surprised the world with a brand new album, Jay-Z surprised Twitter with a
random Q&A session in the week following the release of his album Magna Carta Holy Grail. During the Q&A, in which he responded to about 100 fans, he gained 46,000 new Twitter followers, and two hashtags that he used, #mylaugh and #factsonly, became national trending topics.
The Passing of Nelson Mandela
Benoit Tessier / Reuters
When legendary South African president Nelson Mandela
passed away at the age of 95, the internet exploded with messages of grief and gratitude. When the news broke, a total of 7.2 million tweets about his passing were sent, peaking at 95,000 tweets per minute. Twitter also had a big moment when pictures surfaced of President Obama taking a selfie at Mandela's memorial service.
R. Kelly's Social Media Nightmare
Lucas Jackson / Reuters
Apparently R. Kelly forgot that not everyone has forgotten about his transgressions. When the embattled singer
invited everyone to ask him questions on Twitter, there's no way he could have expected what he got: scores of questions about the child pornography charges he faced (and was acquitted of) in 2008. Though there were 35,000 tweets tagged with #AskRKelly, he answered very few of them. Perhaps the harshest burn of all:
TMZ Tries to Kill Lil Wayne
Ethan Miller / Getty Images
TMZ had all but posted Lil Wayne's time of death back in March, when they
made multiple reports that the rapper was on his death bed, being read his last rites, and heading towards the stairway to heaven. Lil Wayne soon tweeted to all his concerned fans that he was fine, but not before the hashtags #PrayForLilWayne, #PrayForWayne, and #PrayForWeezie trended, totaling 101,000 tweets.
The Zimmerman Trial and Juror B37
Pool New / Reuters / Reuters
The murder trial of George Zimmerman, charged with killing unarmed black teen Trayvon Martin, captivated the attention of people worldwide. Many watched in horror as Zimmerman was acquitted of any wrongdoing, tweeting through feelings of frustration, sorrow, and helplessness. Some decided that they weren't completely helpless, however, when a juror made plans to profit from the case via a book deal. Spearheaded by
Genie Lauren, Twitter users successfully pressed for the dropping of the juror's book deal.
TMZ's Boston Bombing Fail
This was definitely the year of Beyoncé. Everything she did blew up, from
cutting her hair to lip syncing at the presidential inauguration (and subsequently holding a press conference to sing the song live and encourage everyone to shut up about it) to performing at the Super Bowl (which generated 5.5 million tweets) to releasing an entire album with 14 new songs and 17 new video in complete secret. When Beyoncé dropped her album, there were 1.2 million tweets in the first 12 hours alone (fun fact: the 5 most tweeted about songs so far are "Blue," "Mine," "Drunk In Love", "Flawless," and "Partition"). Scientifically, we can estimate that 2013 has seen approximately 19 grillion Beyoncé tweets, and there's still time for at least a grillion more.
Many thanks to @
Shavone of Twitter for compiling this amazing data!