Sharing the stories of community media makers in Philadelphia

Doctoral candidate Antoine Haywood is documenting the work and lives of Black, Indigenous, and people of color media makers in Philadelphia.

Antoine Haywood fell in love with public access media the day he walked into the studios of People TV, the public access television channel in Atlanta, Georgia.

“I came in and was just totally swept away,” he says. “It was really about seeing other Black people in a space, in a community media center, making content and working collaboratively.”

A grid of six people taking part in the Telling Our Stories project.
Portraits from the “Telling Our Stories” project. (Image: Kyle Cassidy/courtesy of the Annenberg School for Communication)

Haywood, now a doctoral candidate at the Annenberg School for Communication, hasn’t lost his enthusiasm for public access media over the two decades that have passed since he first entered the now-defunct People TV.

As part of his dissertation research, he is recording the stories of Black, Indigenous, and people of color media makers at Philadelphia Community Access Media (PhillyCAM), where he directed community engagement programs for eight years.

His project, “Telling Our Stories: A Multimodal Philadelphia Community Media Storytelling Project,” informed by an advisory committee of PhillyCAM members, pairs portraits taken by Annenberg digital design specialist Kyle Cassidy with oral histories recorded by Haywood and his research assistants, Karen Walker and Maya Winneg.

This story is by Hailey Reissman. Read more at the Annenberg School for Communication.