An all white Oscars will be a thing of the past…
The fact the lack of ethnicity has received more media attention and conversations this year than the previous, could be seen as a step, but steps don’t sit on shelves and validate successes, so I guess nobody wants to hear that. Last weeks news that not a single actor or actress of ethnicity, received a nomination at this years Oscars, leaves me feeling impatiently frustrated and with an urge to want to do something. Especially seen as both ‘Beast of no Nation’ and ‘Straight Outta Compton’ moved me to tears (and I can’t be the only one) through the great acting of black actors! The urge in this case however, is slowly washed over by thoughts of my own insignificance.
To be honest, my insignificance may be true in terms of single handily changing this weeks shiny pinnacle of success for actors and actresses. However, as I give it a second thought here at work, I don’t feel discouraged. This is my third week as part of Digify at Livity. Working with everyone here, as well as the senior level professionals from companies such as Google (ever heard of them?) and the Marketing Agencies Association (they’re amazing), I don’t feel frustrated in the slightest. In fact I feel very, very, excited and motivated! To us Digifier’s it’s obvious; diversity allows for the very best creative work to be produced, as through it, you gain an increased amount of varying cultural values, attitudes and life experiences. Which will reflect in audience reach and engagement.
To be around so many people who know this isn’t rocket science is motivating. To see the need for a more diverse creative industry pushed naturally from a business perspective and not only one of equality, is refreshing. So there are a lot of things rapidly changing, and from being here I see that those part of it and around it are loving the success. This can get clouded while I read the news of the Oscars, but it’s also the reason why I believe it’s gained particularly more media attention this year in the UK.
Being here everyday, working with the other Digifier’s, doesn’t make me feel worried or anxious at all about un-diverse workplaces or absence of recognition for future creative work. It’s no Oscars, but it allows me to see more clearly than ever before that things are happily shifting in the creative industries, and inspires me to pass it on, wait and watch, honestly I don’t think its too long before it reaches the deciding board of the Oscars too.
An all white Oscars will be a thing of the past.
Hannah Owens, Digifier, 26.01.16