country. Also, using your RealAudio device, you can link to radio broadcasts from the Kenya Broadcasting Corp. A component for children, called Kids Only, offers interactive quizzes, games, a Kenyan children’s magazine and intercontinental chat. Both sites are dean, crisp and designed for easy navigation.
To cover the entire African Diaspora, click on to The Black World Today, an online publication that covers issues involving the international black community, including Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean and the U.S. Daily sections include the latest news and sports, guest columns from prominent lecturers and in-depth articles. You’ll also find profiles on black countries, and links to other sites of related interest.
Melanet: The UnCut Black Experience is another seasoned online pioneer with much to offer. This deep, rich site combines commerce and culture, and walks a fine line between being progressive and capitalist. You can research businesses, plan an African wedding or buy books with African American themes. The UnCut Chat series features live talk with prominent guests on provocative issues.
Don’t let the name fool you. guppies Online is a serious source of information aimed at everyone, not just Black Urban Professionals. Its stated mission is to bring “Black America Together in Cyberspace.” The site’s layout maneuvers you through a range of topics, involving politics, art and entertainment, computing, family life, finances and education.
A ’90S KIND OF PARTY LINE
“When I was young, I just wanted to blow up stuff,” recalls Sinbad, a former high school chemistry buff and would-be inventor. Truly one of the early adopters of the Internet, Sinbad got his first computer in 1986 and went online shortly after, when CompuServe and bulletin board systems were the only things of note. “I didn’t go online right away because it’s like a drug,” quips the comedian and host of Vibe, the late-night television talk show. “[The Net] will take people away and their families will never see them again because they’re so engrossed.”
All jokes aside, Sinbad, who taught himself both Java and HTML (Internet programming languages), encourages everyone to get online. “It’s like the ’90s equivalent of the party line,” he says. The informational aspect is what he enjoys most about the Web, although he also recognizes the Net’s more commercial uses. He has a Web site for his Soul Music Festival and is the driving force behind the site for Vibe TV.
This year, he’s planning to use the soul music site as more than a marketing tool. “I’m going to hook up a T1 line in the Caribbean so we can use the Internet to get around the outrageous long-distance rates,” says Sinbad, who has plans to create the ultimate black online community. “It’ll be called something like Sinbad’s Funky World and it will be like the one-stop-shop for blacks in cyberspace.”
E NET’S EN VOGUE
EN VOGUE’S Terry Ellis has been giving her public something they can use, a little Terry Ellis Southern Exposure, thee name that adorns both her new fragrance and the Web site she has created to