Having been on the internet almost since there was an internet, I’ve noticed something. In the beginning, since most people on the internet were very technology focused, and culture was more a personal thing, most cultural sites, African and diaspora included, were built by people belonging to that culture. In the old days of Angelfire and Geocities, the top results on most cultural topics would lead you to a free site maybe with a couple of ads at most, made by someone who was personally involved with the topic.
Things have changed now. Though it can be seen as some improvement that there is more information available from mainstream and academic sources, this “information” is often colonially biased and/or behind a paywall or registration. Sometimes it contains code that, while not malware, is of concern to people who may need to guard their privacy due to safety and other concerns.
It has become difficult to find resources on African and diaspora culture, customs, history, and even recipes, that is written by Africans and diasporans. So I have thought of some ways to solve this. Feel free to use any of this to help your site gain the visibility it needs.
Keywords, Tags, and Hashtags
Though keywords in headers are rarely considered anymore, actual content on the actual page is. Tags and hashtags are also considered in widely used CMS (content management systems) and social media platforms. We can use unique terms that others wouldn’t for any good reason, to bring people looking for us to us. Any other culture can use this tactic as well, but I am owning my bias in confessing that for me, this is mostly about African and diaspora cultures.
So I am thinking that instead of using separate words, we can combine certain things into one word. Here are some examples using about/by:
You get where I’m going.
One could also go with:
or even things like #vodunbyvodunsi or #afrolatinkindokibybruja
Make these kinds of keywords and hashtags and use these kinds of keywords and hashtags when you are looking for things. When using a search engine, use these compound terms to find resources, and worst case, put them in quotations so they will be a necessary part of the content.
It increases the relevance of a term if there are images associated with it. Some searches now also have an image search that will sniff out similar images, so if you don’t find what you need in the general search, you may find something in images.
Here I have some very simple, small ones you can use.
I would appreciate a link back for this, but feel free to associate the image with a link on your own site. You can link to us on your links page or wherever else it would be appropriate.
Blessings and Ashé!