By Ismael AbduSalaam
After announcing in 2008 the creation of Better Black Television (BBTV), entrepreneur P.Miller has been hard at work getting the fledgling network off the ground.
As chairman and CEO, Miller has promised to debut a network the covers the full spectrum of the African-American experience in news, politics, movies, teen/children’s educational programming, animation, and sports.
When asked whether BBTV was a response to the complaints leveled at networks such as BET, Miller explained that his project is more so about creating a new, distinct message.
“I don’t think it’s a response, but it fills a void,” Miller told AllHipHop.com. “You look at The Cosby Show and that was funny and entertaining but also educational and uplifting. It sent a message that probably sparked a lot of black doctors and lawyers now. That’s what I want to offer with BBTV. It’s going to show people where the future is going because a lot of us don’t want to die gangbangers in the hood. Some of us do want to get older and be around to raise their kids.”
Creating a new network is a slow, meticulous process that Miller has spent the last 8 years refining. During that span, the New Orleans mogul studied the industry and made the necessary alliances to move his vision forward.
Today, the advisory board for BBTV includes Oscar winner Denzel Washington, NAACP executive director Vicangelo Bullock, Hip-Hop founder Kool Herc, cable industry veteran Professor Sal Martino, and real estate mogul Curtis Oakes.
Now, Miller details his biggest challenge is formulating programming devoid of stereotypes, particularly in the representation of Hip-Hop culture.
“[The biggest challenge is] to be able to make a diverse product and knowing that you need something that the churches and other cultures can feel good about so you don’t just stereotype your product to where it’s just all African Americans,” Miller stated. “To me, Hip-Hop is all cultures now, but it’s also being able to service the corporations and make good shows that sponsors want to be involved in. At the same time, I want to make stuff that the Hip-Hop culture feels proud about and doesn’t feel like it’s selling out.”
At press time, P.Miller has set BBTV to launch in 2010. For more information, viewers can visit http://betterblacktv.com.