You’re a reporter on deadline. You need a quote or a source quickly, and he or she needs to be responsive, media-savvy, and an expert. You don’t have time to cultivate new relationships or start from square one. Who do you call?
The United States is home to approximately 8.5 million Muslim, Arab, North African, Persian, and South Asian Americans. So where are they in the news? A 2017 Media Matters report on broadcast news guests for the duration of the first Muslim ban showed that a majority of experts and speakers brought onto shows at MSNBC, CNN, and Fox News were not in fact representative of actual Muslim communities.
The 8.5 Million project provides a solution. 8.5 Million is an online database of subject experts from Muslim, Arab, and South Asian American communities, as well as from the allied communities that regularly speak out for civil rights, including freedom of religion and freedom of speech. These speakers are experts on a broad range of issues beyond just Islam, Muslims, or nations of origin. They are experts in subjects as varied as national security, healthcare, domestic violence, and pop culture. There are Republicans, Democrats, and apolitical spokespeople from all over the country and every major media market. They are also all media-trained, ready for your call. This resource seeks to provide an easily accessible Rolodex of speakers to journalists, producers, and bookers, seeking authentic narratives from diverse voices. If you want access to any speaker, reach out to ReThink Media, or log in to access their email address and phone number directly.