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MTV Broadcasting in Black and White for First Time as Part of Anti-Bias Effort The Talk [Video]

MTV today is kicking off an expansion of its Look Different anti-bias campaign titled The Talk by broadcasting today in black and white.

The 12-hour, multi-platform effort, being launched at 9 a.m. EST today, is to encourage its audience to have candid, confident and color brave conversations on race with family and friends, MTV announced.

Common is among the luminaries taking part in MTV’s The Talk anti-bias effort today. (Photo: Getty Images)
“Millennials believe strongly in fairness, but they can also find it difficult to talk openly about race -– to be not simply ‘color blind’ but ‘color brave,’” said Stephen Friedman, MTV president, in a statement. “Our audience is looking for a way to bring the national conversation on race into their homes and this campaign will give them a forum to express true color bravery.”

The Talk begins this morning for the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day and kicks off a 12-hour period in which all programming will air in black and white for the first time in the network’s history.

Every commercial block will begin with personal reflections on race from luminaries including Kendrick Lamar, Common, Big Sean, Ava DuVernay, David Oyelowo, Penn Badgley, Jordin Sparks, Pete Wentz, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, U.S. Rep. John Lewis, Sen. Cory Booker and more.

On-air creative on MTV, MTV2, mtvU, MTV Hits, MTV Jams and a comprehensive push across MTV’s online, mobile and social platforms will encourage audience members to share their own reflections using the #thetalk and get involved through the Look Different website.

MTV’s Look Different campaign launched in April 2014, and is shaped by the network’s research and insights on young people and race, gender and sexual orientation. According to a 2014 MTV study, many millennials were raised to believe they shouldn’t acknowledge racial differences; with 84 percent saying their family taught them that everyone should be treated the same, regardless of race.

It is the first time MTV has broadcast in black and white ever, having debuted Aug. 1, 1981, in New York.

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