An Open Letter On Proper Madame Noire Etiquette: Since Some Of Yall Don’t Know How To Act

December 18, 2012  |  


Remember in elementary school when a handful of students acted a fool, the whole class was punished as a consequence? I can’t even count the amount of recess time I lost because someone else was misbehaving. Well, this piece is written in that same spirit. For the most part, you, our beloved readers, are polite, thoughtful or hilarious in your responses and respectful of the work we do for you each day. We can’t adequately express what it means to know that thousands of you choose Madame Noire, over every other site on the internet to learn about the latest news, discuss lifestyle topics, or enjoy a hilarious article about or concerning black women. We sincerely appreciate you.

We know you have expectations for our site. You want our facts to be correct, to read content free of spelling and grammatical errors. You want to be considered in the stories, videos and  other projects we decide to pursue. We know this and surely appreciate those of you who politely let us know when you feel we are not living up to those expectations.  This piece is really not for you. Though you are more than welcome to continue reading, you are the children who’ve behaved well all school year.

This piece is for those who may need just a friendly reminder about who we, Madame Noire, are, what we’d like for you to know about the work we do and what we expect from you, our readers.

Things We’d Like For You To Know

Those Annoying Slideshows
Trust us, we read the e-mails, the Facebook posts, the comments on the site and the tweets, asking us what the hell is going on with all the clickity, click clicking. Unfortunately, at this time, and probably for a long time to come, the slideshows are here to stay. As troublesome as you may find them, they are always, and I do mean always, our most read, best performing stories. They keep you on the site longer, they increase our page views and most importantly let advertisers know that people are actually coming to and staying on our site, long enough to see whatever message they may want to share with you. As obnoxious as that may be, the ads make sure that the editorial staff and other writers can get paid and also that our readers won’t have to pay for MN’s content. If that still doesn’t do it for you, please know that slideshows are not easy for us to prepare either. It literally takes hours to upload photos, write copy, edit and promote a single slideshow. They’re not exactly a walk in the park for us either; but they’re a necessity and we know, from the numbers, that quite a few people learn something or enjoy reading them.

Madame Noire is not one person
For some reason, quite a few people are under the impression that Madame Noire is one woman. Madame Noire means “black woman” so all of our black, female readers, are Madame Noire. She is every black woman. If you’ve checked our “About Us” page, you’ll see that Madame Noire’s editorial staff  is composed of five women and we currently have two interns. With that being said, please keep in mind that all the content you see everyday on the site as well as the posts you see on Facebook and Twitter is either written or edited by one of these five women. With an average of almost 30 stories published a day, not counting the stories published on our Business Page, that’s a lot of work for just five people. It’s work we enjoy doing; but it’s not easy and when things aren’t perfect, or to your liking, it may take us some time to address those valid concerns.

Caps Lock is offensive
Some of you may have missed this internet etiquette lesson; but as a rule of thumb, typing in Caps Lock is the equivalent of shouting in person. It’s offensive and a bit uncalled for if you don’t have a personal vendetta against us. Not only that, it’s incredibly hard to read and if you type that way on our Facebook page, Facebook will assume it’s spam and will hide the comment from view.

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