Viacom’s brands, which reach across the demographic spectrum to deliver content to the widest possible audience, have long been known for championing diverse causes and points of view. Some of MTV’s most popular shows highlight characters with a wide range of sexual orientations. Logo’s RuPaul’s Drag Race has been at the forefront of a nationwide conversation on transgender rights. And behind the cameras, Viacom is focused on giving women and minorities a fair chance at director roles, with BET claiming the top three spots on the Directors Guild of Americas latest annual diversity study.
BET and Nickelodeon further demonstrated Viacom’s commitment to diversity when the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications named the two networks as winners of a total of four 2016 NAMIC Vision Awards. The awards honor original programming that “is reflective of the depth and breadth of the lives, spirit and contributions of people of color,” according to NAMIC’s website.
Nickelodeon’s Talia in the Kitchen, a lighthearted telenovela-style teen sitcom about a 14-year-old who fixes up her family’s restaurant with magical spices, took the Children’s category.
So powerfully representative was BET’s programming that the network brought in three awards: Being Mary Jane in the Drama category; Katrina 10 Years later: Through Hell and High Water in the News/Information category; and Book of Negroes in the Original Movie or Special category.