Last summer, the actor and comedian Milton “Lil Rel” Howery grabbed his phone and scrolled through Twitter. An ad for the Black-owned streaming service KweliTV stopped him.
Enamored of the premise of a Black-owned media company, Howery downloaded the app and binge-watched indie shorts and feature films for two days. He reached out to KweliTV through a direct Twitter message, and DeShuna Spencer, KweliTV’s founder, responded.
Founded in 2017, KweliTV has over 40,000 subscribers and offers over 500 films and shorts from independent Black creators, including dramas and documentaries. After several conversations with Spencer about the state of Black media and new techniques for content creation, Howery became the head of comedy at KweliTV in October.