There is an important change to AP style with regard to the capitalization of Black and Indigenous.
From now on, capitalize Black in a racial, ethnic or cultural sense. This conveys an essential and shared sense of history, identity and community among people who identify as Black, including those in the African diaspora and within Africa. The lowercase black refers to a color, not a person.
Also, capitalize Indigenous in reference to original inhabitants of a place.
These two changes align with long-standing capitalization of other racial and ethnic identifiers, such as Latino, Asian American and Native American.
The updates become part of the AP Stylebook’s race-related coverage guidance, which begins:
“Avoid broad generalizations and labels; race and ethnicity are one part of a person’s identity. Identifying people by race and reporting on actions that have to do with race often go beyond simple style questions, challenging journalists to think broadly about racial issues before having to make decisions on specific situations and stories.
“In all coverage — not just race-related coverage — strive to accurately represent the world, or a particular community, and its diversity through the people you quote and depict in all formats. Omissions and lack of inclusion can render people invisible and cause anguish.”
Missouri State has a limited membership to the online AP Stylebook. More information on each of these entries is available in the online guide. If you create content for the university, contact Andrea Mostyn to request access.