Tech developer launches 'Ojibwe Netflix'

Darrick Baxter calls his newest project the "Ojibwe Netflix."

"It started out as a joke," he said. "But when you tell someone that it's the Ojibwe Netflix, they automatically grasp it."

Baxter runs Winnipeg, Manitoba-based Ogoki Learning, a company that builds language learning apps for tribal dialects. He and his team have made roughly 130 apps for different tribes across Canada and the United States.

The new "Ojibway TV" app is the first ever video streaming service for indigenous Ojibwe speakers. (The app uses an alternative spelling of Ojibwe.) It's available now on Apple TV and Apple's app store.

To keep an indigenous language vital, it has to be passed on to young people, Baxter said, and right now, that requires streaming video.

"Young people want to consume that content," he said. "My 13-year-old son is more likely to recognize someone from Netflix, let's say 'Stranger Things,' than a regular TV star."

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But while actual Netflix streams 100 million hours of content per day, the fledgling Ojibwe TV app has just 45 episodes right now.

There aren't many people making content for Ojibwe speakers — Baxter had to get creative.

"We contact Ojibwe speaking YouTubers," he said, "and ask them, 'can we use your content for this streaming network' Most of them say yes. Some of them are making content just for us."

Baxter and his team are also producing a cartoon in-house. He hopes to grow the platform dramatically over the next few months.