Frequently Asked Questions
How do I download Blackbird?
After clicking "Download Blackbird" you will be asked to enter the numbers and/or letters you see on the screen and will then be able to download the Blackbird browser. Check the system requirements to make sure you have the right computer to use Blackbird (currently Blackbird does not support the Mac platform). After you have clicked "Download", you will see a dialog box asking if you would like to "Save" the application or "Open" it. Choose the "Open" option and Blackbird will then install itself and the Blackbird icon will appear on your desktop. Run the Blackbird Browser application like any other Windows application. If you are unable to run the application after clicking on "Open" from the dialog box, try "Saving" the download (please remember the location where you save the Blackbird installation file) and then double-click the saved Blackbird installation file and install as instructed.
Why isn't Blackbird working on my computer?
Blackbird supports Windows and Mac platform. Blackbird doesn't support Linux-based computers yet. If you are having trouble installing Blackbird on a Mac or Windows PC, please email us at support[at]blackbirdhome.com.
Can Blackbird remember and form-fill my passwords on the websites I use?
Yes, Blackbird does this for you by default. To turn off this feature select "Tools" from main menu, then "Options", then "Security." In the "Security" tab de-select the preference to fill in passwords. This will turn off this feature.
How do I Sign In to the Blackbird Community?
To Share webpages and articles you will need to Sign Up for the Blackbird Community. Once you Sign Up for the Blackbird Community you will be asked to Sign In before Sharing articles or webpages or if you Vote Up a webpage or article in Blackbird Grapevine. The idea is that the Blackbird Community shares webpages and articles by submitting them into categories. Then members of the Blackbird Community can Vote Up these webpages and articles. The top webpages and articles are displayed in Most Shared (a button on the Blackbird Browser). This is commonly called social bookmarking. Blackbird intends to support other social bookmarking services. Blackbird also has created its own social bookmarking service called Blackbird Grapevine.
Why do I want to Sign Up for the Blackbird Community?
The reason to Sign Up for the Blackbird Community is to experience community related features. Blackbird is going to release new community features overtime. The first community featue is Blackbird Grapevine - a social bookmarking service. The idea is that the Blackbird Community shares webpages and articles by submitting them into categories. Then members of the Blackbird Community can Vote Up these webpages and articles. The top webpages and articles are displayed in Most Shared (a button on the Blackbird Browser). To Share webpages and articles you will need to Sign Up for the Blackbird Community.
Do I need to sign in and out every time I use the Blackbird browser?
You only need to sign in to Blackbird to access certain Blackbird community features, such as the "Share" feature that allows you to post articles to Blackbird Grapevine(our version on social bookmarking). Once you have signed in to access one of these features, you do not need to sign in again to access another. You will remain signed in until you choose to sign out.
Can I change the appearance of Blackbird and choose which features I want displayed?
Much like other browsers you can change which toolbars are displayed and which are not. For example, if you prefer to not see the Blackbird News scroll across your screen you can turn off the News Ticker by either clicking the "off" button on the Services toolbar, or by selecting "View" from the main menu, then "Toolbars," then de-selecting the News Ticker. Other toolbars can be turned on and off, however, the "Services" toolbar cannot be removed because it contains controls for other functions of the browser. Lastly, Blackbird will be able to be skin-ed in the near future. Blackbird will allow users to create skins that change the appearance of Blackbird -- but this is only a coming attraction for now.
Which email providers does the Blackbird Email feature support?
Blackbird currently supports the top webmail services: Yahoo, Gmail, and Hotmail. Blackbird does not support POP3 email accounts or other ISP-based email providers. You may choose to direct emails from your unsupported accounts to one of the supported webmail services so that you can view all your mail via Blackbird.
How do I set up my email in Blackbird?
To set up your email in Blackbird, click the "Email" button, then select "Register an Email Account", then a dialog box will pop up. Enter your username and password for your accounts. Blackbird will remember that information so you do not need to enter it again. Note that the Blackbird Browser securely stores your information only on your computer, with the same mechanism used to store and retrieve your passwords normally used in Mozilla-based browsers. To check your email, you may select your email from the drop down menu or click on the "Email" button to open your email in the main browser window. You will receive an alert signal when you have new mail. Choose Email Preferences from the Tools/Options menu to change your alerts and other email preferences.
Will Blackbird alert me when I have New Mail?
You will receive an alert signal when you have new mail. The alert will appear as though the Email button is glowing. In addition, Email alerts sounds can be selected from the Email Preferences screen. Choose Email Preferences from the Tools/Options menu to change your alerts and other email preferences.
Which social networks can I use with the Blackbird Browser?
Blackbird currently supports Facebook and MySpace. Other social networks will be available soon. You can enter your information for both Facebook and MySpace and then switch between the two by clicking on the "Social Networks" button on the Blackbird services toolbar and selecting the social network you want from the drop down menu. You can then open that social network in the sidebar of the Blackbird Browser. Each social network requires you that sign in directly on its sign in page. Users are subject to the usage terms and conditions of any particular social network or other serivces accesible from the Blackbird Browser.
How do I access my social network account within Blackbird?
After clicking the Social Networks button, you will need to enter your user name (remember this is not always an email address) and password. Your status, some account information and friends will appear in the Blackbird sidebar. Your current network icon will appear in the Social Networks button until you choose to switch to another network by choosing Switch in the Social Networks pull-down menu.
How is Black Search different?
Black search prioritizes sites that focus on African-American content and information enabling you to find content that is typically buried in most search engines. Typical users only look at the first page of search results and this is why Black Search is so important to discover and experience African-American content. Black Search utilizes the Google CSE technology.
Do I have to use only Black Search while using Blackbird?
No. You can search using another search engine by clicking the drop down arrow in the search box of the Blackbird Browser and then selecting one of the other search engines, including Google and Yahoo search, or adding another search engine from another website. Many large websites have their own search functions that you can add by clicking on the same drop down arrow when the Blackbird Browser is in discover mode. The drop down arrow will glow when Blackbird is in discover mode.
How often is the News Ticker updated?
The News Ticker is updated every 15 minutes. The News Ticker contains news from a variety of sources from around the Internet. The content of such news feed is the sole responsibility of the news source provider. To change the News Ticker options select "Tools/Options" from the main menu and then select news ticker.
Can I turn off the News Ticker?
Yes. Click on the "View/Toolbar" menu and choose "Turn Off News Ticker". Also, you can turn off the News Ticker from the Blackbird Services toolbar by selecting the "off" button on the far right end of the Services toolbar. To turn the News Ticker on, follow the same procedure.
Where did the News Ticker go?
You may have inadvertently turned off the News Ticker. Click on the "View/Toolbar" menu or click the "on" link adjacent to the News Ticker symbol on the Blackbird Services toolbar to turn on the scrolling News Ticker.
Can I add my own news feed to the scrolling News Ticker?
Yes. To add your own news feed you will need to subscribe to an RSS feed. Once you have subscribed to an RSS feed you will need to go to "Tools/Options/News Ticker" preferences and highlight the news feed you wish to add to the scrolling News Ticker, and then click the "Add" button.
How do I access Blackbird Video channels?
To access BlackbirdTV you will need to click on the "Video" link on the Blackbird Services Toolbar. Once you click on the Video button the sidebar opens up with BlackbirdTV channels. Click on the channel name to display videos within that channel. Click on a video view it on the video player page. Also, the main page of BlackbirdTV opens in the main Blackbird Browser window. You can only view BlackbirdTV in the Blackbird Browser. If you are offline you will not be able to access the video channels in the sidebar of BlackbirdTV and will not be able to playback a video.Channel options appear in the sidebar. When you choose a channel, it will appear as a New Tab and you can choose from the videos displayed for that channel. By clicking on the Channel Name from any video detail page you will be taken to a page that displays all content from the channel.
How can I share an article with the Blackbird Community? Can I add a comment?
To share a webpage or article with the Blackbird Community (a service we call Blackbird Grapevine) you must Sign In to the Blackbird Community. Once you sign in, click the "Share" button on the Blackbird Services toolbar, which will open the Share dialog box on your screen. Fill out the "Description" of the article/webpage. This is your opportunity to add your opinion about the topic. Don't be shy. Add any other information you wish to include in your listing. Then click submit to share the article with the Blackbird Grapevine.
How do I vote on articles? Can I add to the comments?
Click on the "Vote" icon in the Blackbird Grapevine sidebar to vote on Most Shared articles. Explore the articles in the sidebar to find the one you are most interested in. Open the Blackbird Grapevine page to view more articles. You will need to be signed into the Blackbird Community in order to vote on Most Shared articles.
For other common browser-related questions please visit the Mozilla FAQ
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.9) Gecko/2008110401 [Blackbird/0.99a] Mozilla source code can be obtained from mozilla
A copy of the Mozilla Public License (MPL) may be viewed at the following address http://www.mozilla.org/MPL/MPL-1.1.html
For other Blackbird-related questions unanswered questions please send an email to