Now in its fourth season on HBO, Def Poetry continues to present both established and emerging spoken word poets to a wide television audience. This Peabody Award-winning series was created by Russell Simmons, his brother the poet Danny Simmons, and the producer Stan Lathan. HBO maintains a website for the series that includes an episode guide, a broadcast schedule, streaming video previews of the shows, and an online forum, allowing viewers to discuss the series. Some of the poets that have appeared on the show in the past include: Maggie Estep, Poetri, Chinaka Hodge, Alix Olson, Lou Reed, and Jamie Kennedy.
The series has since spawned a Tony Award-winning production, Def Poetry Jam on Broadway, and a companion book. The nine poets that constituted the cast of the Broadway show were selected from the dozens that had performed in the HBO series.