Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Africa Media Leadership Conference.

A three days conference was held from October 4th October 7th, 2009 at the Holiday Inn Hotel located at the Airport City in Accra for media owners to examine how they can harness and monetize the continent's growing youthful audiences heavily reliant on digital media channels as their sources of news, information and entertainment.

The conference; Annual Media Conference (AMLC) was on the theme; "Learning from the Future: Africa's Media Map in 2009. It was jointly sponsored by Rhodes University's Sol Plaatjie Institute for Media leadership (SPI) and Konrad Adenaur Foundation (KAS).

It was strictly by invitation and it had participants from South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Ghana and Trinidad & Tobago. I was a bit amazed, there was no participant from Nigeria at this year's...

Previous conferences have been held in diverse African countries, including Uganda, Mauritius, Mozambique, Kenya and South Africa.

Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa - Deputy Information Minister who represented the government of Ghana said African governments must soon learn that the media was a partner in governance and not an opponent and should allow the provision of appropriate legislation that would create avenue for freedom of expression and proper training for journalists to improve their professional standards on the continent.

He also made the attendees of the conference know that, media owners and publishers, had a critical role in assisting society to face challenges such as political intolerance, election mal-practices, cyber fraud, women and child abuse, and charged them to dramatically redefine media business and journalism.

Among the many participants at the conference was Global Voices Director - Georgia Popplewell who shared much information on twitter with proceedings from the conference which used the hash tag [#amlc09] on twitter.

Mr. Francis Mdlongwa, Director of Rhodes University's Sol Plaatjie Institute for Media leadership (SPI) said the conference seek to examine challenges facing long established newspaper, radio and television stations for survival in the face of the proliferation of digital media platforms. Listeners, viewers and readers are increasingly agitating for their own specific news content at their own time and place, and using preferred media platforms.

The conferences also provide a strong networking platform for participants by Africa's top-most decision-makers in the media industry and at times these conferences have resulted in new business being forged by some of the participants.

Photocredit: By @Georgiap

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