I am appalled that a seasoned journalist like BBC world affairs editor John Simpson should produce – in his piece “Is there a future for whites in South Africa?” – such a half-arsed, skewed view of reality. He appears to have fallen victim to the voice of a few paranoids, … Continue reading
The most important news this week may be this: South Africa’s broadband is one of the slowest and most expensive in the world. Ookla’s Net Index, put us 122nd out of 180 countries in internet speed, and 63th out of 64 in cost. We knew we were slow and expensive, … Continue reading
Photographer Greg Marinovich has done extremely important and valuable work in uncovering important evidence at the Marikana shooting site. By pointing out that 14 men were killed far away from where police were allegedly defending themselves, under circumstances that point to the possibility of cold-blooded killing, he has raised questions … Continue reading
Business leaders need to think carefully about how much they value their newspapers. The JSE is suggesting that listed companies will no longer be required to publish full and detailed company results in at least two national newspapers and two languages. This will threaten about R150-m of the advertising which … Continue reading
When does a newspaper cross the line from selling space to selling its soul? This is a question raised by MTN’s recent Mahala Thursdays campaign which was splashed across all media – including newspaper front pages and headlines and other elements normally protected as sacrosanct editorial space. Continue reading
It has been a year of vigorous and healthy contestation. We have fought over the independence of the judiciary, the freedom of the media and the appropriateness of presidential appointments. We have seen combat in parliament, the courts, the streets, the ruling party, the biggest opposition party, the provinces, the cities, and even the cabinet. We have arm-wrestled over political power, policy, ideology, history, language and song lyrics.
Branko Brkic is an editor’s dream and a publisher’s nightmare. He is a groundbreaker in South African publishing. He boldly starts new titles, usually with brilliant content, design and marketing, and charges in headfirst – with admirable courage and independence of spirit. Continue reading
The Oscar-nominated documentary, “The Most Dangerous Man in America”, could not be more timely. Released last year, it told the story of Daniel Ellsberg, the man who leaked the Pentagon Papers in 1971 and was charged with espionage – and puts in dramatic perspective the current row over Wikileak’s Julian Assange. Continue reading
Okay, it’s not so new, but it is becoming more prevalent – and it is certainly changing my reading habits. I am talking about curated sites – where smart people select and present information and articles from all over the web, and put them in an accessible form for people in a hurry to find good reads. Continue reading
I was quoted on a site called sify.com saying this: “The World Cup made us crazy. Money was spent carefully. I think the government will have a tough time in maintaining the stadiums. They will soon turn into white elephants,” said Anton Harber, professor at the University of Witwatersrand. I did not know when and where I might have said such babble, nor did I remember ever speaking to a reporter named Abishek Roy. Continue reading
Every new media technology has evoked fears that it will introduce foreign and dangerous ideas, break down social structures, run out of control and reduce us all to blathering idiots. Take writing. “It crooks your back, it dims your sight, it twists your stomach and your sides,” a monk wrote in the margins of a manuscript he was copying in a medieval monastery. Continue reading
There is growing consensus that Apple’s sleek and elegant iPad represents the future of newspapers, magazines and books. Continue reading
In California, you can be your own virtual news editor, getting journalists to cover stories you think are important. If, that is, enough people agree with you that it is worth paying a few dollars for the story. Through the website www.spot.us, you can deal directly with journalists looking for work.