… something I have found myself – like so many others, according to the stats – needing to do less and less these days. It turns out it was a caricature of itself, which got me thinking about their announced move into 24-hour news. They covered at some length President … 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
Was the symbolism of the ANC’s centenary celebration carefully chosen, or the result of lack of thought? Continue reading
We should be careful not to romanticize war photographers. Anyone who has spent time with a bunch of them will know that it is easy to glorify the mixture of courage and foolishness, the adrenalin addiction, the search for “bang-bang” that drives them. But we must never stop appreciating them, and what they do for us … Continue reading
You have to be totally dismayed at the apparent collapse – again – of SABC governance. The hopes that this new board represented a fresh broom to sweep the rot out of the Auckland Park headquarters and re-establish a notion of independent, public service broadcasting, are rapidly fading. Continue reading
In Beeld this Saturday, I wrote of the implications of the Minister of Communications publishing what was the worst piece of draft legislation I have seen ever. What does it mean if one puts out a scrappy, contradictory, ill-considered Bill that has not even been discussed with your cabinet colleagues?
On the eTV controversy, I think there are two separate questions to ask and answer: was eTV wise to run this interview; and are the police wise to react so sternly? Continue reading
Probing behind the Nasper’s results shows some interesting things: how bad things are in newspapers, how our TV market is changing quietly, and just how big and powerful Naspers is. Continue reading
The Department of Communications responded firmly to the auditor-general’s report into the SABC.
The report showed that there appears to have been wild and uninhibited pilfering of the SABC coffers under former Group CEO Dali Mpofu and financial director Robin Nicholson (still, incidentally, the man with the keys to the safe). One’s immediate response was that at last someone was showing strong leadership at the department and taking a firm hand. But the measures they proposed were a direct move to usurp the role of the new SABC board and take control into the Ministry. Continue reading
In between the old SABC and the new one, I twice had a taste of what a national public broadcaster can do. It is a good time to recall those moments, as they get off to a fresh start. Continue reading
How parliament chose its candidates for the SABC board – and the arm wrestling that went on behind-the-scenes – tells us a lot about power in this society, and how it is exercised. Continue reading
Running the SABC is like being Springbok rugby coach. Or manager of Chiefs. Or a local police commander, Everyone knows how to do it, and knows better than the person doing it, and has no problem telling them how they should be doing it. It is the breeding ground of that archetypal South African, the armchair expert. Continue reading
There was a glaring miscommunication in the announcement that Dali Mpofu had received a reward of R11-m for his role in getting the SABC to the mess it is currently in. We were told that R4-m was a restraint of trade to prevent him working for or setting up a rival company. But surely you would want him to work for one of your competitors? Continue reading