New Media 2000
A conference about the Internet and the Media in Africa to examine the
challenges and possibilities that information technology brings to news
organisations and the practice of journalism in Africa.
Hosted by the New Media Laboratory, Department of Journalism & Media
Studies, Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa.
10-12 September 1997.
New Media 2000 brings together media experts and global journalists to
examine the significance of the Internet for publishing and journalism
research in Africa.
Sixty full conference participants are expected to attend the three days of
proceedings, most of them presenting papers and/or taking part in panel
discussions. Another 40-50 delegates are expected to attend without
presenting papers. Some 50 students will also be present.
The conference will cover the themes of electronic data retrieval,
robot-assisted research, the virtual newsroom, the global library, the
wired journalist, multi-platform publishing, the state of Internet
connectivity and usage in southern Africa, community media and IT, ethical
questions related to new media, and similar topics.
Some of the many confirmed speakers to date are:
Jay Naidoo, South African Minister of Communications
Neil Jacobsohn, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, Times Media Limited (TML),
Philip Meyer, IT chief, Naspers, South Africa. (SA)
Nora Paul, Computer-Assisted Reporting (CAR) expert from the Poynter
Institute of Media Studies, Florida, USA
Peter Verwey, CAR expert from Utrecht, the Netherlands
Janet Carr, CAR lecturer, Rhodes journalism department, SA
Svante Beckman, head of technology at Sweden's new 'University of the
Future' -- the Centre for Culture and Media in Norrköping
Jeanne du Toit, lecturer and community radio worker, Grahamstown SA
Håkan Hvitfeld, HoD, Journalism, Stockholm University
Mark Comerford, The Swedish Association of Investigative Journalists
Fredrik Laurin, Inverstigative writer, Swedish Television
Prof Stanford G. Mukasa, Department of Journalism, Indiana University of
Karen Thorne, the community video Open Window Network, South Africa
Prof Subbiah Arunachalam, The Indian University of Technology
Paul Lester, Professor of Communications, California State University
Roland Stanbridge, Director of New Media Studies,, Rhodes University, SA
Anriette Esterhuizen, SangoNet, SA
Brian Trench, expert on ethics and New Media,, Dublin City University, Ireland
Pat Craddock, University of the South Pacific, Fiji
Tracy Cohen, Centre For Applied Legal Studies, Johannesbur g
David Lush, the Media Institute of Southern Africa
Michael Daka, Zambia Institute of Mass Communication
Shuller T Habeenzu, MD Zamnet, Zambia
Funding is being sought for several participants from other African states.
We will soon be mailing the full list of speakers, participating media and
For an estimated 30 of the delegates, the conference will be the
culmination of a week of workshopping at the following prior events:
* 1. Curriculae for teaching online skills: (conference of Southern African
journalism teachers, 7 - 8 September)
* 2. Pj '97: (2nd annual conference of South African photojournalists and
photojournalism instructors; includes major digital component, 7 - 8
* 3. Teletraffic 97 (8 - 10 September), a forum for research in the
fields of teletraffic, intelligent network design, networked multimedia,
and related issues.
BACKGROUND AND MOTIVATION:
As the key interface between the information rich and poor, the media needs
to be at the forefront of utilising new information technologies to expand
its reach and to raise the quality of its content.
News media in South Africa and elsewhere in Africa are taking online
publishing seriously. Several newspapers and broadcast companies already
have an Internet presence, ranging from the mundane to the highly
However, there is still confusion about what the Net means for journalism,
and uncertainty about appropriate online strategies, how to achieve
profitability, how to approach digital advertising, how to fully exploit
interactive possibilities ...
There is also, critically, a lack of communication about experiences,
whether between media players in South Africa, between South Africans and
Africa, and between Africa and countries abroad.
It is in this context that New Media 2000 takes place.
The event is expected to set in train a flurry of activities and networking
that will help ensure that Africa's media keeps up to speed with the new
possibilities as the millenium approaches.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:
i. To anticipate the growing impact of New Media on communications,
journalism, the press, and democracy issues in Africa over the 30 months
between the conference and the year 2000.
ii. To bring international New Media expertise to Africa in an
appropriate forum for dialogue;
iii. To network interested individuals in South Africa, Southern Africa,
East Africa and internationally;
iv. To provide a neutral forum for different media and other companies
to share experience;
v. To showcase relevant and cutting edge work in New Media;
vi. To upgrade skills and understanding of participants;
vii. To produce and publish a Report on the proceedings that will spread
the knowledge generated by the conference.
Professional individuals R300
NGO / Academic R500
Bed and breakfast accommodation in Grahamstown ranges from SA Rand 85 to
Rand 125 per night. On Rhodes University campus we are able to offer B&B
for R85 per night, and R65 per night for students.
PAPERS AND PRESENTATIONS:
Individuals, media and companies interested in either attending New Media
2000, or giving a presentation, can contact us via e-mail at
[log in to unmask], or by writing to: New Media 2000 secretary,
Department of Journalism, Rhodes University, Grahamstown 6140, South
Africa. Telephone +27 (0)461 318336/7. Fax +27 (0)461 28447
Director of New Media Studies
Dept of Journalism, Rhodes University
Grahamstown 6140, South Africa.