Technology & Convergence In Brief


- A battle is brewing over what is being considered the largest chunk of spectrum to be made available since the 1960s in South Africa.Around 400MHz of spectrum is expected to become available to the world after the broadcasters migrate to digital platforms. Mobile businesses globally are pitching for the ultra-high frequency (UHF), which has been traditionally used for analogue TV broadcasting. According to MTN senior manager for data, roaming and reseller solutions Brian Seligmann, having access to only 25% of that band could revolutionise Internet access in Africa. However, there is a feeling that broadcasters have claimed entitlement to that spectrum, since it has always been theirs. Seligmann says MTN's research shows access to the frequencies available in UHF will make the roll-out of local mobile networks far cheaper, and give Africa real benefits in terms of Internet penetration growth.

- Movie media and bloggs report that South African Actress, Ex-model and Oscar winner Charlize Theron (Monster) is interested in playing a lead role in “Atlas Shrugged”. The film is an adaptation of the best selling novel - listed as top seller on Amazon - from the novelist Ayn Rand. While Angelina Jolie was the most recent name attached to play protagonist Dagny Taggart, a few blogs say that other stars now interested include Angelina Jolie, Julia Roberts and Anne Hathaway.

Two South Africans will be jurists this year at the 56th International Advertising Festival taking place in Cannes, France on 21-27 June 2009. Firstly Executive Creative Director at The Jupiter Drawing Room's Ross Chowles (Cape Town) elected for Film Lions’ jury. For Press Lions, Deputy Executive Creative Director at Network BBDO's Graeme Jenner (Johannesburg) has been invited to join. Ross has previously judged Press at Cannes Lions, and also at The One Show, Art Directors Club of NY and Clio Awards, as well as having been on local awards panels for over 20 years. Graeme has won some awards too, including a couple of Loerie Grands Prix, a few Loerie Golds, an Ad Of The Year, a Gold Eagle, a few nods from Cannes Lions, The One Show, Clio Awards and more from overseas.

The International Advertising Festival - Cannes Lions - is the largest gathering of worldwide advertising professionals and advertisers as well as the most prestigious annual advertising awards. More than 10,000 registered delegates from 94 countries and around 12,000 total visitors from the advertising and allied industries attend this event to celebrate the best of creativity across all media mix, discuss industry issues and network with one another. Over 28,000 ads from all over the world are showcased and judged at the Festival. Winning companies receive the highly coveted Lion trophy, honouring the most creative TV/cinema, print, outdoor, interactive, radio, design, sales promotion, integrated advertising, as well as the best media and direct marketing solutions. A unique programme of high-profile seminars, workshops and keynote speakers are also presented by some of the biggest names in the industry. The Media Lions winners will be revealed on Tuesday 23 June.

The Festival , which has a global network of representatives in over 75 countries around the world is present in 3 African countries: South Africa (Cinemark), Nigeria (Chini Productions) and Ghana (Advertising Association of Ghana).

The next Discop Africa event will be held in Nairobi at the Hilton Hotel from 16-18 September 2009. Discop Africa’s first full-blown media market held in February 2009 (see Issue no 49, 50 and 51) was quite a success and brought with it a lot of enthusiasm for the African media market! The second edition is exceptional due to the current growth in the industry and the FIFA world cup next year. This event will include a number of conference sessions and professional workshops. One session will be held on alternative distribution platforms. Discop organisers plan on having one market a year thereafter. Further details on - contact:

Apr 16 - 26 - AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL IN CANADA - Montreal Canada -



Africa Future TV Conference 2009 has announced the launch of a conference focusing on digital and mobile TV in Africa in August 2009 in Johannesburg, South Africa. The Africa Future TV Conference 2009 aims to gather industry experts, business leaders, regulators, government officials and service providers from African countries for the broadcast industry conference. 20 Mar 2009 09:26

Ivory Coast hosts AMARC pan-African Conference 2009

The fourth pan-African conference held by the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters' (AMARC) will be held in Ivory Coast from 27 - 30 April, 2009. The host member organisation is the Union des Radios de Proximité de la Côte d'Ivoire (URCPI). 23 Mar 2009 10:42

Mediatech Africa readies industry for 2010

Mediatech Africa 2009 - South Africa's broadcast, media, entertainment and AV trade fair - comes as the industry prepares to capitalise on the opportunities presented by the 2010 FIFA World Cup. 17 Mar 2009 07:57