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Thread: Jacob Zuma and the media

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Jacob Zuma and the media

    It looks like Jacob Zuma is laying out his views and plan for the media quite early in his new role as ANC president. Suing the media may be more than just a lucrative sideline.

    If we look at his newsletter published yesterday, we see this lead in on ANC Today:
    The voice of the ANC must be heard
    During the course of the next five years, the ANC will pursue the development of its own media platforms, to articulate its positions and perspectives directly to the people. This needs to take place alongside the effort to transform the South African media so that it becomes more representative of the diversity of views and interests in society, more accessible to the majority of the people, and less beholden to commercial interests.
    If you then go on to read the actual newsletter, you get a rather disturbing view of Jacob Zuma's paradigm of the media as it is as present, and that he seems intent on "transforming the media."

    I see the press has responded:
    African National Congress (ANC) president Jacob Zuma's attack on the print media on Friday reveals a "hostile state of mind towards the media", says the South African National Editors' Forum (Sanef).

    "The attack on the media contains wild generalisations encompassing the media as a whole," it said in a statement on Friday in response to Zuma's weekly ANC Today online newsletter in which he said South African media were "politically and ideologically" out of sync with the society in which they operate.

    "There are few, if any, mainstream media outlets that articulate a progressive left perspective," Zuma said.

    Sanef said Zuma's letter contained no specific allegations and therefore did not merit a reply.

    However, the generalised complaint that the media were politically and ideologically out of sync with the society in which they exist could be answered "by suggesting that the ANC president and the ANC carefully read the many readers' letters columns in the newspapers, which will tell them what the people think".

    The forum also said it welcomed Zuma's stated intention to widen the channel of communication between the ANC and South African citizens.
    full story from M&G here
    I can't help wondering, though, if Jacob's desire to "widen the channel of communication" is for both lanes - improving ANC communication to the people and allowing the people to communicate to the ANC (and, of course, each other).

    We're getting awfully close to state controlled media ideas here, methinks.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

  2. #2
    just me duncan drennan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    We're getting awfully close to state controlled media ideas here, methinks.
    Yes, when I saw this story it made me very uncomfortable.
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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    All said and done it is no surprise that Jacob Zuma does not like the media. He has taken a pasting in the press for quite a few years now.

    He bases his argument that the press needs to be brought to heel transformed on media coverage in the run up to the last couple of elections. But you have to wonder how much he is driven by his own personal experience.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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