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Tag Archives: New Media

The emergent new media ecology which integrates participatory media into the structure of global information flows has fundamentally affected the means of production and distribution of attention, a key resource for social movements. In social movement scholarship, attention itself is rarely examined directly; rather, it is encountered in the study of means of delivering attention such as mass media or celebrities. This conflation of the resource, attention, and the pathways to acquire it, such as mass media, was less of an analytic problem when mass media enjoyed a near monopoly on public attention. However, the paths connecting movement actors and public attention are increasingly multiplex and include civic and social media. In this article, I examine the concept of attention as a distinct analytic category, reevaluate social movement scholarship in light of weakening of the monopoly on public attention, and introduce and examine a novel dynamic brought about by emergent attention economy: networked microcelebrity activism. I examine this novel dynamic through case studies and raise questions for future exploration.

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THE media sector in South Africa is undergoing rapid transformation, which is leading to a divergence in share-price performance between traditional print publishers and companies that focus on new-generation content such as broadcasting and online media.JSE-listed media companies are AME (African Media and Entertainment), Kagiso, Naspers, Caxton and Times Media Group (formerly Avusa).The latter two companies are primarily exposed to the printing and publishing sectors, whereas the first three are in the broadcasting and entertainment sector. The difference in share performance between the two groups is telling.AME shares have risen by 29.4% over the past 12 months to September 18, Kagiso was up 16.6% and Naspers increased 39.6%.In contrast Avusa was down 1.7% for the 12 months before its shares were suspended pending its delisting. Although Caxton’s share price rose 12%, it lagged the top performers in the sector.

THE media sector in South Africa is undergoing rapid transformation, which is leading to a divergence in share-price performance between traditional print publishers and companies that focus on new-generation content such as broadcasting and online media.JSE-listed media companies are AME (African Media and Entertainment), Kagiso, Naspers, Caxton and Times Media Group (formerly Avusa).The latter two companies are primarily exposed to the printing and publishing sectors, whereas the first three are in the broadcasting and entertainment sector. The difference in share performance between the two groups is telling.AME shares have risen by 29.4% over the past 12 months to September 18, Kagiso was up 16.6% and Naspers increased 39.6%.In contrast Avusa was down 1.7% for the 12 months before its shares were suspended pending its delisting. Although Caxton’s share price rose 12%, it lagged the top performers in the sector.

Which are the hot media markets?
When I talk to global media companies, India remains a country of focus where people believe there is long-term opportunity. China may be restricted from the foreign investment viewpoint in traditional media, but increasingly it is developing as a digital market. By 2016, 40% of ad spends in China would be digital. In the short run, Indonesia and Vietnam are hot markets. Others that are of significant interest are Turkey, Brazil and southern Africa.
Can you regulate media in the age of Twitter and Facebook? Does it make sense to have ownership restrictions?
I think traditional cross-media ownership is probably missing the point these days. Today, it is not about who is controlling what because ultimately the consumer is taking control. Cross-media ownership rules will go under the knife. Logically speaking, the power of the Internet has kind of challenged a lot of regulation. The pace of regulatory change is probably slower than the pace of technology change and certainly slower than consumer change. So they are in a catch-up mode. But every regulator is very much aware of these issues.
What would your advice to regulators be?
The advice to any regulator is that it is about thinking about tomorrow and not regulating yesterday.