NC the First to Experience Digital Migration

The Department of Communications says the Northern Cape households will be the first to experience broadcast digital migration in South Africa.
Communications Minister Faith Muthambi, has launched the registration process for set-top-boxes at one of the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) communities in Keimoes near Upington.
The set-top-boxes are key in migrating from analogue to digital and according to Muthambi's spokesperson, Mish Molakeng, this is a very significant development.

Govt to Assist With DTT Registration

Communications Minister, Faith Muthambi, says the registration of indigent people for the installation of set top boxes for the migration from analog to digital will start on the first of next month.
Muthambi, who says government will assist with the registration, states that, “Come the first of October we're launching the registration. The post office is ready. We're starting in the Northern Cape because it's an SKA area and it's part of our priority.”

Gender and Internet Governance in Africa

As a researcher selected to participate in the gender and Internet governance exchange, what quickly became clear was the near absence of a gender perspective in Internet governance forums. The lack of this perspective is likely affect outcomes and recommendations around content, access and human rights online. The following talking points highlight work that has been done by the Association for Progressive Communications on gender and Internet governance issues.

Ministers and ICT Pledge for Vibrant Internet Ecosystem

The information society which encompasses information and communication technologies, including Internet, medias, broadcasting and postal services, represents one the most vibrant social and economic activities of this century.

It is against this backdrop among others that, African ministers of communication and information technologies gathering in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in their first ordinary session of the Specialised Technical Committee on Communication and ICT (STC-1 CICT) to discuss the significant strides and innovation in societal transformations in the last decade.

Govt’s ICT Spending to Top R15 Billion

Government spending on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is projected to top R15 billion as pressure mounts to meet national broadband goals.

According to a research firm, BMI-T's '2015 ICT in Government', the South African government's total national and provincial ICT spend is projected to grow from R13.6 billion in 2014/2015 to R15 billion in 2017/2018."

The upward trajectory of spending is further in line with government commitments to roll out digital terrestrial television (DTT) and deliver universal broadband by 2020.

South Africa’s Copyright Policies Criticised

South Africa is doing some amazing research but cannot share it globally because of restrictive copyright laws or unreasonable policies and embargo periods set by publishers.

South African authors cannot become known and cited if their works are locked up behind expensive paywalls, accessible only to a limited audience.

South African students and researchers also need access to the best international and local up-to-date journals, books and other research to be able to contribute new knowledge in their fields.

Cabinet Approves Film and Publications Bill

Cabinet has approved the submission of the Films and Publications Amendment Bill which is guided by policy that has been criticised for seeking to curb internet freedoms.

A cabinet statement says the bill seeks to amend the Films and Publications Act of 1996 by adapting it to technological advances.

These changes include catering for online and social media platforms “in order to protect children from being exposed to disturbing and harmful media content in all platforms (physical and online).”

Microsoft to Create Jobs in Africa

Microsoft is aiming to create over 100 000 job opportunities and reach over seven million people across the Middle East and Africa by the end of the year through its employability platforms, in partnership with organisations from public and private sectors, as well as non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

Draft Online Regulation Policy Criticised

The Right2Know Campaign has vowed to step up its campaign against the Film and Publication Board’s draft Online Regulation Policy, while the Democratic Alliance demanded that both Communications Minister, Faith Muthambi, and the board appear before Parliament to respond to the outcry over the document.

R2Kb spokesperson, Busi Mtabane, points out that, “Nobody should be subject to the draconian censorship regime that the FPB envisions.”

Mtabane says the R2K can take encouragement from the huge public outcry against the regulations over the past few months.

Internet Access to 'Spike' in South Africa

South Africa is forecast to see a massive jump in Internet traffic as more people switch to smartphones and other smart devices.

According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index 2015, which predicts that there will be 27 million Internet users in the country by 2019, up from just 15 million in 2014.

Cisco says that a significant percentage of that growth will centre on Internet video consumption, with South Africans expected to download 43 billion minutes of video content by 2019.


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