Media struggling for survival in the age of digitalisation

2019-05-29

The NMT, in collaboration with Hanns Seidel Foundation, Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) and Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has launched the first-ever media sustainability study in Namibia, titled Namibia’s Media: Facing the Digital Challenge.

During her keynote address editor-in-chief, Khadija Patel, observed that no one has the answer regarding the post-print future to the media. She also stated that media houses must motivate and find new ways of doing journalism.

Patel thereafter joined local media experts, Tangeni Amupadhi (Editor, The Namibian), Umbi Karuahe-Upi (Chief Commercial Officer of NBC) and Redemeyer (News editor, Die Republikein) in a discussion on the sustainability of national media in the face of increasing digitalisation, international competition and poor economic conditions.

Invited guest, Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Stanley Simaata, shared similar sentiments and stressed the importance of embracing digitalisation, explaining that although it presents a threat to traditional media houses and their ability to remain relevant, it is part of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, characterised by a need to provide digital products and services. Simataa urged Namibian media to avoid armchair journalism, and not to comprise on quality.

Author of the study Dietrich Remmert advised media to accept digitalisation as a reality, and urged them to innovate, experiment and find synergies to survive and prosper.

The full report is available for download here. A summarised fact-sheet is available here.

* By JESSICA UIRAS. Jessica is third year Communications student at the University of Science and Technology in Windhoek, Namibia and is currently an intern at the NMT.