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Q. Explain the nature of your business or your role within New Media and print in your case?
I am a media professional and entrepreneur, currently the Chief Operations Officer and co-founder of Social Code Online Agency, a dynamic digital agency based in Cape Town. Social Code is a technology based agency that focused on social media and digital product development. The very nature of this business revolves around everything that is digital, online, and in the new media field.
Prior to moving to Cape Town to start up Social Code I was Head of Digital Innovation at Avusa Media. There I was responsible for overseeing and managing the company’s first digital innovation unit, which focused on developing cutting-edge mobile & web applications for the South African internet. During my time at Avusa I was part of a digital swat team that successfully shifted the corporate mindset to think and act digital. My role allowed me to contribute and grow the digital business which resulted in Times LIVE reaching a record breaking 1 million unique users and over 500 000 unique domestic users.
In 2009, my team and I were involved in the successful launch of the award winning Times LIVE, the re-branded and re-designed digital home of The Times and the Sunday Times – having further re-developed Times LIVE Mobile, Times LIVE Multimedia, and Times LIVE Blogs. Other projects include, Go2010, Times Explorer, SA Elections.
In 2007, I was involved in the successful launch of The Times and the conceptualization, implementation and management of The Times Multimedia operation. As the appointed Times Multimedia Production Editor, I oversaw the general technical production of multimedia products; developed rich media style guides and strategies, as well as managing and training a team of multimedia producers.
In 2006 I also co-founded the award winning student resource site, Jo’s Toolkit, which won the highly acclaimed Highway Africa Innovative Use of New Media Award.
Location of your business or company?
Q. Where are you based?
A. Cape Town
Q. Links to your websites:
Q. How do you see new media playing itself out in the future, what will be your contribution to the industry looking towards the future now?
A. My contribution towards the future will be the same contribution have made in the past thus far. What I, and my company does, is ultimately enabling brands, people, and business to have a digital presence and understanding. With every new client, project, product launch, and consultation, another member of society or a business is taken one step further into entering and partaking in the new media environment. Digital agencies and online professionals in general are enablers, who are stimulating the shift into the digital new media era. Therefore no matter how new media plays out in the future what we do now will be just as effective as new media plays itself out. Once you have the ability to aid people and companies into embracing media now, the job is done for the future.
Q. To new comers how should they structure their time with new media namely blogging, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube etc. For people whose industry does not involve any form of media, how do they manage their time and not become overwhelmed?
Consumption behaviour adapts to the technologies we are exposed to. Blogging, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube already play a huge and important part in our lives. We use our phones to access all these networks, we even use our tv’s to watch You Tube.
New technologies ultimately become part of every day life, they become our routine means of how we communicate and interact. As such, new technologies will ultimately structure themselves organically (either by them or us adapting to them) just as the introduction of the TV,Cellphones, etc have introduced and established themselves into our every day workings.
It’s important to interact with all these technologies, and thus would not argue a required time structure, since the use of these technologies will inevitably become part of ones every day life… As well as this digital media is so versatile that any type of industry can make use of one form of online media or another, there’s a space for everyone in digital you just have to find what works best.
Q. New Media is being used by children as young as five, that said,it is clear if you do not keep abreast with trends in new media you inclined to feel isolated from main stream living, what advice do you have for people who have lagged behind and would like to know where to begin?
A. Ask those around you that are using the technology. Get them to show you what they use online, on their phone, etc. Then, use Google, do some research, all the information required to understand what is going on is available online anyways, and the barriers of entry are getting less and less. Also, many people are scared, they are worried that they will not understand or adapt to using new technologies – but there are plenty of examples of people who have been scared but have overcome that angst by just trying out what is offered. We must not forget that technology has become so much more intuitive and because we live in a society, surrounded by technology/new media 24/7, we actually are in tune much more now than ever before.