At the parliamentary public hearings on the state of advertising and marketing on 6 and 7 November 2001, a recommendation was made that all industry stakeholders should address serious transformation challenges facing the industry in South Africa. The Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) and the Department of Communications (DoC) were mandated to spearhead the process.
Subsequently, the first plenary meeting of all stakeholders in the industry was held on 6 December 2001, at the Association of Advertising Agencies’ (AAA) offices in Johannesburg. In the first instance, the meeting gave a comprehensive review of the public hearings held in parliament. A number of broad ideas and suggestions were broached to sketch a way forward. All stakeholders were agreed that the transformation of the industry is necessary. Concerns were also raised that steps should be taken in the industry to affirm as well as empower emerging stakeholders. The other pressing issues highlighted were the recurrent racial, gender and other barriers in the industry that were seen as a challenge that could be tackled within the industry. In that regard, four task groups were established with broad and inclusive representative structures from both civil society and the industry. First, a task group that would deal with content related issues in the industry was established. The second task group will deal with issues of representivity, ownership and media directors. A third task group is to focus on research and advertising spends. The fourth task group, which will be composed of all the chairpersons of the three task groups, is tasked with the development of a broad vision and direction to outline the overall transformation process of the industry.
The GCIS and the DoC will co-ordinate the convening of these task teams in early January 2002 and these task teams will report back to the full plenary between the end of March and the beginning of April 2002.
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Issued by: Government Communications (GCIS)