On the 21st February 2012, the MDDA jointly with the Association for Communications and Advertising (ACA) and the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) reported back to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications on progress made by the organisations on the transformation of the advertising industry following the public hearings held on the matter in June and November of 2011.
Jointly the MDDA and ACA reported to the committee that discussions are progressing towards the possible areas of collaborations and areas of synergies, including industry agreements on the definitions of community and small commercial media, as defined in the MDDA Act. The parties agree and submit that the Marketing, Advertising and Communications (MAC) Sector Charter should have review mechanisms that include experiences encouraging media development and diversity. Further both the MDDA and ACA reaffirmed the industry's commitment to move the charter through the GCIS and DTI processes from a section 12 to a section 09 charter which will make the transformational milestones of the charter more binding to the industry.
Lumko Mtimde (MDDA CEO) informed the committee that, "the MDDA and ACA have agreed to pilot a training program that will explain the structure and landscape of the media in South Africa, which is to be designed in partnership with AMASA and in collaboration with MICTSETA and/or FP&MSETA to facilitate the necessary accreditation." The pilot program is to be conducted at the AAA school of advertising. Mtimde noted that reasonable and positive progress has been made since the last appearance before the Committee.
The MDDA Board has also approved the establishment of the on-line advertising booking system to enhance professionalism, accountability, record keeping, reporting and good community radio management. The Agency is currently finalising the cost benefit analysis and business plan of the system. This system is part of a response to the urgent matters raised during the Parliamentary Oversights Visits of community radio in 6 provinces which took place in 2011. The sector raised its dissatisfaction with the role played by some advertising brokers regarding some media campaigns that never reached the intended community radio stations but money had been paid to the broker. In some cases clients have reports submitted to them which may not have been generated by the community radio station concerned. The facts about one of the campaigns is available and is ready to be processed through the relevant institutions for further actions.
Nkwenkwe Nkomo (Chairperson of ACA) said, "ACA would want to give due credit to the Portfolio Committee on Communications, MDDA and GCIS, and it values the role of these state entities in pushing for and working with the industry on the transformation agenda." This according to Mr Nkomo has delivered what is today a joint and common approach to dealing and managing the transformational challenges of the industry.
This partnership is facilitating dialogue in the industry and has and will continue to ensure that we speak with one voice on issues that affect the industry. This unity has not come at a cost of any organisation compromising their mandate in any way, however it has been a joint partnership based on common interest and pursuing that that is agreeable and engaging on areas which we remain apart.