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Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Tenth Annual Media Conference focuses on new media technologies


CPUT’s Tenth Annual Media Conference explored technology and new media. Held on Saturday, 18 October 2008, the conference attracted tech-savvy speakers on new media’s cutting edge.

“Technology impacts on our lives in all areas; sometimes changing things, sometimes keeping things the same, but improving speed or accessibility. It is important that we use the conference to explore the effectiveness of technology commercially and socially,” said Rifqah Abrahams, Junior Lecturer: Media Studies and supervising lecturer for the media conference.

“Keep it simple and don’t complicate things,’’ said guest speaker Melissa Attree, who specialises in social media, branding and educating as many people as possible about online communication. She focused on the importance of listening, collaborating and engaging with customers online in order to best present your brand.

Charl Norman, internet entrepreneur and operations manager for Blueworld Communities, a leading social networking technology company, spoke about social networking trends and developments around the world and in South Africa.

“A recent study found that 58% of people trust people like themselves, not CEOs and marketing managers,” said Tim Shier, Marketing Manager at Africa’s largest full service online marketing agency.

Shier introduced the audience to the field of online reputation management and the free online eMarketing resource, eMarketing – the Essential Guide to Online Marketing. This textbook, developed by Quirk, will be updated every six months and is available in print or as a download from the Quirk eMarketing website.

Vincent Maher, Jayne Morgan and Peter Greenwall also served as guest speakers. Their presentations included discussions on citizen journalism and new broadcasting methods such as podcasts. During the recess guests enjoyed the interactive exhibition where they were able to try out XBOX, Playstation 3 and Nintendo Wii consoles.

""The dynamic speakers had everyone on the edge of their seats with their cutting edge information! The enthusiasm was infectious and bounced from the first to the last speaker. I left totally inspired,"" said Prof. Johann van der Merwe. Head of Department: Public Relations Management.

“I learnt so much from the speakers at this year’s conference,” said Monique Boucher, Public Relations BTech student and Conference MC, “In a time where lifestyle revolves around technology and with business centered on online accessibility, talking technology makes perfect sense.”

By Danelle Milward

Photograph: Public Relations BTech student and conference MC Monique Boucher welcomes guests to the 2008 Student Media Conference.

Written by CPUT News