Communication experts endorse alternative media
About 120 communication experts, meeting in Accra, have endorsed a blend
of modern information and communication technologies with traditional
and other alternative media forms to disseminate information for
development in the globalised world.
from Africa, the Caribbeans and the Americas, served with spring water
in calabash, had sat enthralled as Professor Kofi Anyidoho, a Ghanaian
poet, welcomed to them into the country with a traditional poetic
The six-day conference, dubbed; "OURMedia 7,
on the theme: 7"Identity, Inclusion, Innovation- Alternative
Communication in a Globalised World" is developing the key that
alternative communication which involves a diversity of actors, voices,
themes and discourses needs to flourish and take hold to create
The participants, made up of academics,
activists, writers, journalists and other communication practitioners
from around the globe are discussing the topic through the presentation
of relevant research papers, innovative workshops and various media
forms including story telling, drumming and beating of gong-gongs and
street art and other traditional forms of communication.
in 2001, OURMedia is a global networks whose goal is to facilitate a
long-term dialogue between academics, activists, writers, journalists
and other communication practitioners and policy experts around
citizens media initiatives, with focus on the grassroots level.
underlining principle behind the OURMedia concept is that various forms
of traditional communication with emerging communication technologies
to let voices that had been drowned over years be heard.
in a video presentation, Prof John Downing, co-founder of OURMedia,
observed that it was necessary to create an atmosphere of participatory
media in the national development process, arguing there was no need
for any further in developing appropriate communication skills and
technology based on a nation's identity and its communication education
Prof. Downing underscored the connection between
media and social movement of people who had the same interests and
values which they could define openly without apology.
challenge for communicators was to use communication to help society to
diminish evil and do good, Prof Downing said, adding it was important
that organisations had people who were deeply culturally sensitive, to
provide solutions to crisis.
Prof Downing, who is also of
the Southern Illinois based Global Media Research Centre, called for
the gap between educators and communicators to be bridged.
Alfred Opubor, of a leading Communication Education Expert in Africa in
a discussion called for a change in the communication that was taught
in the African universities.
He said there was a crisis of
confidence in the use of gender which he said should mutually edify the
other in the communication business.
"No matter the depth of
a particular thing, and despite issues of hierarchy and experience
being different, they can be can be complementary and shared." Prof
Dr Audrey Gadzekpo. Acting Director of the
School of Communication Studies, referring the role of alternative
media and the OURMedia project, said a variety of communication forms
would not intimidate free expression and speech.
integral part of our OURMedia 7 is a Community Radio Symposium at Radio
in Ada, in the Dangme East District of the Greater Accra Region, which
also marks the 10th Anniversary of the station, which was Ghana's
pioneer Community Radio Station.
Source: GHANA NEWS AGENCY