Tag Archives: Cape Town

Fuseware Social Media Report

SOCIAL MEDIA: And how it is transforming business in South Africa

Fuseware is a Cape Town based social media research company that is currently creating a free social media research survey about the business case for social media in South Africa. They are asking the top influencers in the media and marketing industry for their views regarding this and aggregating all the information into a 100% free Fuseware report.

I was asked to participate in the Fuseware survey but wanted to open it to everyone to participate and offer further suggestions. The six most poignant questions follow with my own responses, but please feel free to contribute and get your chance to be heard! I will pass all comments on to the researcher that contacted me.

1. Fuseware: How is social media changing the business landscape, specifically for South Africa?

In the media industry, social media is the next phase of journalism. Media industries that do not adopt and embrace social media and networking into their production cycles will surely wither and die in the future. Situations where news rooms fight social media to get “the scoop” will never win by virtual of the speed and spread that is offered by services such as Twitter, Blogs and even Facebook. Media organisations need to learn how to use social media themselves in unique ways if they wish to remain a viable source of information.

2. Fuseware: What is the most difficult challenge of social media use in business in South Africa?

I would argue that the biggest challenge for businesses in SA is finding unique ways to make effective use of social media without harassing and bomb-barding social networkers with corporate spam. Simply posting links to any business website on every social media platform, for example, is not effective use of social media and will only irritate people and possibly taint the name of that business or brand.

3. Fuseware: What is your ultimate example of business success in social media?

News websites that have developed social media extensions for their product are proving to be very successful in SA. News24, The Dispatch and The Times are three examples of businesses that have made effective use of social media by offering something of interest and value that was not possible with their print products. Interactivity, commenting platforms, reader feedback, creating web-presence and the use of multimedia are all effective forms of optimising such a business.

4. Fuseware: Which companies in South Africa do you think are doing social media the right way?

The three news corps. mentioned: News24, The Times and The Dispatch. Also gaming and IT websites are showing huge growth in SA – e.g. Take2, and of course the blogging community and more specifically blog aggregators – i.e. Afrigator and MyScoop are making great and effective use of social media in SA. These will continue to grow for a good while yet.

5. Fuseware: How can businesses in SA measure the effectiveness of their social media campaigns?

It depends on the campaign really. Following trends would be a good start, but most social media campaigns can be measured by number of followers / subscribers and the growth of these. Keeping track of website statistics and engaging with their audience(s) is also of utmost importance.

6. Fuseware: How do you envision the usage of social media in SA in 2-3 years?

The internet today is defined as “web 2.0” – i.e. the “social web”. The proliferation of social media websites and services will continue to grow in the next few years and more businesses are likely to adopt social networking into their business models. It’s almost becoming a case of “do-or-die” meaning that if businesses do not create a web-presence within the next 2-3 years while their competitors do, they will risk losing a huge number of customers / clients / readers.

  • If you would like any of your own input sent to the Fuseware team before they put together their social media report, please add it as a comment below.

Earth Hour 2010

Earth Hour banner

“We have only one planet. Given what we know about climate change today, it would be foolish not to act. Earth Hour 2010 gives an opportunity to the people of the world to unite in a call for action on climate change and to take the lead by making changes in their own lives.” – Dr Morné du Plessis, CEO, WWF South Africa

FOR Earth Hour 2010, WWF calls on all South Africans to switch off their lights on Saturday, 27 March, as a symbolic act to send a powerful message to leaders that the time to act on climate change is now.

The Copenhagen Climate Summit in December failed to deliver the climate deal our planet needs. This year WWF is challenging individuals to take the lead by pledging to reduce their own carbon footprint. We have to show world leaders that we are serious about tackling climate change and that we want them to deliver a fair, effective and binding climate deal – a deal that keeps global warming as far below 2 degrees as possible.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu is the patron of the campaign, and Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban have already pledged their support for Earth Hour 2010. Other celebrities, who will be switching off their lights, include The Parlotones, Bryan Habana, Jo-Ann Strauss, Marc Lottering and The Stormers.

Participating in Earth Hour is easy and free. All you need to do is:

  • Pledge your support and commit to reducing your carbon footprint.
  • Switch off the lights of your home on 27 March from 8:30pm – 9:30pm.
  • Spread the message to your friends and family.
  • Show your support by posting the Earth Hour 2010 web banner and widget on your website or Facebook pages, downloading the Earth Hour email signature, printing posters or having an Earth Hour event.
  • Download the Green Events Guide, just click on the events button at the top of the webpage. You can download all of the above from the website. Click on the get involved button for loads of information and fun ideas.
  • Download the complete DIY kit on how to roll out Earth Hour in your city

Save the date: Saturday, 27 March 2010, 8:30pm – 9:30pm.

Please email or contact us on 021 888 2800 if you have any questions. We hope that you will support Earth Hour 2010. Together we can make a difference.

Kind Regards,
The WWF team

“Stand as one” 2010 Fifa World Cup Song

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STAND AS ONE: The unofficial Fifa 2010 World Cup song

THIS is the South African 2010 World Cup song everybody is talking about. FIFA and SAFA have not yet backed this track, so it’s creators have decided to take the melody to the people. The foot-tapping beat is called “Stand As One” and after I listened to it it gave me tingles down my spine. Any feedback and comments will be passed onto the creators. Otherwise just enjoy it!

Come on Dance! As we blow our Vuvuzela!!

“Stand as one” 2010 Fifa World Cup Song

Title: Stand as One
Artist: Martin PK
Producer: David Campos
PR/Marketing: JP van der Spuy

Related video: Proudly South African

The Man in the Glass House

CAMPAIGN: Wired comedian to live in Connect Box for 10 weeks

THROUGH the launch of its In the Connect Box concept, FNB Connect has challenged one man to live his life inside a glass box for 10 weeks using only FNB Connect’s Surf (data) and Talk (voice) product offerings.

Voted as “best Internet service provider for customer service as well as billing” in the 2009 MyBroadband survey, FNB Connect aims to use its digital platform to showcase inventive ways for FNB clients to save on costs in today’s highly competitive broadband and telecommunications market.

“The aim is to prove that through FNB Connect you can live your whole life digitally and at the same time do it for a lot cheaper compared with most other ISPs. We wanted to do this in a fun and dynamic manner by developing a campaign that embraces the digital world in keeping with our status as a virtual Internet service provider,” said Zanele Hadebe, marketing head for FNB Connect.

The FNB Glass House

FNB Glass House

The FNB Glass House - Thomas Gumede's home for the next few weeks

FNB has created a see-through state-of-the-art glass house that consists of a tastefully decorated sitting room, bedroom, kitchen (kitted with the latest appliances) and obviously a bathroom which will not be visible to the public.

The portable home is moving from shopping mall to shopping mall nationally and will allow Thomas Gumede to do live interactions with the general public online and by use of a cellphone and using Internet software.

Live interactions will demonstrate how effective, user-friendly and cost effective three online FNB products are. Anyone who happens to be in the vicinity of the house (which will be moved to various shopping malls during the 10-week period) will see the Gumede’s every move, except (of course) for his bathroom and shower breaks.

The benefit of Gumede living in the house in public spaces will enable folk to physically see how the products are used as well and mingle cyberly with this young celebrity.

The concept, which went live on October 14, is one of the most effective ways live or on a television screen to show physically how online products work. Once the 10 weeks are over, the general public will get an opportunity to win the plentiful new-age appliances occupying the glass house.

The man inside the glass box

Thomas Gumede
Thomas Gumede

The Connect box will travel nationwide, making a series of visits to shopping malls in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town.

Travelling with the Connect Box is up-and-coming comedian Thomas Gumede. He will live his life in the box, which started in Jo’burg on October 14, making his final exit on December 20 in Cape Town.

Gumede is a young actor and comedian who originally hails from Tongaat in KwaZulu-Natal. He has acted in major South African television drama series, including Rhythm City and A Place Called Home. He is currently on our screens as the presenter for a reality series called So You Think You’re Funny and has released a stand-up comedy DVD, Thomas Gumede Live.

The FNB Connect Challenge
Gumede’s challenge is to exhibit what can be done using FNB Connect online. His aim is to prove that you can do anything, anywhere, anytime for less using only the Internet.

Through Facebook, Twitter and his personal website and blog at www.intheconnectbox.co.za, Gumede will be set daily tasks that he will need to undertake using only Cell Pay Point, eBucks, an FNB credit card and FNB Connect Surf (data) and Talk (voice).

Members of the public will be encouraged to assist him in delivering on his tasks or even create tasks for him to undertake. The public will also be able to communicate with Gumede throughout the campaign.

Thomas will live in the house all by himself for 10 weeks, without any visitors from family, friends or colleagues. He will not be allowed to leave the house unless compromising circumstances arise — for instance if the house gets flooded in a freak plumbing accident.

The young comedian will live his life vicariously through three FNB on-line products, which have been designed to make using the Internet much easier, faster and more cost effective. The benefits of these services will be fully demonstrated by Gumede — educating the public on how the products work.

“We are really excited to have Thomas involved in this groundbreaking campaign as he brings huge value to the campaign. Our aim is to showcase to our clients that through our innovative data and voice product offering, FNB clients can save substantially with FNB Connect,” said Hadebe.

Connect Box dates around the country:

  • Johannesburg: Cresta Shopping Mall: 14-18 October, East Rand Mall: 21-25 October, 2009, Clearwater Mall: 28 October – 1 November and the FNB Whiskey Live Festival at Sandton Convention Centre: 11-14 Nov
  • Durban: Gateway Shopping Mall: 18 – 28 November
  • Cape Town: Canal Walk: 1- 6 December, Cape Gate Centre: 8 – 13 December and V&A Waterfront: 15 – 20 December

FNB Connect is a virtual internet service provider, providing:

  • FNB Connect Surf: a prepaid ADSL data solution that offers clients unshaped data that makes it ideal to surf the web, conduct online activities such as gaming, downloading of big files and making internet calls. There are no caps, no contracts and a 12 month data carry over.
  • FNB Connect Talk: a voice offering that can save FNB clients up to 50% on their phone bill using an existing internet connection to make calls from their PC, compatible cellphone or landline. Free calls can also be made when calling other FNB Connect Talk users.

For more information on the FNB Connect campaign, please visit the In the Connect Box website at www.intheconnectbox.co.za or to learn more about FNB Connect please visit www.fnbconnect.co.za

Cape Town and slavery

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CAPE TOWN: How slavery has influenced Cape cuisine, architecture, language and Cape Town traditions

by Niki Moore

Free me!IT would be irresponsible to ignore our most significant event in decades even in a travel column, so this week’s effort is about the universal franchise – or rather, the lack of it.

One group of South Africans never had a vote, never had any freedom at all, and yet their contribution to our society has been priceless. These are the slaves of the 17th century Cape Colony.

The Western Cape has its unique character because of slaves. There are still reminders of slavery around Cape Town: the Slave Lodge in Adderley Street (now a museum), the Slave Stone where slaves were displayed prior to being sold, the Slave Tree where they waited their turn to go on the block. But their influence goes much deeper than physical relics.

A brief history lesson
The very first consignment of slaves arrived at the Cape on the ship Amersfoort on March 28, 1658. They had been captured by the Dutch from a Portuguese slaver that was on its way to Brazil, filled with captives from Angola. This was the first of only three shiploads of slaves from Africa. The Dutch East India Company (VOC) controlled the Cape and had extensive holdings in the East Indies, so it made sense for slaves to come from Indonesia and Malaya. And they did – thousands of them. Within 50 years of the establishment of a victualling station at the Cape, slaves outnumbered free men.

VOC shipFor 176 years (until slavery was abolished) the economy of the Cape depended on slaves. They worked in homes, on the farms, in shops and factories, on building sites. Officially, almost 7 000 slaves were brought to the new colony on VOC-sponsored slave ships, but many more arrived with Dutch East India officials returning home from Batavia. Because the Netherlands outlawed slavery, the officials sold their slaves in the Cape before embarking on the last leg of their return voyage home.

The life of a Cape slave
A slave’s lot was not a happy one. If they survived the journey (an ‘acceptable’ casualty rate for slaves was 15%), they died of overwork and malnutrion, torture and mistreatment. Many committed suicide. The hardy ones existed entirely at the whim of their masters – punished harshly, executed, married off or sold willy-nilly.

It is hard to think that anything good can come out of such sustained human misery, but amazingly, the Cape has some reminders of slavery that are testaments to the resilience of the human spirit.

Cape cuisine
koeksisterSlaves were cooks and kitchen staff, and they had a huge influence on Cape menus. Our national dishes such as bredie, koeksisters, bobotie, sosaties and tameletjie (toffee) all have Malay influence. C. Louis Leipoldt – a writer and keen cook – was the first Afrikaner to recognise and formalise Cape cuisine, a mixture of East and West.

Cape architecture
Initially slaves only did menial work, but as slave populations stabilised they were trained in skilled occupations. Slaves were taught to build houses in the Dutch style, but they introduced many little Eastern flourishes in the ornate stone pediments and ornamental gardens. The Castle, Groot Constantia, Vergelegen and Simonsig were all built by slaves.

Cape slang
It is believed that Afrikaans developed as a ‘kitchen-language’ – a simplified form of Dutch that slaves learned in order to communicate with their Dutch-speaking masters. Proof of this, perhaps, is the fact that the first Afrikaans was written in Arabic script, and the language is enriched by many Arabic words such as piesang (banana), bredie (stew), baklei (fight), soebat (to plead).

Slave names
There are a surprising number of people who – whether they are aware of it or not – are descended from slaves. A dead give-away is the name: slaves were always given names by their owners, and unimaginative people would choose an easy name such as the month in which the slave was bought (Februarie, September), names of Roman heroes such as Cupido or Hannibal, biblical names such as Moses and Solomon, or whimsical names describing some attribute such as Fortuijn (if the slave was expensive), Witbooi (if they were light-skinned), or from their region of origin such as Basson, Claassen, or Snyman.

Slaves were Muslim and introduced their religion into the daily life of the Cape. The Cape Peninsula is ringed by 20 kramats, or holy sepulchres, that have fulfilled a 250-year-old prophecy that a ‘circle of Islam’ will be formed around Cape Town.

Cape slave traditions
Some current traditions in Cape Town date back to the days of slavery. On the Prophet Mohammed’s birthday women cut up orange leaves in the mosques. This slave tradition, known as ‘rampie-sny’, is unique to Cape Muslims.

The most enduring relic today is the Kaapse Klopse, or Tweede Nuwe Jaar. The slaves got this one day a year off, perhaps because their masters were too busy recovering from hangovers to need their services. Annually, on January 2, the descendants of slaves take to the city streets with bands and dances. The bright street parades and music are a joyous celebration of life over adversity, and a custom as unique to Cape Town as the noon gun and the flower-sellers on Adderley Street.

Now wasn’t that Quite Interesting ?

  • Used with kind permission of Niki Moore – a freelance feature writer and reporter currently living in St Lucia. You can read her original article “Throwing off the shackles” here.