Google’s investing in Africa in a big way. Its startup incubators — Umbono in South Africa and Edba2 in Egypt — are great examples of this investment. Now it wants to give journalism on the continent a boost. The internet giant today announced the US$1-million African News Innovation Challenge (ANIC) which it says is aimed at helping African journalism “flourish in the digital age”. The project will provide grants from US$12 500 to US$100 000 for projects aimed at strengthening and transforming African news media…
Google’s Head of Communications for Sub-Saharan Africa Julie Taylor says the company is “committed to working with journalists across Africa to help them use technologies to gather and tell important stories”.
The challenge is being run by the African Media Initiative (AMI) — an association of media owners and operators.
“African media have a tremendous opportunity to leapfrog the business disruption faced by media in Europe and the U.S.,” says AMI Chief Executive Amadou Mahtar Ba. “The growing reach of mobile networks and improving Internet access is beginning to reshape the media landscape in Africa. We believe this competition will help African news organisations stay ahead of the curve.”
Google says the challenge is part of ongoing efforts to improve the way news is done in Africa and claims it “is already working with newsrooms across the continent to show journalists how the internet can help them be better reporters — whether it is doing advanced searches and analysis for investigative stories, or incorporating great data-based visuals or citizen voices into their reportage”.
Some of the challenge’s partners include the Omidyar Network, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the US State Department, the Konrad Adenheur Stiftung, and the World Association of Newspapers & News Producers.
“Omidyar Network is delighted to be supporting the African News Innovation Challenge,” said Stephen King, partner at Omidyar Network. “Across the continent we are seeing innovative ways in which technology is providing people with greater access to information. This challenge is a great opportunity for journalists, entrepreneurs and technologists to join forces and help enable the African media to hold their leaders to account.”
Although the competition is open to entrants from around the world, they must have at least one African partner. Entries must be submitted to the ANIC website by 10 July.
Google also sponsors the Nordic News Hacker prize in the Nordic region and supports the Global Editor Network’s data journalism prize and International Press Institute media innovation prizes.
Culled from meme.com
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