THE RIDICULOUS REASONS THESE DStv CARTOONS GOT BANNED

Saturday, January 23, 2016

M-Net CEO Yolisa Phahle to fired Gareth Cliff accusing M-Net of double standards in Idols court battle: 'Leave Unathi and Somizi out of this.'


M-Net CEO Yolisa Phahle is firing back at the sacked Idols judge Gareth Cliff, saying leave your former Idols co-judges Unathi Msengana and Somizi Mhlongo out of this.

Gareth Cliff is now suing M-Net and [SIC] Entertainment for R25 million, wants his judge's seat at the reality singing show back and wants the court to urgently postpone the 29 January start of the auditions of the 12th season of Idols before it starts without him.

He ignited a social media firestorm that spun out of control and led to a call to boycott M-Net, Idols and Mzansi Magic after he waded into the race debate that exploded after Penny Sparrow's racist comments.

Gareth Cliff accused M-Net of a double standard - arguing in his court application that he is being made a scapegoat while M-Net didn't take the same action against Unathi Msengana and Somizi Mhlongo who both caused major public outrage and their own social media storms in 2015 for controversial things they've said.

M-Net admitted that Unathi Msengana's social media firestorm impacted M-Net and that months later "we then had to deal with Somizi's inappropriate comments".

M-Net said it had implemented a zero tolerance policy, but Gareth Cliff says the first time he heard about that was when he had to read about it in a M-Net press statement to the media.


ALSO READ: M-Net's answering affidavit in fired Gareth Cliff case reveals several surprising 'secrets' - like a 2016 Idols Theatre Week set at the Wild Coast and not Sun City.


M-Net's CEO Yolisa Phahle in the pay-TV broadcaster's answering affidavit says "following the social media incident involving Unathi Msengana, Lani Lombard [M-Net's head of publicity] spoke to each of the Idols judges regarding their use of social media in order to emphasise that they need to comply with the code of conduct that formed part of their agreements with M-Net and to proceed with caution when engaging with people on social media".

"When Lani Lombard spoke to him about the dangers of social media, he specifically stated that he was well aware of of how social media works and the need for caution".

Yolisa Phahle is telling Gareth Cliff to back off Unathi Msengana and Somizi Mhlongo, saying the other Idols judges shouldn't be dragged into the court case because "the other two incidents are clearly distinguishable".

"Unathi used inappropriate language in communicating with a member of the public. However, she didn't issue a public statement of her own accord" and according to M-Net "the message also didn't relate to the very sensitive topic of race relations".

"Somizi's statement, correctly interpreted, is a criticism of white South Africans who he perceived to be engaging in racist conduct," says Yolisa Phahle.

"Although the language used was unfortunate, his post was directed to 'racist white South Africans' and not to white South Africans generally."

M-Net in the answering affidavit says that "the controversy generated by Unathi Msengana and Somizi Mhlongo and the negative sentiment that they generated was not comparable to to that which was expressed in reaction to Gareth Cliff's statement".

"The context was also entirely different as Gareth Cliff chose to enter the fray in the midst of an acrimonious discussion about race relations in the country and made statements which, by his own admission, were highly insensitive and ill-advised".

M-Net CEO Yolisa Phahle: Gareth Cliff became 'poison' - court affidavit's detailed marketing and social media research show how fired Idols judge damaged M-Net and Idols brands.


M-Net CEO Yolisa Phahle, as part of M-Net's answering affidavit in the acrimonious court case with Gareth Cliff after firing him as an Idols judge, submitted detailed marketing and social media research showing how Gareth Cliff became "poison" for the M-Net and Idols brands.

The public's sudden negative sentiment against Gareth Cliff after he waded into the racist Penny Sparrow debate, and with his proximity and association with M-Net and Idols, was part of the motivation for the M-Net CEO giving the longtime Idols judge the boot.


ALSO READ: M-Net's answering affidavit in fired Gareth Cliff case reveals several surprising 'secrets' - like a 2016 Idols Theatre Week set at the Wild Coast and not Sun City.


Gareth Cliff is now suing M-Net for R25 million, wants his judge's seat at the reality singing show back and wants the court to urgently postpone the 29 January start of the auditions of the 12th season of Idols before it starts without him.

Yolisa Phahle says in her affidavit that marketing intelligence and social media analysis showed M-Net that Gareth Cliff became "poison" to M-Net and Idols' image after he made his "insensitive" comments on the Penny Sparrow racism controversy.

M-Net and Idols face "the very real prospect that the negative sentiment surrounding him will continue and poison the success of the show. This could affect viewership numbers, which in turn affects the revenue that will be generated from broadcasting the show," said Yolisa Phahle.

As part of its 141 page answering affidavit, M-Net submitted very detailed marketing research and social media analysis of how Gareth Cliff impacted the M-Net and Idols brands - as well as examples of the press clippings, media coverage and media enquiries it received after he became embroiled in the racism debate and pulled the M-Net, Idols and Mzansi Magic brands into it.

According to detailed marketing and social media research done for M-Net and included in the affidavit "it clearly indicate that the negative mood towards Gareth Cliff on social media continued after his apology on 5 January," says Yolisa Phahle.

The pay-TV broadcaster says the widespread calls from the public for a boycott of M-Net and Idols was not a typical response to get for this kind of debate.

"If M-Net had permitted the 2016 season of Idols to continue with Gareth Cliff as judge and and the threats and calls for a boycott had grown, it would have become even more problematic to address the situation at a later stage and the damage to the Idols and M-Net brands would already have occured," says Yolisa Phahle.

M-Net cites social media research reports indicating that the public "remains critical of Gareth Cliff". "This continued negativity and controversy demonstrates exactly why [M-Net and SIC Entertainment] felt that it was not appropriate to continue to be linked to Gareth Cliff".

Yolisa Phahle says "Gareth Cliff's claim that he received overwhelming support is clearly not correct," and that "a significant portion of the public were clearly offended. Accordingly M-Net was entitled to take action to protect its brand and reputation".

According to social media marketing research M-Net submitted, there were 32 886 tweets mentioning Gareth Cliff between 4 and 12 January this year. Idols, M-Net, Mzansi Magic and DStv and MultiChoice were all suddenly mentioned in some of these tweets and social media discussions.

Other big words that popped in the tweetcloud due to the high frequency of its use together with these words were "racist", "hatespeech", "pennysparrow" and "hate".

After M-Net announced it had fired Gareth Cliff, "although the positivity towards Cliff had increased, there was still significant negativity towards him [23% negativity between 9-12 January compared to 19% positivity]".

Friday, January 22, 2016

BREAKING. M-Net's affidavit in fired Idols judge Gareth Cliff case makes surprising 'secrets' public ... like Idols Theatre Week at the Wild Coast!


You're reading it here first.

M-Net's answering affidavit in the acrimonious TV divorce and resultant court case with the fired Idols judge Gareth Cliff reveals several surprising secrets and insights - like a 2016 Idols Theatre Week set at the Wild Coast and Gareth Cliff's middle name ... Rhydal!

M-Net says if it takes Gareth Cliff back on Idols that the pay-TV broadcaster believes he will now "poison" the show.

M-Net has finally filed an answering affidavit in the court case following after abruptly firing Gareth Cliff as Idols judge who wants his job back, with M-Net saying it can't and won't delay the upcoming start of the 12th season's auditions.

M-Net is seeking the immediate dismissal of Gareth Cliff's urgent court application with costs.

In the ugliest South African broadcasting court battle since the SABC and its chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng were forced to go to court in 2015 in multiple court cases, early 2016 suddenly pulled the Randburg-based pay-TV broadcaster into a legal and public image mess - ironically coming in the same year that M-Net will celebrate its illustrious 30th anniversary.

Gareth Cliff is suing M-Net for R25 million and wants his job back on the reality singing show after being abruptly fired.

He ignited a social media firestorm that spun out of control and led to a call to boycott M-Net, Idols and Mzansi Magic after he waded into the race debate that exploded after Penny Sparrow's racist comments.

Whereas Gareth Cliff's court application is 83-pages long, M-Net's answering affidavit runs to 141 pages.

M-Net reveals that its planned for the 12th season's dreaded Theatre Week of Idols in 2016 to take place at the Wild Coast resort. In the past few seasons it's always been held at Sun City.

(Interestingly Sun City is also being dumped for Miss South Africa 2016 - M-Net and Vuzu AMP will broadcast the pageant from Carnival City.)

M-Net cites wide-ranging social media research from external social media and media coverage companies, showing that " M-Net immediately became embroiled in the dispute as a result of its association with the applicant".

It means that M-Net was dragged into the public debate about racism in South Africa, through what Gareth Cliff tweeted when he tweeted about Penny Sparrow.

M-Net reveals that it received complaints from subscribers. "Subscribers wanted clarity on M-Net's continued association with Gareth Cliff".

"In relation to its brand image, and with less than a month to go before the start of Idols 2016 auditions, M-Net felt that it could not afford to become embroiled in the political and racial controversy surrounding Gareth Cliff's statements," says M-Net's CEO Yolisa Phahle in the affidavit.

Yolisa Phahle reveals that she asked for a meeting with Gareth Cliff and that he showed up with his manager Rina Broomberg.

"I started the meeting by offering Gareth Cliff an opportunity to explain his controversial tweet and subsequent apology."

Yolisa Phahle reveals that "I was informed by Rina Broomberg that she and Gareth Cliff were not there to answer questions".

Yolisa Phahle reveals M-Net's fear: "We were concerned that the statements made by him and the public backlash that his statements had attracted would have the effect of detracting from the Idols show and the M-Net brand".

"M-Net did not want to tarnish the upcoming season of Idols with a race controversy from the start. I told him that M-Net would not be able to include him in the judging panel for the upcoming season".

M-Net reveals that it offered Gareth Cliff the chance to "save face" by saying that he is voluntarily stepping away from Idols.

"I felt that it was important to give Gareth the opportunity to save face publicly by voluntarily stepping down from the show," says Yolisa Phahle in the affidavit M-Net submitted to court. "He was not interested in issuing a joint statement".

"In the entertainment industry 'perceptions are everything' and public response underlies the very success or failure of that business," says Yolisa Phahle.

M-Net says if Gareth Cliff is taken back as an Idols judge, M-Net and Idols face "the very real prospect that the negative sentiment surrounding him will continue and poison the success of the show. This could affect viewership numbers, which in turn affects the revenue that will be generated from broadcasting the show".

"The controversy relating to this matter is not going to go away," says Yolisa Phahle.

She says she had to take action "in the face of what I assessed to be a serious threat to M-Net's brand".

"The judges of Idols are carefully selected because of their ability to draw audiences and they are appointed to entertain and delight the public - not to shock and offend them".

Gareth Cliff would have gotten a 6% raise for the 2016 12th season of Idols: R377 530.

LATE BREAKING. M-Net files affidavit in fired Idols judge Gareth Cliff court case: We won't and can't stop Idols, Gareth Cliff damaged himself.


M-Net has finally filed an answering affidavit in the highly acrimonious TV divorce and resultant court case after abruptly firing Gareth Cliff as Idols judge who wants his job back ...

... M-Net says it can't and won't delay the upcoming start of the 12th season's auditions and that M-Net is seeking the immediate dismissal of his urgent court application with costs.

Gareth Cliff is suing M-Net for R25 million and wants his job back on the reality singing show.


ALSO READ: M-Net's answering affidavit in fired Gareth Cliff case reveals several surprising 'secrets' - like a 2016 Idols Theatre Week set at the Wild Coast and not Sun City.


M-Net is slamming Gareth Cliff in its affidavit, revealing that M-Net told Gareth Cliff that he can say that he decided to step away from Idols, thereby preserving his, M-Net and Idols' dignity and image.

Gareth Cliff declined. Then M-Net issued its own statement.

"In the interest of preserving an amicable relationship with him, he was offered the opportunity to issue a joint statement with M-Net in order to voluntarily step down from the show, which he declined," says M-Net.

M-Net says it can't and won't delay the start of Idols since it will have "far-reaching financial and reputational consequences for M-Net and [SIC] Entertainment should the 2016 auditions be stopped".

"Venues and crew have already been booked," says M-Net and the Randburg based pay-TV broadcaster says " all freelance contractors and crew members would lose out on their income".

"Any changes to the filming schedule would also have a detrimental impact on the Idols contestants themselves, many of whom are students, who have already made arrangements to participate in the scheduled auditions".

M-Net is hitting back at Gareth Cliff as hard as his statements and court application did the past week, with M-Net now saying the only damage to Gareth Cliff's reputation was the damage he did himself.

"Any harm done to Gareth Cliff's reputation is a direct result of his own actions and not as a result of M-Net's decision to exclude him from the Idols judging panel".

"Gareth Cliff chose to enter the fray in the midst of an acrimonious public discussion about race relations and made statements which he admits were highly insensitive and ill-advised," says M-Net.

M-Net says it got rid of Gareth Cliff because as a commercial TV broadcaster "M-Net did not wish to participate in fueling further racially based divisions in the country".

India's TV mogul, Zee Media's Subhash Chandra, releases his autobiography, The Z Factor, about how he launched Zee TV and changed the TV biz.

Another insider book about making and the business of television, The Z Factor - My Journey as the Wrong Man at the Right Time has been released - and is the story of Subhash Chandra (65), the chairperson of India's largest TV channel network Zee Media, Essel Group.

Some of Zee Media's TV channels are carried and seen in South Africa and Africa like Zee TV (DStv 166)

Published by HarperCollins India and written by Pranjal Sharma, The Z Factor is the fascinating memoir of Subhash Chandra, a self-made billionaire businessman who came to Delhi in India at 20 with only 17 rupees in his pocket and is today worth $6.3 billion.

His Zee TV, India's first private Indian TV channel, changed the rules of the TV game and he also started Zee News, India's first private news channel, Zee News.

The Z Factor tells Subhash Chandra's lifestory - from his journey starting in Hisar, a small town in Haryana where his family ran grain mills, to becoming the Indian media mogul of today and how he tried to make his entry into the cut-throat television business where he was considered an interloper and an outsider.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

'Toxic' president Jacob Zuma suddenly a no-show at CNBC Africa's 2016 World Economic Forum debate in Davos; creates awkward embarrassment.


A "toxic" president Jacob Zuma who became a no-show at CNBC Africa's (DStv 410) Davos debate at the 2016 World Economic Forum (WEF) in Switzerland left the ABN run business channel red-faced and scrambling behind-the-scenes to find a suitable replacement when another panelist threatened to pull out.

On Tuesday this week CNBC Africa told the media that president Jacob Zuma would be one of the panelists of a debate entitled "Africa's Next Challenge", moderated by CNBC Africa's Bronwyn Nielsen that will be broadcast live tomorrow (Thursday 21 January from 11:30).

CNBC Africa told the press that the panelists will include South African president Jacob ZumaHailemarain Desalegn (Ethoipia's prime minister), Akinwumi Adesina (African Development Bank president) and Hans Vestberg (Ericcson Sweden president and CEO).

CNBC Africa didn't send out any programming advisory or any publicity update of any changes saying that Jacob Zuma won't be part of the live debate.

Biznews is reporting that president Jacob Zuma withdrew late on Wednesday night, putting CNBC Africa in a flat spin after another panelist then threatened to withdrew as well.

The CNBC Africa event reportedly also had a large number of empty seats.

According to Alec Hogg's Biznews, when South Africa offered finance minister Pravin Gordhan as a replacement, Hailemarain Desalegn threatened to withdrew from the televised debate as well.

Although there's been nothing from CNBC Africa about president Jacob Zuma's absence after saying he would be a part of the debate, Rwanda's president Paul Kagame then appeared in the pace of president Jacob Zuma.

The local Graubunden Canton newspaper Tages Anzeiger on Tuesday published an critical article about president Jacob Zuma with a photo (pictured above) of him looking asleep in a chair saying "A toxic president".

The photo was not one taken at this year's 2016 World Economic Forum.

Very strange, given that CNBC Africa still on Tuesday said president Jacob Zuma would take part in the CNBC Africa WEF debate, is that the presidency today (Thursday) said it told CNBC Africa last week that Jacob Zuma wouldn't be attending CNBC Africa's debate.

"The presidency advance team in Davos also continuously informed the organisers that the president would not participate," said the president's office in a statement.

The presidency also trashed Biznews for the reporting saying in the statement that "we reject the spreading of lies by Alec Hogg, who seems determined to mislead the public about this matter".

Fascinatingly, Reuters reports that when Reuters asked spokesperson Bongani Majola why president Jacob Zuma was a no-show and suddenly not at the CNBC Africa WEF debate, Bongani Majola reacted by saying: "Are you sure about that?"

Morgan Freeman's new 6-part documentary, The Story of God, set to start on National Geographic Channel on DStv on 3 April as a global event series.


Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman's new documentary series, The Story of God that was commissioned last year will start on the National Geographic Channel (DStv 181) in South Africa and Africa on Sunday 3 April at 20:05.

Besides being the presenter of The Story of God, Morgan Freeman is also the executive producer of the 6-part global TV series produced by Revelations Entertainment in which he travels the globe to explore different cultures and religions on a quest to uncover more about the meaning of life and what God means to different people.

Through The Story of God Morgan Freeman wants to understand more about how religion has evolved throughout the course of civilisation, and in turn how religion has shaped the evolution of society - looking at some remarkable similarities among different faiths.

"Over the past few months I've travelled to nearly 20 cities in 7 different countries on a personal journey to find answers to the big mysteries of faith," says Morgan Freeman.


"I've sung the call to prayer at a mosque in Cairo, taken meditation lessons from the Buddhist leader of the oldest line of reincarnating Lamas, discussed Galileo with the head of the Papal Academy of Sciences and explored the first instructions for the afterlife rendered in hieroglyphs inside the pyramids," says Morgan Freeman.


"In some places I found answers and others led to more questions. The constant through it all is that we're all looking to be part of something bigger than us. If there's one thing I've learned, it's that we certainly are," says Morgan Freeman.

Morgan Freeman visited Jerusalem's Wailing Wall, India's Bodhi Tree, Mayan temples in Guatemala and the pyramids of Egypt, and also travelled with archaeologists to places like the 7500 BC Neolithic settlemenÇatalhöyük in Turkey.

"As we put this series together, we sought answers to some of mankind's biggest questions, but in the end what surprised us most was to find how personal those answers were for each of us," says Lori McCreary, co-executive producer.

"We hope The Story of God will open an interfaith dialogue about ideas and values that we all share, not that we disagree on."


Each episode of The Story of God with Morgan Freeman is centred on a different big question about the divine.

Creation – Are there similarities among the religious creation stories from around the world? How do they compare with the scientific theory of the creation of the cosmos and the dawn of civilisation?

Who Is God? How has the perception of God evolved over human history? Is God just an idea, and if so, can we find evidence of a divine presence in our brains?

Evil – What is the root of evil and how has our idea of it evolved over the millennia? Is the devil real? The birth of religion may be inextricably tied to the need to control evil.

Miracles – Are miracles real? For many believers, miracles are the foundation of their faith. Others regard miracles as merely unlikely events on which our brains impose divine meaning. Belief in miracles, however we define them, could be what gives us hope and drives us to turn possibility into reality.

End of Days Violent upheaval and fiery judgment fill popular imagination, but was the lore of apocalypse born out of the strife that plagued the Middle East two millennia ago? The true religious meaning of the apocalypse may not be a global war, but an inner revelation.

Resurrection How have beliefs in the afterlife developed, and how has our reaction to the afterlife changed the way we live this life? Now that science is making such rapid advances, we may soon be confronted with digital resurrection. What will that do to our beliefs?

Kenya threatens to block Netflix, says 'unregulated arrival' of the global video streaming service 'is a threat to our moral values and national security'.


Kenya is threatening to block Netflix two weeks after the "unregulated arrival" of the global video streaming giant's service across Africa, with Kenya now slamming Netflix as "a threat to our moral values and national security" for showing extreme violence and nudity and promoting irresponsible sexual behaviour and drug abuse.

Kenya's Netflix fury comes three months after Nigeria in October 2015 forced satellite pay-TV provider MultiChoice and Discovery Networks International (DNI) to abruptly pull the transgender teen reality show I Am Jazz from its TLC Entertainment (DStv 172) channel for allegedly "promoting undesirable ideas that will offend the Nigerian public".

Since there's only one TLC Entertainment channel feed for the entire Africa, the Nigerian threat and resultant censorship and removal from the schedule mean that the entire Africa was prevented from seeing the show.

Now another African nation is up in arms about global TV content funneled to conservative African viewers who are sensitive over on-air depictions of sex, nudity, language and violence.

The Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) is now threatening to block Netflix in Kenya, saying its "a threat to our moral values and national security" because Netflix fails to conform to Kenya's ratings and classification regulations as provided in law.

Interestingly Netflix content in South Africa has also not been classified by the Film and Publication Board (FPB), although the Naspers rival ShowMax does contain, show and adhere to the FPB classification system for the country.

At a press conference in Nairobi, Bishop Jackson Kipkemoi Kosgei, chairperson of the classification board, said Netflix must be subjected to Kenya's rules and regulations and that Netflix's content is classified and rated on a system that is at odds with Kenya's regulatory and film classification standards.

"The board regards this development as a gross contravention of the laws governing film and broadcast content distribution in Kenya," says the board, noting that "as Kenyans, we therefore need to ask all the right questions about the unregulated arrival and future of Netflix in the country".

According to the East African country's film classification board, content that Netflix deems fine for 13-year olds "contain classifiable elements such as extreme violence, nudity, promotion of irresponsible sexual behaviour, inappropriate language and drug abuse".

"As a progressive country, we cannot afford to be passive recipients of foreign content that could corrupt the moral values of our children and compromise our national security," said Kosgei.

"It will be against our mandate to allow our children to get ruined by inappropriate content in the name of profit".

Netflix in a statement says that its not a traditional broadcaster not an internet television network.

"We empower consumers to make smart viewing choices by providing details on the titles on Netflix, including ratings and episode synopses. We also provide parental controls".

Besides thousands of hours of content that's not available on Netflix in South Africa and the rest of Africa due to licensing rights not being available and making for an already reduced content offering, Netflix has toned down the sex and nudity when it launched in Africa earlier this month, culling a large number of titles that falls under the banner of "erotica" and that contains nudity and sex.

Although Netflix has is able to offer this programming and has no licensing rights impediment as with some other programming, its notable that the streaming service isn't making this content available in Africa.

Thrilling TV special, Homo naledi: Dawn of Humanity, coming to National Geographic Channel on DStv on Sunday 7 February about Dinaledi cave fossil find.


A beautiful and utterly fascinating TV special, Homo Naledi: Dawn of Humanity, is coming to the National Geographic Channel (DStv 181) on Sunday 7 February at 20:05, going behind the scenes of the groundbreaking discovery and excavation of the extinct hominin species at the Dinaledi cave system at the Cradle of Humankind.

Homo naledi: Dawn of Humanity follows the elaborate excavation process and uses special effects to illustrate where homo naledi fits into paleoanthropology.

The great documentary special directed and produced by Graham Townsley, tells the tale of how cave explorers found the bones and then alerted the paleoanthropologist Lee Berger of the University of the Witwatersrand who realised that he needed to act immediately after seeing the first photos of what was found in the almost inaccessible Dinaledi Chamber of the Rising Star cave system.


Assembling a special team of experts, so far over 1 500 bones have been found, helping with a greater understanding of mankind's origins and development over millions of years.

The provocative TV special narrated by Jay O. Sanders takes viewers deep inside the treacherous descent of the cave, shows all the enigmatic finds, and uses wonderful graphics to explain what it all means and how it all fits together.

Homo naledi: Dawn of Humanity was filmed as the discoveries were made and the special shows how the ancient bones from so long ago could help to fill in a mysterious million year gap in the fossil record of mankind's evolution - while revealing clues about what makes us human.

'It was a nightmare' says Miss Colombia as Steve Harvey offers an emotional on-air apology on his talk show: 'I just want to say how sorry I am'.


"It was a nightmare," said Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutierrez when she appeared on Steve Harvey's talk show as he offered an emotional on-air apology after mistakenly announcing her as the winner of Miss Universe last month, now telling her: "I just want to say how sorry I am".

"You're the one person that I really wanted to talk to," said an emotional Steve Harvey. "Because of a mistake I made, I cast you into a spotlight or place that I never intended to. That I would not want to happen to anybody."

"I just want to say how sorry I am. I'm beyond sorry for what happened that night and that it was you."

"It was like a nightmare. I was watching the videos and I couldn't believe that that happened to me. I needed time with my family. To calm down. To think what I'm going to say now, what I'm going to do now."

"I'm ready to move on. This is our destiny," she said.


"You keep making mistakes - it's 'Aria-da", nor Ariana," she told Steve Harvey

"You have to learn how to read cards," she said.

Ariadna Cutierrez told Steve Harvey she initially laughed and thought he was going to be making a joke. "You know, like Oprah: 'You're Miss Universe! And you're Miss Universe! Everyone is Miss Universe!"

"My concern was for the two of you. It was horrible," said Steve Harvey.

How is Nigeria going to react to E! Entertainment on DStv's new reality show, Just Jillian, with Jillian Michaels and her lesbian lover raising their kids?


It's going to be interesting to see how Nigerians reacts to E! Entertainment's (DStv 124) new upcoming reality show, Just Jillian, starting at the end of this month in which fitness trainer Gillian Michaels and her lesbian lover Heidi Rhoades raise their children Lukensia and Phoenix.

Nigeria wants to clamp down and censor all television that it deems undesirable and offensive - instead of just not watching.

Two months ago myopic Nigerians and Nigeria's broadcasting regulator, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) forced MultiChoice and Discovery Networks International to to pull its scheduled and upcoming transgender teen reality show I Am Jazz, off the TLC Entertainment (DStv 172) schedule.

Since there's only one TLC Entertainment channel feed from Discovery Networks International for the entire Africa, angry Nigerians slamming MultiChoice and Discovery for a programme that will be "promoting undesirable ideas that will offend the Nigerian public", caused continent wide television censorship.

It meant that no other countries - including South Africa - could see I Am Jazz just because of Nigerian complaints in October.

NBCUniversal International Networks that distributes E! Entertainment in South Africa and across Africa on MultiChoice's DStv also only has one channel feed for the continent.

If Nigerians went as far as started a petition over I Am Jazz, it will be interesting to see what Nigerians make of Just Jillian.

In the show Jillian Michaels, the former trainer of The Biggest Loser who happens to be gay, is followed in her new reality show showing her life with her lesbian lover as they raise their two children, their adopted daughter Lukensia from Haiti and their son Phoenix.

Just Jillian, set to start on E! Entertainment (DStv 124) on Sunday 31 January at 21:00 "takes an unfiltered and authentic look at this dynamic and surprisingly sensitive superstar's private world and family," according to E!'s programming material.

Wendy Williams on BET says 'the black family is weak'; tells audience 'don't have babies with the wrong man. Men, stop leaving your women to raise'.


The American talk show host Wendy Williams of The Wendy Williams Show on BET (DStv 129) weighed in on Martin Luther King Day that was on Monday in the United States, telling her studio audience and viewers that "the black family is weak".

Wendy Williams decided to share her thoughts and views on family values with her studio audience.

The weekday episode was broadcast on Viacom International Media Networks Africa's (VIMN Africa) BET channel on MultiChoice's DStv satellite pay-TV platform in South Africa and Africa on Tuesday.

Striking a more serious tone than her usually frivolous take on pop culture stories and her commentary on celebrity news, Wendy Williams weighed in on Martin Luther Day and shared some of her family value views, after asking her audience if they think Martin Luther King "would be happy with today".

After her audience shouted "no", Wendy Williams said "agree".

"This police brutality has got to stop. The racial profiling has got to stop," said Wendy Williams.

"You know, quite frankly, the black family is weak. And we need to take accountability as a people, people - my people - you know."


'Don't have babies with the wrong man. Men, stop leaving your women to raise. And, and what is going on?"

"I believe that even before anything, you know, it all starts with the family. And if there is no family, then what do we have? So we can blame a lot of people, but lets start at home," Wendy Williams told her applauding audience.

After that she returned to her usual more pop culture topics, discussing the new Real Housewives of Potomac.

Former Dr. Phil staffer sues Dr. Phil McGraw for alleged wrongful imprisonment, holding 300 employees in a locked room and threatening them over leaks to the press.


A former staffer at the Dr. Phil talk show seen on SABC2 is suing Dr. Phil McGraw for alleged wrongful imprisonment after he held 300 employees in a locked room, penned in by security guards, as he allegedly threatened them over ongoing media leaks to the press.

The Dr. Phil show declined to comment for the story first reported by America's People magazine  on Thursday.

Leah Rothman, who worked as a segment director on Dr. Phil for 12 years since 2003 says in her lawsuit that she quit in April 2015 due to a hostile work environment after she complained about what was done to staff on the show with the Dr. Phil human resources executive month earlier.

A month earlier, in March 2015, Leah Rothman was on leave and says in her lawsuit she was called in to work at the CBS production company with 300 Dr. Phil employees who were pushed into a room with security guards, their phones taken away, and then threatened that those leaking information from the show to the media will be "f-ed' with.

Leah Rothman alleges that Dr. Phil McGraw threatened and accused his own staff of leaking information to the media while they were locked in a room with security guards and their cellphones taken away.

"If you f- with me, I'll f- with you," Dr. Phil McGraw said to Dr. Phil staff while they were locked in the room, according to the lawsuit, with Leah Rothman saying Dr. Phil McGraw appeared to take pleasure in scaring the people who worked for him.

Later in the month she went to a CBS HR executive to complain about the locked-in meeting but a follow-up meeting never took place, with Leah Rothman saying her whistler blower complaint was ignored.

She says she felt so emotionally stressed that she was forced to quit working for Dr. Phil a few weeks after the threatening locked room encounter.

MultiChoice in Africa struggling to grow DStv subscribers due to weakening currencies as pay-TV households move to cheaper digital terrestrial television (DTT).


MultiChoice in Africa is struggling with the perception that the DStv satellite pay-TV service is too expensive with DStv subscribers in Africa, outside of South Africa, down as pay-TV households switch to cheaper digital terrestrial television (DTT) offerings due to big local currency devaluations, according to a new report.

According to the 5th edition of the Digital TV Sub-Saharan Africa Forecasts 2016 will be a tough year for pay-TV operators like MultiChoice in Africa.

According to Simon Murray, author of the report for Digital TV Research, DStv appears too expensive given the weakening of Africa's currencies, with pay-TV households switching to cheaper DTT offerings.

MultiChoice in Africa had 2.24 million DStv subscribers outside of South Africa by September 2015 - down from 2.56 million six months earlier and down from 2.36 million a year earlier.

According to Digital TV Research estimates, this 2.24 million DStv subscribers fell to 2.16 million DStv subscribers by the end of 2015 and will fall further in 2016.

"DStv appears more expensive to locals. To try and attract new subscribers, DStv has substantially reduced its decoder prices."

"DStv's problems stem mostly from its rights to exclusive premium content, especially sports. Currency devaluation in most sub-Saharan countries hit DStv hard. Exclusive content rights for premium content such as English Premier League (EPL) soccer are usually paid for in US dollars."

"MultiChoice has been compelled to increase its local currency DStv subscription fees to cover the shortfall due to devaluation."

 As a result, DStv appears more expensive to locals. To try and attract new subs, DStv has substantially reduced its decoder prices.”

More African pay-TV households are switching to DTT - up from 18.7% (7.9 million) in 2010 with digital television penetration that is estimated to reach 99.9% in 35 African countries by 2021 and 74.7 million homes.

By the end of 2015 complete digital terrestrial television migration was achieved in Gabon, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.

By the end of 2016 another 6 African countries are expected to complete its switch from analogue to digital terrestrial television - but not South Africa which is lagging far behind the rest of the African continent with its commercial DTT switch-over process.

According to the research, of the 16.91 million pay-TV subscribers at the end of 2015, 10.66 million were satellite pay-TV subscribers and 5.64 million were pay DTT.

Africa's pay-TV subscriber total will more than double to 33.23 million by 2021, with satellite pay-TV subscribers contributing 15.88 million and pay DTT another 14.85 million.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

INTERVIEW. Fashionista Ayanda Nhlapo on her new [ED] show on DStv: 'I want Ayanda's Fashion House to be what I didn't get growing up'.


Fashionista and TV presenter Ayanda Nhlapo, also known as Queen YaYa, just started her own weekly show dedicated to all things fashion on [ED] (DStv 190), Ayanda's Fashion House.

Ayanda Nhlapo who previously presented Corner Talks on [ED] and studied drama and fashion design, now takes the reigns with a local dedicated fashion show that will be seen in South Africa and across the African continent.

What do you want to achieve with Ayanda's Fashion House?
Ayanda: I hope to inspire and teach people through Ayanda's Fashion House.


Why do you think its important for a dedicated, local, weekly show about fashion to be on television for South Africa and Africa?
Ayanda: The fashion industry is a very untapped industry and a lot of information is only received through going to fashion school or if you're in the fashion scene.
I feel that on TV we don't really have a show that is fully about fashion, and I feel that it's very important because I could be helping someone choose their career, so something like this is definitely needed.


Will you be talking to emerging new designers or people entering the fashion scene, will you be chatting to established fashion icons, looking for new talent? 
How are you going to find the weekly guests? And who is it that you want to showcase to South Africa and the rest of Africa?
Ayanda: On the show I speak to all kinds of people, so I get to chat to different kinds of people - from students and lecturers to business experts and up-and-comers.
Especially I want to give exposure to students and up and coming new talent.
I feel that they need to be on Ayanda's Fashion House so they get to be on a platform where they get exposure and people can get to know about them.


What do you think has led you to this moment, to Ayanda Nhlapo doing Ayanda's Fashion House on [ED] and to get to this point and what do you want to be with it?
Ayanda: You know what, when I grew up I always knew that I wanted to be in fashion - whether it be a model or designer - just to be in fashion.

If I grew up watching a show like Ayanda's Fashion House, I probably would have chosen my career sooner, and I would have had an advanced fashion knowledge. So for me, I think that's exactly what I'm doing with this show.

I'm going to give back, I want Ayanda's Fashion House to be what I didn't get growing up. The show is for those people currently growing up and want to be in the fashion industry.


And your advice for people about following their dreams and their passion even when it seems impossible and difficult whether in the fashion world or not?
Ayanda: My advice is never ever give up on your dreams. If you want something, go for it and let nothing stop you.


Ayanda's Fashion House is on Mondays at 18:55 on [ED] (DStv 190), with a repeat on Saturdays.


ALSO READ: [ED] on DStv launches local weekly fashion show, Ayanda's Fashion House, with vibey fashionista Ayanda Nhlapo.

[ED] on DStv launches local weekly fashion show, Ayanda's Fashion House, with vibey fashionista, Ayanda Nhlapo as a new 'signature show'.


The edutainment channel [ED] (DStv 190) has launched a brand-new, locally produced weekly fashion show, Ayanda's Fashion House with Ayanda Nhlapo on Mondays at 18:55 as a brand new "signature show" designed to bring more edge and local relevance to the Urban Brew produced TV channel.

In Ayanda's Fashion House, with repeated on [ED] on Saturdays, fashionista Ayanda Nhlapo who previously presented Corner Talks on [ED] and who studied drama and fashion design, talks all things fashion.

ALSO READ: Interview: Ayanda Nhlapo on her new [ED] show on DStv: "I want Ayanda's Fashion House to be what I didn't what I didn't get growing up":

It's the first time since Nicky Greenwall's cancelled Style Report on eNCA (DStv 403) that South African television, in fact Africa - since [ED] is seen across Africa on MultiChoice's DStv and GO platforms in 49 countries - can tune in to a locally relevant weekly style programme with a dedicated focus on fashion.

Ayanda’s Fashion House is part of a new series of entrepreneurial concept shows rolled out by [ED] in line with the Kagiso Media TV channel's vision to be more engaging, more relevant, more local and to inspire young people.

[ED] is one of 6 TV channels that Urban Brew manages.

Each of the 13 episodes of Ayanda's Fashion House will focus on a different aspect of the industry, from the actual fashion design, to blogging, trend forecasting and fashion shows. Guests include a number of fashion industry personalities, ranging from Gert Johan Coetzee, Lucilla Booyzen, Dion Chang, Trevor Stuurman and Felipe Mazibuko to Joelle Kayembe.

"Viewers are invited to sit in on her conversations with industry experts, they're invited to boost their business savvy together with her and they're invited to share in all the insider tips that she gleans," says Trish Taylor, CEO of Urban Brew.

"Ayanda's Fashion House not only equips other aspirant designers, but will inspire them too," says Trish Taylor.

"It's all about fashion, but it's more than fashion and that's what I'm looking forward to. It's also about a very rich and compelling story so it's certainly not to be missed. Ayanda Nhlapo is a vibrant, determined and gutsy young lady who did not allow any circumstances to get in her way of fashion or success," says Trish Taylor.

"We're going to hear about her story and perseverance as well as interesting insider tips and all about the fashion industry woven into a beautiful tapestry of Ayanda's Fashion House. We're looking forward for the show going from strength to strength."

"Ayanda's Fashion House fits in perfectly with the vision of [ED]. The vision of [ED] is one of engaging and inspiring young people who are embarking on their particular career paths. So this particular signature programme speaks strongly to the positioning of [ED]," says Trish Taylor.


"I was born in Springs in the East Rand in 1991," says Ayanda Nhlapo who went to primary school in Brakpan and then to the National School of the Arts to study dramatic arts. After high school she went to study film, but wasn't really happy.

She took a gap year and joined an agency and started selling vintage clothing. "For me that's when I got into fashion and started realising my passion".

I took part in a series called Young Designers and won the third season. Those were all the signs that were leading me to where I am today. I decided to study fashion design and after that I got the opportunity to be the presenter of Ayanda's Fashion House".

"Ayanda's Fashion House is a show that gives insight about the different facets of the fashion industry. Being the anchor of the show, I'm so honoured because I get to learn so much - and I also get to teach people through interviewing guests like up and coming designers or fashion experts."

"I feel that if I grew up watching a show like this, I would have learnt so much - I would maybe have picked up on my love of fashion sooner, and I would have had advance fashion knowledge," says Ayanda Nhlapo.

"Ayanda's Fashion House is a show that is definitely, definitely needed. It's a platform for different voices - it's a platform for all kinds of voices from the fashion world".

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Second season of Pawn Stars South Africa will start on History on 29 March; Cecily Pavoncelli joins the team as more intriguing local artefacts surface.


The second season of Pawn Stars South Africa will start on History (DStv 186) on Tuesday 29 March at 20:30 with the new season of the local pawn shop show that will see intriguing artefacts ranging from bronze hands and something from Nadine Gordimer to sketches from the Zambezia movie.

The second season of the Rapid Blue produced show sees the addition of new team member Cecily Pavoncelli to Pawn Stars SA, and its her job to hunt for some valuable items for the Cash Inn pawn shop in Johannesburg that owner Roy Peretz can possibly end up selling for even more money.

Besides Roy Peretz and Cecily Pavoncelli, partners Eytan and Liel and assistants Irene and Solly also return.

They once again haggle with customers who want to pawn or sell a range of often strange and unique items.

In the second season of Pawn Stars South Africa on History viewers will see an original bronze casting of heart doctor Professor Chris Barnard's hands exchange hands, an interesting piece of literary history from the Nobel Prize winning author Nadine Gordimer come up, as well as original art from the South African film Zambezia.

Other items include maps and firearms, as well as items related to South Africa's liberation struggle over the last 50 years.

"We are absolutely thrilled to be working on a second series of Pawn Stars SA for A+E Networks," says Kee-Leen Irvine of Rapid Blue.


"We're really proud of our first season, which has not only been shown in South Africa but also in the United Kingdom, Canada and Romania, receiving enthusiastic feedback from far and wide".

CNBC Africa and Bronwyn Nielsen in Davos for the 2016 World Economic Forum (WEF); Eleni Giokos also there covering for CNN International's Marketplace Africa.

CNBC Africa (DStv 410) will again be covering the 2016 World Economic Forum (WEF) with anchor Bronwyn Nielsen in Davos Switzerland from Wednesday, 20 January, with CNN International's (DStv 401) Eleni Giokos also there to cover the annual gathering for CNN Marketplace Africa.

CNBC Africa says the business channel has a seasoned editorial team deployed in Davos, Switzerland and that CNBC Africa will be crossing to the 2016 WEF throughout the 3-day gathering, interviewing some of the world's top business leaders and global thinkers on the state of the world in 2016.

Tomorrow, on Wednesday 20 January, CNBC Africa will host a discussion at the Grischa Hotel in Davos with Bronwyn Nielsen, senior anchor and executive director, as the moderator and which will be broadcast on CNBC Africa.

This panel will include Ben Kruger (Standard Bank joint-CEO), Vassi Naidoo (Nedbank executive chairperson), Nicky Newton-King (JSE CEO) and Geoffrey Qhena (IDC CEO).

On Thursday, 21 January, from 11:30 to 12:30 CNBC Africa will moderate another debate, entitled "Africa's Next Challenge" also moderated by Bronwyn Nielsen that will be broadcast live.

The panelists will include South African president Jacob Zuma, Hailemarain Desalegn (Ethoipia's prime minister), Akinwumi Adesina (African Development Bank president) and Hans Vestberg (Ericcson Sweden president and CEO).

CNN International's (DStv 401) Eleni Giokos is also in the snow-covered Davos where she's been several times before and will be covering the event primarily for CNN's Marketplace Africa.

In a new Davos Diaries video Eleni Giokos says she is once again in Davos to cover "the African story" and what the message is this year for the African continent.

"Look out for our coverage in Marketplace Africa. I will also be keeping a close watch on the Greek prime minister, Alexi Tsipras - I know he's here to meet with a few investors, and of course the IMF chief as well, Christine Lagarde," says Eleni Giokos.

Gareth Cliff files urgent court application against M-Net and Idols; says M-Net was racist to fire him, 'being abused as sacrificial lamb'.


The fired Idols judge Gareth Cliff has filed an urgent court interdict against M-Net to reinstate him as Idols judge on the 12th season of the reality show on Mzansi Magic (DStv 161) set to start nationwide auditions on 29 January and says M-Net was racist for firing him and that he is "being abused as the proverbial sacrificial lamb".

Gareth Cliff in court papers also slams Naspers - of which M-Net is part - for how it supported and promoted the racist policy of Apartheid, calling Naspers "propaganda machinery".

Gareth Cliff is suing M-Net for R25 million - R5 million for defamation of character and R20 million for breach of contract in the 83-page court application that was filed today.

Gareth Cliff also wants M-Net to retract "harmful remarks" made in their 9 January 2016 statement, for M-Net to make an unconditional apology, and to cover all his court costs.

In court papers Gareth Cliff slams M-Net for its "persistent attempt to fake morality for selfish commercial expediency and political cowardice". 

According to his legal team, Gareth Cliff is demanding that "he be reinstated, and if they don't do that he intends to stop the Idols auditions which are starting on 29 January. He also wants to clear his name and is looking to claim for damages", says his lawyer.

In papers filed at the High Court on Johannesburg on Tuesday, Gareth Cliff says "M-Net had an unlawful knee-jerk reaction in misguided protection, at my expense, of its commercial interests, which were not in fact under any threat". 

The court application also reveals that M-Net paid Gareth Cliff R356 000 in 2015 for the 11th season of Idols.

Gareth Cliff has slammed M-Net as being "opportunistic", saying "the singling out as an easy target is, ironically, an exhibition of racism" and that he is "being abused as the proverbial sacrificial lamb".

"The response by [M-Net] in axing me was quite peculiar not only because of its inconsistency with how other judges had been dealt with, but also because M-Net itself had for many years been able to withstand criticism of racism and, more recently, gender discrimination due to either the low number of black winners and/or the total absence to date of a female winner," says Gareth Cliff in his court filing.

Gareth Cliff apparently forgot that former Idols winners include females like Anke Pietrangeli (2003), Karin Kortje (2005), Jody Williams (2007) and Sasha-Lee Jacobs who became a joint-winner after 1009's M-Net's Idols voting scandal.

Gareth Cliff slams Naspers in court papers,saying the media giant had "put a lot of decisive effort into building, promoting and supporting the hateful, racist and cruel policy known as apartheid", saying Naspers was part of the "highly effective propaganda machinery" and that Naspers is "the last people to lecture me about the pains of our past".

The massive R25 million legal case mounted by Gareth Cliff represents the biggest single law suit against M-Net from an individual entertainer ever and will dull what is M-Net's 30th anniversary this year in October since the pay-TV broadcaster started 3 decades ago in 1986.

Advocate Dali Mpofu, the former SABC CEO, will now represent Gareth Cliff in his case against Idols and the pay-TV broadcaster.


Meanwhile pressure is also building on M-Net and [SIC Entertainment producing the upcoming 12th season to delay the start, since auditions will start in just over a week.

M-Net spokesperson Nondumiso Mabece says "at this stage we are not able to comment further on this matter until the legal team that is handling it is able to advise us accordingly on the next steps".

M-Net told Gareth Cliff last Friday that he's fired over social media comments related to the racist Penny Sparrow debate that ignited a firestorm in South Africa.

After the real estate agent called black people "monkeys", Gareth Cliff remarked that "People really don't understand free speech at all."

Last Saturday M-Net issued a press statement that Gareth Cliff has been dismissed from the M-Net (DStv 101) and Mzansi Magic (DStv 161) show over "insensitivity" he's shown in his remarks.

M-Net raised eyebrows getting rid of Gareth Cliff when it M-Net executives didn't fire or sanction the other Idols judge, Somizi Mhlongo, for racist comments that that Idols judge made at the end of December.


Gareth Cliff last week said being on Idols and being an Idols judge on the M-Net and Mzansi Magic show was only a hobby, described it as "an extramural activity" and that "I have felt my time was up a good couple of years ago".

Also last week Gareth Cliff said on his online show at CliffCentral that 'A lot of people are saying I'm going to take them [M-Net and Idols] to court and stuff which is nonsense".

Now he wants R25 million from M-Net for no longer participating in the extramural activity, and is taking M-Net to court.

REVIEW. eNews Direct on e.tv is an ugly, awful, disjointed, technically flawed, hashtagging rehashing vacuum of frenetic nothingness.


What was this? No, really ... what was this?

e.tv dumped its eNews Prime Time news bulletin and replaced it on Monday evening with what can only be described as one of the most awful, technically terrible and most cringe-worthy pieces of television trashnews since the disastrous launch of ANN7 (DStv 405).

eNews Direct on e.tv is literally the worse piece of South African produced TV news I watched since the jaw-droppingly bad launch of ANN7.

Have the people at e.tv, eNews and eNCA ever heard of the word "rehearsal"? Even more importantly, have they no shame?

If this is what "TV news" looks like after a rehearsal or dry-runs, people really should get fired.

eNews Direct is inexcusably bad and very poorly executed and e.tv is doing a big disservice to viewers with this misdirected mess.

eNews Direct that started on Monday night was filled with wrong camera cuts, awful and erratic camerawork, a news reader who looked more interested in her tablet, numerous cringe-inducing mistakes, a dumbed down weather map, a lot of stuff that completely didn't work and was an utter disorganised mess.

eNews Direct, e.tv's extremely disappointing latest iteration of a news bulletin is an abominable mess - it's hard to believe that people who've been doing news for years are responsible for this abject failure which feels like a total disservice to viewers when it comes to news.

If you've ever seen a kitten that got into a basket of wool, you will have an idea of what e.tv's dismal eNews Direct is: a messy and disorganised heap of stuff that doesn't gel, doesn't make sense and that is worsened by numerous human errors and technical mistakes.

Watching the first episode of e.tv's eNews Direct it was as if the SABC suddenly grew a parallel news service besides SABC News and did it in red and blue - but just as bad.


eNews Direct is painful to watch - as if e.tv with it wants to punish free-to-air viewers for not having DStv and watching eNCA (DStv 403).

It's as if e.tv is now signalling that people who submit themselves to watching this "news lite" mess with ugly social media latch on's, actually deserve it because they are too stupid to expect or deserve more, or too cheap to watch TV news on a pay-TV channel.

Universities are now simply "unives" according to e.tv and eNews Direct's lower-third banner.

Add the (other unintentional?) "mistakes" of e.tv and eNews Direct showing you things like competitor ANN7's Tweet front and centre, or the SABC News channel on a background monitor, and you will struggle to believe that what you see is actually really being produced and broadcast by e.tv backed with the expertise of the eNCA brand.

The structure, the content, the delivery, the shaky camerawork, the awkward angles, the anchor, the presentation, the script, the "studio", the colours - basically everything about eNews Direct on e.tv is extremely off-putting and just very wrong.

eNews Direct on e.tv is an ugly, disjointed, technically flawed mess, rehashing hashtagged news for an imagined viewership that must be... what? Morons?

Awkward anchor Dudu Ramela behaves like your irritating dinner guest or family member who makes it blatantly clear that she is more interested in her handheld device than you. Did she read her news script beforehand or just showed up to focus or where she would be standing for each of the 1 500 newsroom segment changes?

More interested in counting her lines, Dudu Ramela will look up and talk to you, but she doesn't really want to talk to you because her tablet is more important. That's the eNews Direct vibe, because the news must now be trendy and "trending".

eNews Direct will now even do "Entertainment" - but sadly even that "news" was all old news inside the new bulletin that is supposedly updating you on what's "trending". The (hashtag) "GarethCliff" was all old news, instead of eNews Direct giving viewers new information and facts.

Why is the respected eNCA anchor and social media editor Gareth Edwards even in and part of this downmarket eNews Direct mess?

Why does neither the cameramen with their poor camerawork, editors or director(s) seem to know what's happening next and what the flow is?

Why does this confusing half hour jump from this to that to sport to business to whatever else? Why is the quality of the camerawork and literally every single other element that makes up this eNews Direct bulletin so terribly weak and bad?

Where is the actual news content and the substance? eNews Direct comes across as a vacuum-like bubble of frenetic nothingness - giving viewers more of nothing and less of everything that the eNews Prime Time bulletin offered before.

What a waste to watch.

OPINION. After its Andrew Barnes anchor misstep eNCA just damaged its credibility further - not by removing him but being opaque about what actions it took afterwards.


Everybody makes mistakes but eNCA (DStv 403) as a TV news channel just made another unnecessary and avoidable mistake by refusing to be transparent about another mistake - a bad decision for a product where credibility and viewer trust is paramount.

Two weeks after eNCA's (DStv 403) NewsDay anchor Andrew Barnes (who I personally think is excellent at his job) got caught up in an unfortunate on-air incident the midday anchor of the Sabido-run TV news channel on DStv will be back on air on Wednesday.

The problem and further damage to eNCA's credibility is the channel's flat-out refusal to say what specific punishment was handed out to Andrew Barnes.

It now places eNCA on the same level as Infinity Media's ANN7 (DStv 405). ANN7 also wants to stay silent about its own multiple disciplinary hearings and the specific outcomes - although it is news, with the result that the lack of being open damages its standing and credibility as a news brand.

All eNCA wants to say - feels to say - is that Andrew Barnes was "sanctioned".

eNCA says "the nature of the sanction remains a matter between eNCA and Andrew Barnes."

That's funny, hollow and completely fake since the original transgression was between Andrew Barnes and the viewers.

Andrew Barnes' perceived on-air error was a public one. Yet eNCA wants to hide the specifics of what specifically happened to the anchor from this "public".

That damages the implied transactional and unspoken relational concord between eNCA and its viewer.

It is what is called a trust deficit: When your in the news and the perceived truth business, but you want to be secretive and obtuse yourself, it doesn't align with your brand and the values that you supposedly say you stand and are for.

eNCA wants the DStv viewer to trust it, to trust its brand, to trust what the person who is on eNCA is saying - in this case anchor Andrew Barnes.

Andrew Barnes made what was perceived by some viewers and eNCA management to be a mistake. Disciplinary action followed. But now eNCA doesn't want to be as open, transparent, upfront and honest with the exact viewer that eNCA admitted it it failed.

That sadly dents eNCA's credibility.

Let's say a car manufacturer is exposed as having a defective part or discovers a problem.

The car manufacturer admits it and says corrective steps will be taken. There are recalls, there's communication as to what exactly is wrong, went wrong, why - and then - what exactly is being done and has been done.

Imagine the car manufacturer just remains silent and just says "the broken part has been fixed. The nature of the sanction remains a matter between the car manufacturer and the part supplier".

Now the car manufacturer wants people to trust it that, yes, the parts and cars are fixed.

It would be ridiculous. People simply won't trust that it really has been fixed without any specifics as to what exactly happened.

Yet that is precisely what eNCA is now doing.

eNCA wants DStv subscribers to continue to trust it in blind faith after a mistake but isn't willing to be open to those consumers of its news service as to how it specifically responded and reacted and what specific steps it took to "fix" or address the mistake that happened.

eNCA just want to say there was a "sanction". Well, well done, eNCA, that dent you see is the one you caused yourself to your car with the paint that's not called metallic red but credibility.

While Andrew Barnes as anchor is one of the public faces of eNCA and part of the image of eNCA, the TV news channel wants to be "private" when it should be open and forthcoming about a failure.

It damages the trust people can have in the eNCA brand and makes it difficult for people watching eNCA to have trust in its news product if you can't make, for yourself, any reasonable assessment as to how eNCA responded in terms of what action was taken.

It's disingenuous that eNCA reports, and wants to report on news like the insider details of other disciplinary hearings, or meetings or discussions but then slams shut when the spotlight is turned on itself.

In the process eNCA undermines its own credibility by not taking its viewers into its confidence.

I don't think its necessary for eNCA to give the whole truth - but the mere basics about exactly how its anchor Andrew Barnes was "sanctioned" would have engendered a feeling in viewers and stakeholders of eNCA being really open and trustworthy.

Unfortunately eNCA chose not to and its interesting that the news channel that is in the news business doesn't appear to understand this or have sensitivity to this aspect.

You can't be discretionary public the one moment, and then elect to suddenly be discretionary private the next when it suits you - especially not when you're in the media - or even when you are the media.

The subtext eNCA is communicating (by not communicating) is that it won't be open about the specifics of its errors - even when asked - like what happened to an anchor who made a mistake. Yet eNCA wants you to trust it in whatever else it reports as news.

Yes. eNCA damaged its reputation of fairness. It was a mistake.

But now eNCA damaged its credibility in a preventable mistake by not being as open as it should be about its first mistake.

After publicly removing him, eNCA refuses to tell viewers exactly what anchor Andrew Barnes' punishment is; anchor will return on Wednesday to NewsDay.


eNCA (DStv 403) refuses to tell its viewers what punishment the Sabido-run TV news channel meted out to its NewsDay anchor Andrew Barnes.

eNCA says Andrew Barnes will be back on air on Wednesday, 20 January after being off-air for two weeks, but is silent on what specific steps the "sanction" taken against the removed midday anchor entails.

The TV news channel on MultiChoice's DStv satellite pay-TV platform removed Andrew Barnes with immediate effect as NewsDay anchor on 7 January and started disciplinary proceedings after he quipped on-air about the minister of basic education, Angie Motshekga, that "maybe someone should have a word with the basic education minister on how to pronounce the word epitome".

eNCA management said Andrew Barnes' comment was "not only hurtful and unnecessary but deeply insensitive".

Andrew Barnes apologised following the social media firestorm that engulfed eNCA, and also did an on-air apology as part of an eNCA report on the matter.

After Andrew Barnes was publicly removed from eNCA airwaves, viewers are left in the dark as to the specific nature of what actions were instituted against the anchor in the disciplinary process.

Despite a lack of what specific actions were taken against Andrew Barnes, eNCA tells TV with Thinus that it wants viewers to be confident that it dealt fairly with the matter.

"An internal disciplinary process has been conducted" says eNCA, saying "the sanction is a matter of privacy between the company and Andrew Barnes".

"eNCA is confident that the process has been dealt with expeditiously and fairly. The company will not tolerate any actions that are considered not to be fair and accurate commentary".

In a statement earlier, eNCA only says Andrew Barnes "co-operated fully and has been sanctioned".

"To date he has been a model employee without any previous transgressions. He has shown remorse for his conduct and the company also accepted his internal apology. The nature of the sanction remains a matter between eNCA and Andrew Barnes."