Smart Africa TV: Egyptian TV satirist Bassem Youssef on fear as a weapon and satire as antidote

by Russell Southwood (@BalancingActAfr) Speaking at the Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum, Egyptian TV satirist Bassem Youssef, creator of the B+ Show (on You Tube) and the TV show Al-Bernameg (roughly translated as The Programme) talks about: using humor and laughter to combat religious fascism and authoritarianism; creating a media that respects people’s intelligence; not buying into the everyday life of propaganda; and satire as a weapon to dissect lies.

Mthatha in surprise bid to host Loeries

Mthatha city councillor Golden Magrede has announced that the city is preparing a bid to liberate the Loerie Awards, an annual advertising award backslap, held hostage by the City of Cape Town these past several years.

“It’s time South African advertising plucks its head out of the Madam’s backside,” said Magrede, in an apparent reference to Western Cape Premier Helen Zille. “This is a thriving city, part of the beating heart of Africa, and we believe it is in the best interest of the South African advertising industry to come here and rediscover its roots in our fertile soil.”

“We also produce great weed in vast quantities,” says Magrede, “I heard Cape Town ran out of blow this year. That stuff is bad news – the trend is towards organic products – another point ad execs need to consider when they look at our bid.”

Jerm: neither left-wing nor right-wing but the middle-finger

by Herman Manson (@marklives) When the cup is half full, its hard being a satirist, as Jeremy Nell, who works under the name Jerm, found out.

Nell, until recently the cartoonist for The New Age, had his contract terminated by editor Moegsien Williams because, says Nell, his political cartoons were, according to Williams at least, not “aligned with the paper’s vision and mission.”

The New Age, funded by the politically connected Gupta family, launched “to focus on the positive side of news,” according to its own website, and this has been construed by critics as being pro-government. Williams is the paper’s fourth editor in two years.

Nell says initially news of his effective firing from The New Age didn’t generate much attention from mainstream media (there was quite a bit of outrage in social media circles) until Zapiro took up his cause in a cartoon that takes the mickey out of the New Age editors.

Spoof ad takes aim at Julius Malema’s tax troubles

ZANews, the satirical puppet TV and web show that comments on South Africa’s news and political landscape, has released a spoof of the latest SA Revenue TV commercial, this time featuring Julius Malema and playing up his tax troubles . The show is produced by Thierry Cassuto and cartoonist Jonathan Shapiro.

Creative Director Wears Beret to Disciplinary Hearing

Arthur Groenewald, Creative Director at TBW Smith Jones Wallace Broadbent and Ndimande, arrived at his disciplinary this Tuesday hearing wearing a black beret. Questioned by media journalists about his head gear Groenewald stated the item was ‘in line with his life as a conceptual revolutionary.’

Silver Loerie Winner Found

The advertising industry breathed a collective sigh of relief when copywriter Jason Smythe-Wallace returned to his desk at agency CBA Ford Smith Jones and Broadbent. Although the agency has declined to comment on Smythe-Wallace’s whereabouts over the last few weeks, reliable sources have indicated that the emerging young talent had been languishing in a remote North-West jail, one of several creatives caught on the wrong side of Loerie law.

Homelessness On the Up and Up in Fast Food Advertising

Industry rumour has it that emerging fast food chain, Smaaklik, is set to launch a new ad campaign that pushes the use of the homeless in fast food advertising to new levels. Capitalising on the success of a Debonairs campaign a few years back, which cunningly leveraged iconic imagery of homeless people to sell pizzas, the Smaaklik campaign will feature happy consumers scoffing hamburgers and chips in a park full of starving homeless people.

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