What would young Namibians like to see when switching on the TV and how could meaningful and engaging content be provided for them? These questions were raised at the Youth Media Festival, which, in the framework of the German Weeks, was organized by the Deutsche Welle Akademie in collaboration with the Goethe Centre and the College of the Arts.
At the Youth Media Festival it was mainly media students from the Polytechnic and the College of the Arts, as well as media producers from the NBC, who gathered at the auditorium at the Goethe Centre to discuss media production for young audiences in several interactive sessions.
The topics covered “Content vs. Technical perfection”, “Topic selection” and “User-generated content”. As a foundation and inspiration for the discussions, films from last year’s Prix Jeunesse International film festival were screened.
This festival is organized every two years by the Prix Jeunesse Foundation. Video and film producers from all over the world are invited to send in their most accomplished works. These are then evaluated by youth and adult adjudicators from across the globe. Last year, 20 students from Namibia formed part of the international youth jury.
At the local Youth Media Festival at the Goethe Centre, six members of the Namibian youth jury shared their experiences and introduced their three favourite productions of the last Prix Jeunesse. After watching the films, the public was asked to vote for their favourite film. “Nowhere Boys” from Australia proved to be the most popular with both the young audience and the youth jury.
On Friday 17 June, a conference on Media and Information Literacy (MIL) took place at the Katutura Community Arts Centre. The event was also organised by the DW Akademie, this time in partnership with the Department of Media Arts Technology Studies of the College of the Arts.
Participants at the conference discussed the options for promoting awareness and further development of Media and Information Literacy in Namibia. Representatives from the Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service, the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, UNESCO, the NBC and other institutions exchanged ideas on the knowledge and skills young Namibians would need to be media literate, what networks MIL strategy could be built on and what could obstruct MIL implementation. The conference was the pilot event for a three-year Media and Information Literacy project pursued by the DW Akademie and the College of the Arts.