Digitisation and convergence have created significant hurdles to what was once unique industries of broadcasting and telecommunications. Convergence has meant that these two industry offerings merged into one solution product, affecting the regulation of the sectors. According to Besa, this has been one of the most challenging transitions as regulators had not anticipated this type of evolution.
The narrative given by Elvis Besa, the Manager of Technical Broadcasting Services at the Independent Broadcasting Authority of Zambia (IBA), was in response to Broadcast Media Africa’s (BMA) question “What Challenges Are Faced By Regulators Concerning Implementation Of Policies And Frameworks For Fragmented Media?”.
Besa further expanded to say the internet has made it even more challenging to manage media regulation, the overriding reason being how end-users have no geographical limits. One of the solutions raised by Besa is for regulators to adapt by collaborating regionally and internationally to harmonise regulatory frameworks.
Elvis also noted that IBA realised the abovementioned impediments that came with fragmented media and devised a strategy that would analyse the media offering environment. The outcomes were that policies and frameworks should be based on the functionality of their regulatory objective. In addition, broadcasting is moving at a fast pace, and regulation needs to be dynamic in order to adjust to current digitisation flaccidity.
The Summit on “Broadcast Media Convention of Southern Africa – 2021” was an initiative by Broadcast Media Africa (BMA) and Southern African Broadcasting Association (SABA) to assist practitioners in “Strengthening The Capacity Of Regulators In The Age Of Ubiquitous Media Platforms” amongst other objectives.