The City of Tshwane’s TshWi-Fi Takes Gold and Silver in the 2017 Bookmark Awards

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Winning some of the biggest international digital awards for bringing public WiFi to the people of Tshwane clearly wasn’t enough. The City of Tshwane, and it’s acclaimed TshWi-Fi deployment, continue an unbroken winning streak with two top achievements at the prestigious IAB Bookmark Awards in Sandton last Thursday.

When Project Isizwe joined forces with the City of Tshwane they knew that WiFi for WiFi’s sake was not enough. They needed to use the TshWi-Fi network as vehicle to reach the people of Tshwane with the kind of content that they needed most.

Unlimited Access Content Portal Takes Gold

TshWi-Fi.co.za, the unlimited access content portal, was awarded a Gold in the Public Service and NPO Platforms category. Hyper-local, educational and empowering content has been the backbone of Tshwi-fi.co.za from the start. Since 2013, 2.9 million users have connected to the internet via 1050 Free Internet Zones (FIZ) situated in public spaces – at schools, healthcare facilities and community centres – predominantly serving the low-income communities living and working in the City’s townships.

And these users have wanted digital content that is tailored to them in a way that no international site can provide. Education, entrepreneurship, active citizenship and hyper-local entertainment keep the 700 000+ monthly users engaged, informed and coming back for more.

TshWi-Fi.co.za fills a gap that traditional media outlets can’t fill, and it takes advantage of the ubiquity of mobile phones, and the growing need for connectivity, to create a unique distribution channel.

TshWi-Fi TV Moves Citizen Journalism Forward With Silver

TshWi-Fi TV is making a name for itself in the competitive world of digital video, proudly accepting the Silver award in the Online Video Channels Category at the Bookmark Awards last night.

Who would have thought that a free hyper-local, video-on-demand streaming service created by citizen journalists could take on the big names in digital and take silver at one of the most prestigious digital events in Africa?

Not the small, hard-working group of citizen journalists who are giving a voice to their communities in the digital world. But win they did, proving that digital channels are changing the way that South Africans find and consume content.

It’s a massive achievement for TshWi-Fi TV, one of the TshWi-Fi services created through Project Isizwe’s innovative partnership with the City of Tshwane.

Together the partnership has created a training model that formally facilitates the learning and skills development for the young media producers. Over 20 citizen journalists have been trained, with empowering and employment opportunities facilitated through TshWi-Fi TV. They have progressed through this empowering model, encouraged and guided to seek out stories that are important to them and their communities.

Their work has blazed a trail for mobile, video-on-demand content as a concept in South Africa, and the model they’ve created is fast developing into a new standalone company CO4ZA – a digital broadcaster which sources and produces relevant and local content, while empowering young South Africans to become increasingly able to participate in the country’s economy.

Another two for Tshwane and TshWi-Fi!

Resources:

Portal Ididthat showcase:

https://ididtht.com/projects#bookmark-awards-tshwi-ficoza-content-portal-empowering-free-wifi-users

Portal overview video: https://vimeo.com/208092134

TshWi-Fi TV Ididthat showcase:

https://ididtht.com/projects#bookmark-awards-lights-camera-citizenship-tshwi-fi-tv-engages-entertains-and-empowers-tshwane

TshWi-Fi TV overview videos: https://vimeo.com/208093026 and https://vimeo.com/208092253

For more information please contact:

Peter Adolphs

+27 (0) 72 844 6375

[email protected]