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In the video below David Larsen explains the Digital Trade Route that describes what Africa Media Online is able to do for you:

AMO What We Do from Africa Media Online on Vimeo.

At Africa Media Online we speak about ourselves as operating a “digital trade route,” to enable you to get your analogue or digital collections from where it is currently stored to the audience you want to reach, whether local or global. Along that trade route we provide: Training, Consulting, Digitisation, Media Management Systems and Media Sales.

Just as in the old days where the industrial economy needed raw materials from around the world and so set up trade routes to access those raw materials, in the information economy the raw materials are digital or digitised media collections. So we have spent the last decade setting up a digital trade route from Africa to relevant audiences in Africa and around the world. And we have done so in such a way that the ownership and control over the digital collections and their use, stays in the hands of African media creators and the custodians of African collections.

Above: Cape Town’s Duncan Dock receives ships from all over the world, nestled as it is in the corner of Table Bay. PHOTO: David Larsen / Africa Media Online

Our passion as Africa Media Online is “Africans telling Africa’s story.” The problem in society that we want to be a part of the solution to, is the lack of an African perspective in the telling of the African story. More often than not, in the global media or heritage sphere, Africa’s story is told, both to a global and an African audience, by those who do not have Africa as their home. While we have no problem with this (and even encourage when appropriate), we also believe that for information democracy to flourish, African voices should also be heard on their own terms both in Africa and on the global stage. Hence the digital trade route, where we hope to enable Africans to tell Africa’s story.

Okay, so what is this digital trade route? Well, it is really everything we do in service of enabling African media creators, or the custodians of African collections, to get the collections into digital form and to the audience they want to reach. That audience may simply be your own staff or family, it may be the public you serve as an organisation, or it may be global publishing and broadcast markets. The digital trade route is made up of systems, products, services and relationships that we have been working on for over a decade. These include: Training, Consulting Services, Digitisation Services, Media Management Software (MEMAT) and systems and Picture Sales.

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