Sunday, September 19, 2021

Content creators or platforms, who drives the world of social media? Exciting debate coming to IGCF 2021

The International Government Communication Forum (IGCF) 2021 has announced a thought-provoking panel discussion on the concluding day of the two-day forum, to debate the emerging nature of the creator economy, and rules for winning.

The International Government Communication Forum (IGCF) 2021 has announced a thought-provoking panel discussion on the concluding day of the two-day forum, to debate the emerging nature of the creator economy, and rules for winning.

Taking place on September 27, the session titled, ‘Who defines the rules of the game? Content platforms or creators?’, is being held against the backdrop of statistical data which reveals that some 3.2 billion photos and 720,000 hours of online video were shared worldwide in 2020, of which three million were posted on Facebook, and 95 million photos and videos were uploaded to Instagram daily.

Eminent experts at the panel session include Elizabeth Linder, founder and CEO, and Chief Diplomatic Officer of Brooch Associates, a global advisory firm. Linder had previously founded and created Facebook's London-based Politics & Government division for the Europe, Middle East & Africa region.

Also on the panel are Raed Barqawi, the long serving Editor-in-Chief of Al Khaleej, the first daily Arabic broadsheet published in the UAE; and Caroline Faraj, Vice President for Arabic Services at CNN, who has overseen the content and management of the CNN Arabic site since 2001 and led the site’s comprehensive re-launch in 2014.

The fourth panelist, Rashid Al Awadhi, is the CEO of the New Media Academy and the first Emirati Government Employee to win the prestigious "Communicator of the Year" Award from the Middle East PR Association. In 2020, Awadhi was featured on the Forbes Middle East list of ‘50 Impactful Marketing and Communications Professionals in The Middle East’.

The discussion’s topic is extremely pertinent given the UAE’s data, which shows that audiences spent an average of two hours and 55 minutes per day on social media platforms in 2020.

The statistics raise several interesting questions for government communication departments worldwide. First, do social media platforms completely rely on content created by news and media organisations, or individual users? Who depends on the other? Could the volume of content have been produced so quickly without social platforms and applications and, would these platforms have survived and continued to develop without content creators? And finally, who is the ultimate winner?

The panel will address these questions, in addition to exploring the power dynamics of modern communication players and offer insights into the future of mass communication.

The session will be moderated by Sherif Amer, who has been the lead anchor at MBC Masr since 2013.

IGCF is organised by the International Government Communication Centre (IGCC), a subsidiary of the Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB), under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohamed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah. The upcoming edition is taking place on September 26 – 27, 2021, at Expo Centre Sharjah and will run under the theme 'Historic lessons, Future ambitions'. 

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