Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA)

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31 Princess of Wales Terrace, 4th Floor, Parktown
South Africa
+ 27 11 643 1100
+ 27 11 643 1129
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Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA)

( MDDA ) was set up by an Act of Parliament (Act 14 of 2002) to enable "historically disadvantaged communities and persons not adequately served by the media" to gain access to the media. It's beneficiaries will be community media and small commercial media.

The MDDA Act, 2002 was developed after discussions with major media players who agreed to jointly fund such an agency with government to facilitate media development and diversity. The MDDA is tasked with creating an enabling environment for media diversity and development by providing support to media projects, and facilitating research into media development and diversity issues. The agency functions independently from its funders, political-party and commercial interests. This arrangement enables government, the media industry and donors to work together in addressing the legacy of imbalances in access to the media.

The Constitution Act No 108 of 1996, in sections 16 and 32 (under Chapter 2, Bill of Rights), provides for freedom of expression and access to information. To deepen media diversity, government partnered with commercial media entities to establish the MDDA, which is tasked with providing financial and other support to community and small commercial media projects.

The MDDA is therefore a development agency that will assist in building an environment where a diverse, vibrant and creative media flourishes and reflects the needs and aspirations of all South Africans. The MDDA works primarily with historically disadvantaged persons and communities, historically diminished language and cultural groups, and inadequately served communities with a priority focus in rural and poor areas and to increase work done in areas outside of Gauteng and the Western Cape. The MDDA does this by the provision of grants and subsidies to media projects and the promotion of media development and diversity, leveraging resources and support through technical assistance, conducting and funding research, facilitating capacity building and advocating for media diversity.

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