Wanted: Senior Account Manager

Livity Africa is looking for a Senior Account Manager to work across our exciting young company, focusing on building the Live Magazine brand to become the leading youth media channel in SA.

Launched in 2011, Live Magazine SA is a youth lifestyle magazine that is 100% created by 16-25 year olds around South Africa. With a main production office in Cape Town, the magazine itself is distributed all over the country, and amplified by its online channels – via mobi, YouTube and social networks.
This role will be focused on business development, nurturing excellent relationships with existing and new commercial clients, and overseeing excellent delivery of campaigns and content within the youth team.

As well as being an excellent communicator and highly organised, you would need to be extremely proactive, willing to learn and able to multi-task under pressure. It’s also absolutely essential you can relate well to young people of a wide range of backgrounds, and understand youth culture.
You’ll work closely between our sales, management and media mentoring teams, as well as with our rolling team of around 20 full-time trainees, who join us for a 3-6 month cycle and create all the content.

You’ll be managing clients, developing and pitching campaigns for the magazine and wider business, and making sure those campaigns are delivered on time and to a high quality. Live has already worked with an impressive list of clients, including Google, Coca-Cola, eTV, eNca, Metropolitan, Ster Kinekor, Johnson&Johnson and Puma.

This is a rewarding and demanding full-time role based in Cape Town, with regular travel to Johannesburg. You’ll need a minimum of 4 years’ experience in the marketing or advertising industry, with two years at least at Account Manager level.

Please apply with a CV and covering note to [email protected] by January 25th 2013.

More about Live Magazine here:

Our mobi site: www.livemag.co.za
The story behind Live coming to SA: www.livityafrica.com
Read back issues online here: http://issuu.com/livemagazinesa

Things that make me proud…

Writing up a quarterly update for the Shuttleworth Foundation folks is a good opportunity to look back on the last 3 months. Everything moves so fast here that one thing we’re definitely *bad* at is taking a moment to think, “hmm, that was actually amazing…”

But for my favourite artefact from September to November, I have to list an award won - not by us directly, but by Manez Sobethwa, a member of our team who moved on from Live Magazine SA to advertising agency 140BBDO.

In the Loerie Awards for 2012 Manez, still only an intern, won a GOLD for his first ever radio commercial for Snickers. Check it out here, with Manez performing the main monologue:

Not only is it an amazing achievement for a rookie in the industry, I think this ad is genuinely brilliant and funny, and shows the benefit of bringing diverse young talent into the industry that you may not find from the usual top-end advertising schools…

Manez, a lugubrious and humble soul, shrugged off the award…


Wanted: Youth Development Producer for Live Mag (Cape Town)

Live Magazine SA is recruiting for a unique role that combines the challenge of helping to produce a national magazine and developing the young talent of the future.

Launched in 2011, Live Magazine SA is a youth lifestyle magazine that is 100% created by 16-25 year olds around South Africa. With a main production office in Cape Town, the magazine itself is distributed all over the country, and amplified by its online channels – via mobi, YouTube and social networks.

Due to our expansion into Johannesburg, we are now recruiting a new Youth Development Producer to oversee the recruitment, retention, progression and creative potential of our team of young media trainees in Cape Town.

For this we’re looking for a unique individual who is highly-organised, extremely proactive, willing to learn and able to multi-task under pressure: can relate on a level to young people of a wide range of backgrounds, and understands youth culture intimately.

You’ll work closely with our small team of media mentors, but even more closely with our rolling team of around 20 magazine and media interns, who join us for a 3-6 month cycle. This role is responsible for recruiting and managing the trainees, tracking their personal development and helping them towards their career and life goals.

You’ll also need to pitch in to help produce and organise shoots, career workshops, weekly talks and the co-ordination of other volunteer mentors, as well as continually forming partnerships with external partner organisations.

This is a rewarding and demanding full-time role based in Cape Town and would suit someone with a media/ advertising background with a strong passion (and, ideally, experience) in personal/ career development of young people or trainees.

Please apply with a CV and covering note to [email protected] by December 17th.

More about Live Magazine here:

Our mobi site: www.livemag.co.za

The story behind Live coming to SA: www.livityafrica.com

Read back issues online here: http://issuu.com/livemagazinesa

New on the site: Wall of Fame

One of the biggest challenges of any social enterprise is proving or showcasing your social impact. But over the years we’ve always felt that the clearest way of showing the difference this work makes is to showcase the stories of the people who’ve come through the doors and go on to do amazing things…

New on the site from today, we’re publishing our Wall of Fame: an ongoing record of the success stories of young South Africans who’ve made amazing steps forwards, with a shove from us – sometimes a big shove, sometimes just a little one. But from the stories we are hearing of Live Graduates, whatever their level of education or ability, the experience being at Live Magazine gives is proving a vital addition to their CVs.

And some of these inspiring young people are going into impressive job roles at magazines, newspapers and agencies…

You can keep track of our ongoing Wall of Fame here - and even as we publish this round, there’s already several more to add…

Wax on, wax off: lessons The Karate Kid can teach us about tackling youth unemployment

Miyagi: Now, ready?
Daniel: Yeah, I guess so.
Miyagi: [sighs] Daniel-san, must talk.
[they both kneel]
Miyagi: Walk on road, hm? Walk left side, safe. Walk right side, safe. Walk middle, sooner or later
[makes squish gesture]
Miyagi: get squish just like grape. Here, karate, same thing. Either you karate do “yes” or karate do “no.” You karate do “guess so,”
[makes squish gesture]
Miyagi: just like grape. Understand?
Daniel: Yeah, I understand.
Miyagi: Now, ready?
Daniel: Yeah, I’m ready.

I must have watched Karate Kid ten or twelve times before the age of 10. I was besotted by the boy-done-good, underdog-triumphs-over-high-school-bully-hegemony vibe in the 1984 classic starring Ralph Macchio and Noriyuki ‘Pat’ Morita. For those too young to appreciate the golden age of 80s teen films, it told the story of Daniel Larusso, a troubled latchkey kid from a single parent family who moves to a new neighbourhood. He is harangued by the cackling cool kids at his new high school who are all, it turns out, training in Karate at the same local dojo.

One evening, having battled to escape his pursuers (on BMXs, of course, it being the eighties) he runs into janitor Mr Miyagi, a lugubrious, diminutive, Yoda-like Japanese man who speaks in pidgin-English aphorisms and has a Bonsai tree fetish. To cut a long story short: Mr Miyagi turns out to be a karate badman and puts Daniel through a crash masterclass that sees him slogging his way to the finals of the local karate tournament, kicking his arch nemesis’s ass with an ostentatious swan-kick, and, of course, getting the girl in the process. The end.

I’m not sure the film would stand the test of time. Even as a mere slip of a boy I remember finding Macchio’s character annoying, but fawned at the crying-in-the-rain lost love eighties scenes when things go awry with his beloved (Elizabeth Shue - be still my beating eight-year-old heart!) to a crushing soundtrack of Bananarama’s Cruel Summer: although in summary I imagine it to be mawkish, outdated and over-acted.

But even to my jaded, overenlightened, thirtysomething cynic’s mind, there’s a lot of Zen wisdom in the film, particularly from Miyagi. As well as a sentiment to the film that makes it a stayer. And, in all serious seriousness, one particular scene has real resonance for me, especially in the context of Live Magazine…

Miyagi and the evil sensei

In the film, Miyagi puts Larusso into an informal Karate apprenticeship, having made an audacious pact with the pugnacious lantern-jawed dojomaster (who is training up all of Daniel’s nasty little tormentors as vicious facsimiles of his own troubled Vietnam-vet soul) that they will leave him alone if Daniel wins the forthcoming karate tournament. This apprenticeship involves Daniel volunteering his time to Mr Miyagi during his school holidays, and turning up every day at his Japanese-style paper house to perform a series of tasks. At the beginning of each day, Miyagi sets the task and then buggers off.

First day: paint the house with horizontal brushstrokes - LEFT!/ RIGHT!/ LEFT!/ RIGHT!

Second day: paint the fence - UP!/ DOWN!/ UP!/ DOWN!

Third day: Wax the car with circular motion - WAX ON!/ WAX OFF!

After a good few days of this Daniel loses his rag, thinking he is being taken for a ride by Miyagi: that he’s been been duped into acting as a temporary manservant for his little japanese guru.

Daniel-san looking a wee bit grumpy about the old Wax on/ wax off vibe

As a result, in the most memorable scene in the film, he confronts Miyagi with something of a quasi-testosterone-filled pubescent tantrum. Only to realise that the seemingly onorous tasks he has been labouring away at have in fact formed the basis of self-defense techniques for the esoteric Okinawa-style of karate that Miyagi is schooling him in. It’s then a mere short sprint, a few crane-kicks and windswept beach scenes later that Daniel is raising a monolithic trophy as the junior kung fu king of the universe and stealing off into the moonlight with Elisabeth Shue.

So how does this relate to a youth magazine in Cape Town?

This week we put issue 3 of Live Magazine to bed. Our young design team bear the brunt of this final stage: it ain’t pretty nor fun. It involves late nights, endless changes, losing of temper and much furrowing of brows. And it tests the resolve of a team who are, essentially, volunteers.

LIke Miyagi with Daniel Larusso, we’re trying to blood these young people in the working world so they will be not only strong enough to survive (against the odds) but flourish into the economic battleground that lies ahead of them. They might not realise what they’re learning.

And it’s not only in the final stages, when an issue gets stressful, that difficulties arise. A few months ago we realised there was a general sense of discontent among the team about what they were getting out of the ‘deal’. They were turning up every day, working, and we (the professional team) were getting paid but not them. We had decided not to provide lunch, but buy bread every day so that there are snacks for those who might not otherwise eat much – this became a complaint that our catering wasn’t good enough.

I then announced to them all that our project had been refunded for a second year by the Shuttleworth Foundation. Seen out of context, the view from some of the Live team was that, well, none of the money makes it way through to them. I know that some of the team thought: how is that fair? And when you know that there might not be much money coming into the household, or pressure from parents to put bread on the table, it’s hard not to consider their point.

Why am I here? they think. I’m not getting paid. I’ve worked hard. I’ve given my time. But what am I getting out of it? Like Daniel Larusso, it can lead to a bout of serious discontent.

Miyagi: Your friend, all karate student, eh?
Daniel: Friend? Oh, yeah, those guys.
Miyagi: Problem: attitude.
Daniel: No the problem is, I’m getting my ass kicked every other day, that’s the problem.
Miyagi: Hai, because boys have bad attitude. Karate for defense only.
Daniel: That’s not what these guys are taught.
Miyagi: Hai - can see. No such thing as bad student, only bad teacher. Teacher say, student do.
Daniel: Oh, great, that solves everything for me. I’ll just go down to the school and straighten it out with the teacher, no problem.
Miyagi: Now use head for something other than target.

Not that I’d ever go so far as to compare myself to Mr Miyagi, but I’ve had to have a few chats to discontented young people who are desperate to earn money and questioning their choice of taking up an unpaid internship. As well as trying to point out the benefits of why they’re here, I’ve also had to look a couple of our trainees in the eye and tell them I don’t think it’s my company’s responsibility to put bread on the table. It wasn’t easy and I didn’t love having to say it, but I believe it’s true.

At Live we’re not just dealing with one Daniel Larusso. We’ve got a rolling team of 25, and not all of them will succeed in the way we/they hope. That’s disappointing. And it honestly gives me sleepless nights to think we haven’t delivered for someone because of some fault in our delivery.

But the fact is, in 9 months we have seen (out of approximately 42) 12 of our core team move into full-time work, and a further 9 return or carry on into full-time tertiary education. That’s almost 50% into employment or education. So we know it works. But 50% of making it work needs to come from the individual.

Daniel Larusso about to unleash his victory-clinching crane-kick, and opening the door to finally losing his virginity

In actual fact, to stick my neck out, I believe it’s absolutely the right model: we provide the platform, the expertise, the mentoring, the contacts, the environment (and the travel expenses to get to the office). As a result, it’s not our responsibility, in my view, to be the provider of everything else. The ball is in their court there. We are not a charity, and we don’t want to be a soup kitchen. It’s unsustainable and I fear it ends up in a ‘dead aid’ situation: how can you keep the onus on progression if everything is provided. As long as we are constantly working and committed to make the offering as valuable as we possibly can: and never waver in that commitment by losing sight of our core social purpose, then I think we should all be permitted a decent night’s sleep.

We do still need to do more: more one-on-one employability mentoring, more job skills workshops, more/stronger links with employers and more PR around the fact that we exist and are have a pool of talented young people to employ.

We may not be as mystical and magical as Mr Miyagi – and I’m yet to catch a fly in a pair of chopsticks – but we are committed to making sure all the wax on/wax off makes our young team into future champions.

[Miyagi karate-chops the tops off three beer bottles]
Daniel: How did you do that? How did you do that?
Miyagi: Don’t know. First time.


Live Mag SA is recruiting!

Wanted: magazine journalism mentor to help change the world

Part-time role for someone who is passionate about magazines, able to relate to young people, and encourage, support and help nurture young talent.

Live Magazine is a new SA-wide youth magazine title launching mid-November – all created by young people themselves. We are now looking for a magazine journalist to become our part-time editorial mentor, overseeing the team of trainee journalists as a mentor and facilitator.

Live Magazine is a quarterly publication originally from London: a glossy youth magazine featuring an inspirational mix of gritty youth culture and information, advice, career guidance and things to do for a mainstream urban youth audience. The twist: everything in the magazine is produced by young people themselves, from the commissioning and editing, to the design, layout and distribution. Its mission: to give life-changing skills development and employability training for its participants, and to educate tens of thousands of young readers with an inspiring, engaging and entertaining mix of arts, culture, sports and fashion mixed with hard-hitting youth issues and crucial information and guidance for young people.

Live Magazine is now looking for someone with strong magazine/ editing experience to work as an editorial mentor for our team: to oversee a team of young people, guiding the editorial process, creative and production processes through to the launch of the second issue in early 2012. Funded by the Shuttleworth Foundation, Live Magazine’s first edition is out now – giving opportunities to a core team of dedicated young people from less privileged backgrounds to take ownership of their own publication, and provide relevant and credible youth content for tens of thousands of South African youth.

Ideal candidates will have their own credible freelance careers, or be looking for a challenge or a change: but a commitment to bringing out the best in young people from a variety of social and economic backgrounds is essential. We like people who are optimistic, open-minded, well-connected, flexible and able to keep their hands off the keyboard, stay cool amongst chaos and ensure young people take ownership.

You’ll be working in a small team led by Gavin Weale, Shuttleworth Foundation fellow and publisher of Live Magazine in the UK, now relocated to Cape Town to launch the magazine. Initial short contracts with opportunities to extend.

Salary based on experience and time commitment. To apply, or if you have any questions, please send a CV and covering letter to gavin (at) livityafrica (dot) com

Issue one: The Finish Line

I don’t know what to make of issue 1 yet. Seeing the spreads go up on the wall of our office over the last seven days has been exhilarating, painful, stressful, long. The finish doesn’t resolve itself quickly – seemingly endless processions of correction and amendments. Despite going through this process countless times before, it never seems to get any easier… and for our young team, it’s the first time.

But on Friday afternoon at around 5pm, we finally signed off the last page and there, in front of our eyes, had appeared a complete magazine. Too tired to celebrate properly, we made peace with the fact that there was nothing much more we could do apart from try and have a relaxing weekend then prepare the magazine for print on Monday morning.

Here’s a sneak peak of what’s inside…


Live SA: view from the inside

Nkuli Mlangeni: at the beating heart of the project

























So, my name is Nkuli and I’m the Project Coordinator here at Live Magazine South Africa. I’ve had a lot of interesting jobs in the past – and some not so cool ones – but this has by far been the most coolest.

It’s been a whole lot of fun hanging with the Live crew in the past two weeks.  The office went from being a plain ol’ boring office space to being a creative little joint with lots of funky images, flat plans and very busy walls.

I must say I was surprised to find out we’ve got another Grace Caddington fanatic in tha house: turns out little miss Ndu knows way more about fashion magazines than I thought. It also sounds like she got all the lowdown on who’s who in stiletto zoo.

And, I was freaked out a bit by Lauren and Roberto’s reaction when I showed them the Playstation games that they’re going to be playing for our reviews pages. They even came up with a genius idea to turn Gavin’s nothing office into a PS3 lounging area, with funky couches and a whole lot of other gaming gadgets that I’ve never heard of before.

Am really loving the energy and team spirit: thought it was so very sweet how our thoughtful editor Nicole went around collecting R5 from everyone to buy cake for  Fezeka’s birthday celebration.

And then there’s the cover story debate, So….who’s going to be the lucky star to bless the first cover of Live SA. I keep hearing Trevor Noah, Locnville, Dj Sbu, Bonang, Gareth Cliff, Julius Malema… the list goes on. And all I’m saying is Trevor Noah is my guy.

Can’t wait to checkout the new logo that the design crew’s been working on, Xolisa’s comic strip, Lauren’s sheep head experience and all the other goodies that this lot are cooking up.

Live Magazine SA: Day 3

Day three saw the group stepping up a gear when Cosmopolitan maagazine’s Deputy Editor led a superb masterclass on how to put together a magazine: from the tone of voice and front cover, to the Pillars of Content and deadlines…

Cathy Lund on what makes a cover

Furious note-taking

Live Magazine SA's 'pillars of content'

Live's tone of voice