There are many notable Kenyan bloggers out there addressing serious issues and churning out useful information that is shaping the face and future of Kenya.However little attention is being paid towards rewarding and recognizing their efforts!
That is the subject of this thread and i hope the corporate industry especially the media fraternity will take the cue from the suggestions herein. The first and only time Kenyan bloggers were recognized and awarded for their efforts was in 2006 under the initiative of kenyaunlimited .The awards featured such categories as most innovative,creative and inspirational blog,best political, most humorous,best new blog,best blog not written in English,most interactive blogger,achievement award(for blogs started before 2005)outstanding membership to the kenyaunlimited blog aggregator website etc.The 2006 kaybee awards seem to have been the first and last thereafter little activity has been undertaken to recognize Kenyan bloggers.
The Kenyan blogosphere is rapidly developing and the bloggers are becoming more ingenious as is the case of blogs such as Mama Mikes,mentalacrobatics, jikomboe ,kumekucha...etc.
Many of us are indebted to the marsgroupkenya especially in its fight against corruption and whistle blowing yet it is sad to see that such efforts are hardly being recognized perhaps because there is no unity or unifying forum for Kenyan bloggers.The best efforts seems to be the Barcamps Kenya which are not limited to the blogosphere as an alternative medium for information and communication.I indeed invite Kenyan bloggers to a venture to recognize Kenyan blogs and i hope the media fraternity will support this initiative!I believe strongly the failure of what would be an annual event the kaybee awards was due to lack of support, a committed and resourceful secretariat,exposure and sponsorship.But that should not necessarily be the end of blog recognition in Kenya while the rest of the world prospers!
I am pleasantly informed to note that the journalistic group Reporters sans frontie`rs have an annual blog awards link here and recognize blogs defending freedom of expression which for the most part have been blogs in the Arab ,Asian and some few African (Egypt and Morocco)countries.Kenyan bloggers you need to arise don't read this blog and shelve the idea kindly contact me we begin something for posterity!
The South African 2008 blog awards are around the corner from 11 to 14 March 2008 .There is much we can borrow a leaf from them !Among the new categories include recognizing the best music blog,best sports blog,best website promoting blog,most controversial blog,best undiscovered blog,best podcast, best travel blog,best photographic blog(we produced Mohamed Amin of Camerapix we can do more!)best cookery blog .Participants and corporate well wishers are invited to contribute in kind towards the awards.The robust South African IT industry supports the events in a wholesome way donating laptops, computers,software ,money etc towards this event.The net effect is that blogging standards, innovation and blog quality in South Africa is rapidly developing and attracting a lot of investment from foreign markets.Same goes for the Nigerian blogosphere which is robust but slowly rising !
I am yet to see a Kenyan fashion blog yet blogging may just be the easiest way for our local fashion designers such as Anne Mc Reath of kikoromeo(fortunate enough to have a website),African Heritage,House of Brides(of Susan Omino),Betty Vanneti of The Wild Ones Creations,Sue Muraya,Rosemary Manyalla of Roma Designs, etc and those who are little known to showcase their works of art to the international fashion industry.A blog is basically a website that allows a user to post information whenever and wherever with little knowledge of web design,programming and development.
Kenyan bloggers should therefore take the cue.This should not be a mere part time activity or a forum for venting but should offer other significant opportunities.The nomination process should be fair and just since corruption seems to be a perennial problem in Kenya! The Kenyan corporate industry especially Google Kenya,Dell Computers,Microsoft East Africa, Wanainchi online,Safaricom,Celtel(K)Limited,Lowe Scanad.. etc should come out and support the Kenyan blog industry.