Film and Publication Board CEO takes global role

Staff Writer
By Staff Writer, ITWeb
Johannesburg, 18 Sept 2023
Dr Mashilo Boloka, CEO of the Film and Publication Board.
Dr Mashilo Boloka, CEO of the Film and Publication Board.

Film and Publication Board (FPB) CEO Dr Mashilo Boloka has joined the Global Online Safety Regulators Network as vice-chairperson, for a one-year term until 2024.

In a statement, the FPB says Boloka will serve as deputy of Ofcom’s Gill Whitehead, who was appointed as the network’s chairperson for the same period.

Outgoing chairperson, the eSafety Commissioner’s Julie Inman-Grant, says: “We are pleased to hand over the reins to Ofcom under the capable stewardship of Gill Whitehead. The 2024 vice-chair will be the incredibly energetic Mashilo Boloka, CEO of the South African Film and Publication Board.

“We will continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder in working together to work towards creating a safer, more positive online world.”

Officially unveiled in November 2022, the network was founded as part of a collaboration between online safety regulators – Australia’s eSafety Commissioner, Fiji’s Online Safety Commission and Ofcom – with support from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.

It aims to promote online safety and share information and good practice around online regulation.

South Africa’s FPB announced its membership to the global network in June.

The FPB CEO’s appointment was made at the network’s London meeting hosted by the UK’s communications regulator Ofcom.

At the London meeting, the network discussed the need to promote regulatory coherence and underscored the importance of collaboration on shared issues, including industry engagement and new and emerging technology. As a start, it agreed on the creation of a technology and public education working group.

“The network represents a collaborative initiative to fight the borderless online harms, pursue harmonisation to avoid fragmentation of online safety legislation, ensure coordinated online safety measures, and promote online safety across the continents,” says Boloka.

“As the Film and Publication Board of South Africa, we are excited to be a member of this network. As the only representative on the African continent, we will ensure the voice of other regulators on the continent and the other developing worlds are heard.

“We will persuade other regulators on the continent to join the network so they can seize the opportunities it provides, with information sharing on experiences and best practices, so that we can together promote a safer online environment and fight online harm wherever it exists.”