Wednesday, 9 December 2009

The ACM Story

It is now eight years since a group of journalists from all over the English-speaking Caribbean got together under a PAHO banner in Barbados and decided to launch the Association of Caribbean MediaWorkers (ACM). The name was actually the idea of Terry Ally who thought we should simply play with the name of our predecessor organisation - the Caribbean Association of Media Workers (Camwork) so as to maintain some kind of connection with the group that had gone defunct.

We have ended up with a rather clumsy construction that has many new-comers use the acronym ACMW. We have in fact started using 'MediaWorkers' as one word and maintained the capital 'W'. A bit inconvenient and irregular, but we survive.

Some of our international friends have even asked about the term 'media workers' and why we don't simply say Association of Caribbean Journalists (ACJ) and done wid dat ...

I however think we need to maintain our description as an organisation of 'media workers' to keep the notion of a wider, more flexible arrangement for membership. This, in my view, makes perfect sense as we look at how the media are being re-arranged and reconfigured in the new digital age.

But, more about all of that another time. In a few days, we meet for the fifth time as an organisation and I am very proud of that fact. We have done this without the kind of significant resources Camwork once benefited from. We do not have a single significant financial benefactor and have been able to meet on a fairly regular basis through creative engagements with friends and institutional partners.

I look forward to Grenada over the next few days and our Fifth Biennial General Assembly. Will keep you informed.

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