THE FAIR Play Awards will next year add a special award for a CARIMAC student who exemplifies the professional values and attributes of journalism, which will be named in honour of the late journalist Christine Bell who died earlier this year.
This was announced by Christopher Levy, president of the Fair Play Awards and president and chief executive officer of Jamaica Broilers, during the 12th staging of the awards at the Terra Nova Hotel in St Andrew on Tuesday.
In commending the "strong" submissions this year that mainly focused on human interest and investigative pieces, Chief Judge Professor Hopeton Dunn said he was hoping that in the future he would see entries from other categories.
"We have had a great majority of entries coming in from human interest features, which is a welcome category in a media landscape that often prioritises hard news. However, we would like to see more feature treatment on economic and financial matters, business issues, music, entertainment, technology and also historical treatment, which is something that we are not paying enough attention to," noted Dunn.
He took the opportunity to remind radio journalists that there was now a separate category and encouraged them to submit entries, as there was none this year. He also urged media houses outside of Kingston and St Andrew to participate in the awards.
Time for new media categories
Acknowledging the phenomenal impact social media and the Internet were having on media on a whole, Dunn added, "In a year when we are highlighting social media, it may be a good time to say to our sponsors and organisers that we ought to now consider a new category of entries reflecting online, web use, digital media productions as part of the full spectrum of media."
During an interactive rap session with journalist Dionne Jackson-Miller, Saadiq Rodgers-King, chief operating officer of software licences company Nodeijitsu and co-founder of the social media Hot Potato, extensively discussed how social media was changing the media landscape.
Of the 17 entries from television and six from print, first place in the television category went to TVJ for 'Working in Danger? Asbestos Alert', who was also awarded third place for 'Illegal Abortion Drug - Cytotec' and a certificate of commendation for 'In Search of Peace'. H.G. Helps from The Jamaica Observer took the prize for first place in print for 'Death Postponed'.
Tyrone Reid of The Gleaner got second place for his series 'Unhealthy State of Affairs' and a Certificate of Commendation for 'This is Madness: the Bellevue Story'.