Information is readily available on numerous information sharing platforms of how countries are increasingly investing in growing their Entertainment Industries as they have portrayed over the years a propensity of enormously growing their economies.

UNITED STATES

The entertainment industry in New York City alone, contributes over $8.7 billion to the local economy there and has been providing jobs to more than hundred thousand people as recorded in 2016. The U.S. media and entertainment industry on the other hand is recorded to contribute more than $632 billion to the country’s economy and represents a third of the global industry.

SOUTH AFRICA

A country environing the Kingdom of Lesotho in totality, Lesotho’s number one source of imports across all industries; the Entertainment industry there has been predicted to bring a revenue of R177.9 billion in the year 2020 from 132 billion in 2016. (Film alone recorded in 2017 to provide R5.6 billion to the SA’s GDP).

AUSTRALIA

Entertainment and media market in Australia is worth 30.91 billion Australian dollars and the compound annual growth rate for the period 2013 to 2017 is said to have grown by over 2.9 percent. It is projected that from 2017-2021 the total market reach will be $43.7 billion, consumer spending reach $26.4 billion and advertising reach $17.3 billion by 2021.

CHINA

China’s entertainment and media market is worth $228 billion and is predicted to grow to $264 billion by 2020.

There are many other published economic statistics showing how valuable the Entertainment and media industry is enormously contributing to the general growth of economies therefore immensely alleviating poverty and unemployment.

However, making a million maloti from music sales, performances, distribution, or from a film production or from any component of entertainment in Lesotho alone is still regarded as a ridiculous ambition to an ordinary creative in Lesotho and this is because the environment simply does not allow for that kind of growth.

SHORTCOMING 

Why is it that in Lesotho there are no statistics ranging close to or even around the figures mentioned above? Why is it that Lesotho is slacking behind in terms of all these developments you see in other countries with regard to this industry? Why is there little or no livelihood in the entertainment business of Lesotho when thousands of people across the world have derived a sustainable living out of it?

The absence of standardization is in my informed opinion the main crippling factor of growth or even the subsistence of a fully fleshed entertainment industry in Lesotho. It is the reason why Basotho cannot place entertainment and sustainability in the same bracket without having to view them as conflicting.

Standardization is the greatest need for the entertainment business in this country and the only time we will start talking numbers in millions is when it has been duly considered and extraordinary measures are taken to fulfil it.

WHAT IS STANDARDIZATION?

Standardization is a framework of agreements to which all relevant parties in an industry or organization must adhere to ensure that all processes associated with the creation of a good or performance of a service are performed within set guidelines. This ensures that the end product has consistent quality and that any conclusions made are comparable with all other equivalent items in the same class.

WHY STANDARDIZATION?

Having a formal set up helps in giving direction, ensuring sustainability and keeping record of the industry growth while it provides jobs to hundreds and thousands of young and old people in the country. Despite its shortcomings, creating a standard of operation brings about formality and consistency. The music business should be formalized in order to grow it, prune it and make it sustainable. The same thing applies to Film and every area of entertainment, that element of conformity to a particular standard would be as beneficial to Lesotho as it is in other countries.

REQUIREMENTS

  • LEGAL FRAMEWORK

First and foremost, a fundamental requirement is the setting up of legal framework that is relevant to the Basotho and the general infrastructure of where this work this business is carried out.  There is a need for policies relevant to entertainment,  advertising laws, competition laws, regulations for cinematographic works (film), regulations for utilization of musical works by way of performances, distributions, broadcasting and standard for payment of musicians.

There is a need for a comprehensive and up to date copyright law, that will assist in promoting and protecting works produced in the industry. The proper legal framework and active enforcement is good ground for the building of this structure (industry) and everything else will come as pillars to reinforce the body.

  • ASSOCIATIONS, SOCIETIES, ORGANIZATIONS

Individuality has become the enemy of a meaningful progress in Lesotho’s entertainment business.  The silo mentality is the reason why it is difficult to have the unison in voices of all the stakeholders in this business. Lack of unison thereof has resulted in the unfruitfulness of advocacy attempts and promotion of an organised industry by the stakeholders.

Stakeholders in the entertainment business need to swallow their prides and organize  themselves into  bodies that will help ensure compliance with regulations, uniformity, organization in the dealing within the industry. This will also help professionalize the business thus attracting more investment, sponsorships and even general attention from the consumers of their work.

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