SIBU MPANZA, 22

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE -

WHAT does a so­cial me­di­a­trend­ing YouTu­ber do?

He cre­ates con­tent and videos about cur­rent af­fairs and so­cial is­sues, pick­ing some of the most con­tro­ver­sial top­ics around.

From rape cul­ture to racism and cul­tural iden­tity, to dat­ing across races, Sibu Mpanza has talked about it and cre­ated not only a buzz, but also a plat­form for oth­ers to en­gage.

“I have been cre­at­ing YouTube con­tent and videos since Au­gust 2014,” he said.

Mpanza, who was born in Mpumalanga and stud­ied in Cape Town, now lives in Jo­han­nes­burg and is con­sid­ered one of the coun­try’s lead­ing on­line con­tent creators.

His work has won him sev­eral awards, in­clud­ing the Sam­sung So­cial Star com­pe­ti­tion in 2015, run­nerup for the African Blog­ger Award for Top Youtube chan­nel in Africa, and he’s made the #Kell­man20 list of in­flu­en­tial mil­len­ni­als to look out for in 2017.

Mpanza says he is inspired by changes in rep­re­sen­ta­tion of peo­ple of colour in var­i­ous fields.

“I hope South Africa can heal by recog­nis­ing the dif­fer­ences among its peo­ple. So many peo­ple are try­ing change and to sweep these dif­fer­ences and in­jus­tices un­der the rug of ig­no­rance and ap­a­thy,” Mpanza said.

“Peo­ple are try­ing to for­get our past, but only when we can ac­tively recog­nise that we are dif­fer­ent and why we are dif­fer­ent can we start the heal­ing process.”

Youth Day for the vlog­ger is “a day to cel­e­brate the fu­ture of our coun­try while com­mem­o­rat­ing the sig­nif­i­cance of the events in 1976”.

“The big­gest is­sue we are hav­ing right now as YouTu­bers is that peo­ple are un­able to watch be­cause of how high data prices are. Given the power, I would make it eas­ier for peo­ple to have ac­cess to on­line video con­tent,” he said.

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