By Waziri Muhammad Muntazar

A renowned Academic in the Mass Communication Department of Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Professor Ladi Sandra Adamu, recently made history as the first female Professor in the department to deliver Inaugural Lecture in the Institution.

Professor Ladi Analysed a concept called ‘The Spider in the Web’.

The inaugural Lecture which was chaired by the Vice chancellor, Professor Kabiru Bala, was also witnessed by the Executive Governor of Plateau State, who was duly represented by his deputy, Professor Sonni Tyoden and many other Academics and high Personalities.

The inaugural lecture themed: ‘The Spider in the Web: Digitalization of Conflict Reporting in a Pluralistic Nigerian Society’, explained how Digitalization can be maximised to facilitate more effective reportage of conflict in the Nigerian pluralistic society.

Speaking on what the concept of ‘The Spider in the Web’ means, Professor Adamu said: “I metaphorically advanced the spider’s web in this lecture for our critical understanding of conflict, journalism, media functions, digital communication, and capacity building from a constructive perspective… Information and conflict from different radius threads, framed by previous experiences, come together and intersect as the spider spins the spiral threads for a purpose.”

She further stressed that: “We are all ‘spiders’, weaving different threads along the complex system of the Nigerian society, even as we communicate such complexities… Sometimes, it seems insignificant, but like the intricacies in the web of a spider, our experiences are forever part of our system.”

According to the Professor, the journalists, readers, the conflicting interests are regular spiders in the web of communication and news production.

In her lecture, Professor Adamu dichotomizes the terms digitization and digitalization, where she buttressed that digitization is a technical process of data conversion from analog to digital bits, while digitalization refers to the increased use of digital and computer technologies in organizations, countries, and workplaces.

She opined that: “in building a competitive society that can withstand both internal and external vices, the idea of digitalization must play a key role and accuracy in communication which is one of the most critical communication skills that can speed up this process of digitalization.”

Prof. Adamu outlined the necessity of ‘Drone Journalism’ in enhancing the reportage of news in conflict zones, seeing that as a way to prevent the journalists on conflict beats from being prone to danger.

She states that the drone-journalism is the newest technique of reporting news on conflict zones worldwide, recommending media organizations to adopt the style and train their journalists on how to operate the drones. She also deem it as a technique that would help in national security and intelligence gathering in Nigeria.

Lastly, she recommends that ‘Drone Journalism’ should be introduced in Nigerian universities’ curriculum, so as to prepare ground and train well the aspiring journalist in universities.

In his remarks, the deputy governor of Plateau State, Prof. Tyoden opines that the work of the lecturer is very commendable, as it is something of great societal benefit.
He calls on Academicians to not just be presenting new things, for the sake of being new, but rather they should be presenting things that will benefit the society.

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