MultiChoice warns against opportunists trying to cash in on people's gullibility around job offers and the new local 24-hour TV news channel that will be replacing ANN7 (DStv 405).
MultiChoice is still waiting for applications from interested parties who want to start a majority black-owned local TV news channel, with the process to accept tenders still open.
No tenders have been assessed yet, and no tender has even been awarded to anyone yet.
However, that has not stopped fake news reports claiming that MultiChoice is this week meeting with 16 shortlisted TV news channel operators, nor opportunists trying to lure people with fake claims of having gotten the contract and job offers, or people from spreading fake messages on social media about job opportunities at a supposed TV news channel.
MultiChoice told Channel24 that erroneous news reports doing the rounds about "shortlisted prospective channel operators" are not true.
"We have invited bidders who registered and completed the relevant documents to an information session on 16 March. The aim of the session is to provide information regarding the procurement process and clarify questions bidders might have".
"We have not shortlisted any bidders as the evaluation process has not started.The request for proposals (RFP) closes on 30 April 2018 as communicated in our press release of 26 February 2018. We also communicated that parties who are still interested to register their intention to bid, have until 20 April 2018 to do so," said MultiChoice.
The new 24-hour, local TV news channel replacing ANN7 - that will no longer be in the DStv bouquet in August - will have to "provide anchor-based, live broadcasts in the style of Al Jazeera, CNN, Sky News, eNCA, SABC News and others with a focus on national, regional, local and African news, actuality, current affairs and sport with less focus on international affairs".
There is no specific starting date for the new TV news channel, with the set-up and establishment of a newsroom, an electronic news gathering and workflow, editing and playout system, and hiring of staffers that will take several months and that only start after a successful bid has been awarded.
Meanwhile, people on social media started to spread messages like one purportedly from ABT Africa saying "the new MultiChoice news channel is launching in September" and that people should email CVs to someone there because the channel is "looking for newsroom staff, producers, technical, presenters" and even "events organisers".
MultiChoice is warning people to be careful of such messages, saying "we distance ourselves from any adverts recruiting for the proposed news channel on DStv. The tender process for this channel is still open and no-one has been awarded the contract".