“The MMX conference is the most credible event of its kind in this country. It pulls the highest-level players in the journalism sphere together over two days.”             

 – Jeremy Maggs, Maggs on Media, eNCA

About the Duke Menell Media Exchange (MMX)

MMX is into an annual conference and ongoing programs, fellowships and events, in South Africa and at Duke, committed to developing and supporting an inclusive, collaborative, robust and sustainable media community in South Africa and beyond.

MMX is easily South Africa’s most significant networking platform for journalists, offering programming designed to support the media community and encourage collaboration and innovation. MMX’s organizers appear to be passionate advocates for press freedom and fierce proponents of independence and other democratic mores within the practice of journalism.”


MMX aims to present tools and resources that offer practical ways for journalists to improve their work, to foster networking, collaboration and mentor relationships, and to enrich and empower journalists and the practice of journalism in South Africa, an environment where media’s important impact on democracy is made plain every day. In every event, we work to provide substantive, relevant but also inspiring and fun programming, focusing on imaginative responses to challenges, and always working our way toward literal, practical applications.

The annual MMX conference, held mid-year in Johannesburg, brings the entire media community together. Reporters, editors, media executives, non-profits, community and independent journalists, bloggers, tech developers, scholars and students come together to share ideas, explore developments, compare practices, and build skills and relationships. MMX’s signature annual event features three days of programming, with at least 55 presenters, 2 keynote addresses, 4 panel discussions, 8 short sharps, 12 workshops, 3 videos, a pop-up radio station, a skills boot camp, two networking receptions and a performance or two.

In addition to the annual conference, MMX programming includes special projects and pop-up events throughout the year, in many locations, and on a variety of topics that provide ongoing opportunities for meaningful exchange.

The media world in South Africa faces real and urgent challenges, from budgetary pressures and newsroom convergence, to laws and tactics that limit media freedom. The vision of this conference is to create an annual forum for the exchange of ideas to explore these challenges and to examine useful tools and practices together. We hope that our project will inspire journalists to continue the work of protecting and building a strong and free media community which is at the very heart of South Africa realizing its potential as a leader in Africa and around the world.”

– Mary Menell Zients, Founder