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ARTICLE RETRACTION: Digital All Stars 2015: 13 South African tech entrepreneurs on the rise

Digital All Stars is a new series of articles on Ventureburn and Memeburn, which recognises and celebrates achievement in a variety of digital fields that includes entrepreneurship, media & marketing, technology innovation, general business and education. Our aim with the Digital All Stars Series on Ventureburn is to celebrate entrepreneurial achievement in South Africa, and the African countries in which Ventureburn is popular in, which includes Kenya and Nigeria.

Creating lists to recognise achievement is, in itself, a fraught exercise, so we aim to ensure accuracy by consulting with many experts in the wider industry to ensure that we acknowledge all who are achievers and leaders in their fields. In the article “13 South African tech entrepreneurs on the rise” it has come to our attention that we did not apply this process rigorously enough, and the article is not reflective or inclusive enough.

Quite simply, the article and the research that went into it is not in sync with the high standards we set ourselves in our mission to build the entrepreneurial landscape in South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria.

We apologise unreservedly for this error in judgement. We will try harder. We will fix this. And we will be back with an article that celebrates the digital and entrepreneurial stars on our continent.

  • Anne Pao

    all dudes. 10 out of 10. where is the diversity in the digital entrepreneurial space that no women are profiled here? there have to be female led startups (SweepSouth as an example) but not profiled here?

    • Why profile people just becasue they are women? i hate this equality crap when it being done just for the sake of equality. If they deserve to be here then cool. Otherwise, i don’t care what you have between your legs

      • Heidi Custers

        Wow. Angry, much? Yes, only 6% of SA Startups are founded by women, but I can think of 2 right off the bat that really deserve to be on this list. In fact, both have been profiled by Ventureburn and Forbes as powerful women tech founders; Barbara Mallinson and Annette Muller both deserve to be here, and not just because they are female. If you compare Obami or DotNxt to any of these businesses, they are as interesting and influential.

        • Of course im angry…South Africa is full of people getting acknowledged for the sake of their physical appearance (BEE and equality)

          If you deserve it then im not phased by what you look like…but dont promote people just because they are female…dont attack someone becasue “where is the diversity in the digital entrepreneurial space that no women are profiled here”

          If every person on the list was a woman then that’s would be fine…but dont attack someone becasue they havent included any women just becasue you are feminist. Which the person who made the first comment clearly is.

          This is not me being angry becasue people want women to be highlighted…This is me being angry becasue people want women to be highlight just becasue they are women.

      • Mary

        “If they deserve to be here”?? Really?! Yeah, sound like you really do hate equality ” just for the sake of equality ” Bruce. FYI we don’t care what you have betweenbetween your legs either…

        • Did I say that they dont deserve to be here? No…i didnt

          • Mary

            So then, back to Anne’s question… Why aren’t they being profiled here?

          • they clearly arnt on the same level as the people that were profiled 🙂 these are all pioneers in their field…if they were on the same level they would be in here 🙂 this is a 2015 list…these are the top 13 entrepreneurial tech pioneers in 2015, in South Africa…full stop (they just so happen to all be men)

            No ones fault…dont attack the writer…

          • CapeCol

            No one is saying that the list should be inclusive for the sake of it. Based on what criteria were the “top pioneers” identified? It would seem from the retraction that in fact the criteria was something not so rigorous, something more along the lines of “what tech people do I know?”/”who regularly speaks at events” and this came up with a biased list of over-confident white males who all know each other. There are without a doubt strong black and female pioneers in the tech space, and a thorough search (rather than an old/young boys club circle jerk) would have celebrated this.

  • Anne Pao

    okay Bruce, no need to get hectic. I am not saying to just include women because they are women. what i am saying is perhaps when writing this article should think broadly about whether this is a representation of entrepreneurship in the digital space in SA. Sweepsouth was the only SA startup to make it into esteemed 500 Startups incubator so it is not just because she is a female (and as you put what she has between her legs) but rather what the team of founders has created. isnt’this article supposed to be highlighting. Your comment is exactly the type of comment responsible for what is known and proven in research to be a gap in gender equality representation in entrepreneurship. maybe do some research is all i am suggesting.

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