Soaring costs threaten digital reporting | #speakup barometer | Ghana | DW | 27.11.2018
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Users on digital participation in Ghana

Soaring costs threaten digital reporting

The Internet has transformed Eric Kombat's reporting; from filing reports to instant feedback on social media. But the costs of staying connected are rising out of control.

Eric Kombat journalist in Tamale, Northern Ghana

Eric Kombat correspondent for the Daily Guide, Northern Ghana

Twenty-eight year old journalist Eric Kombat lives in Tamale, the capital of Northern Ghana. He is a correspondent for the country’s most-read independent newspaper, the Daily Guide . For Eric, digital participation has opened doors to meaningful work – but those opportunities come at a cost.

Before the Internet it would have been difficult for me to make a living. Now, I file my reports easily and on time. I can research information online. I can receive fast answers from my contacts, especially when addressing questions to officials. Also, if there is an issue that is bothering me, I can just go onto a social media platform with it and get quick responses. It makes my work so much fun.

My work focuses on politics and anti-poverty initiatives. For me, digital participation means discussing lots of issues on my social media platforms. I am fortunate to have been educated so I can use the Internet, as well as digital tools such as computers, cameras, tablets, and smartphones. The only challenge is the cost of data. Sometimes, if I want to stay connected with all my devices, it can be a lot of money in a month. 1000 MB is between GHS10.00 and GHS12.00 (EURO 2.00), depending on the network. So you can do the calculations yourself.

Maxwell Suuk / Matthew Moore


The #speakup barometer is a DW Akademie project that examines the connection between digital participation, freedom of expression and access to information. Learn more at