One-on-one with Betty Kithinji

Betty Kithinji [Instagram]

Betty Kithinji is an award-winning talent manager, broadcaster and visual producer.

How did you become a broadcaster?

I have had a passion for broadcasting since I was very young. I took a journalism course at the Kenya Institute of Mass Communication (KIMC) after college and gave up on it after college. Ten years later, SPM Buzz happened and here I am today. 

Your documentary on Gengetone is about to launch...

One year ago I embarked on a journey to find out how Gengetone started and became such a wave in the country and beyond. The documentary also seeks to address what happened to Gengetone. I have featured the industry gatekeepers and the artistes themselves. It will be insightful. 

You were instrumental in the documentary from a directorial point. Are you transitioning from being in front of the camera to behind the scenes? 

Not really, the camera is my ‘second name’. However, I had to produce the documentary as well as voice it to make sure I achieved the vision as intended. 

Why is it that most media personalities in entertainment have not studied journalism? 

Truth be told, the media is more of talent and experience than theory. People who did not study journalism may get the spot because of that, but Media Law and Ethics as taught in school is what they miss out on. Education is important. 

You went viral for the coverage of the president’s inauguration. Do you pre-meditate on what you’re going to do when going to the field? 

We research and pre-plan with the team on the key areas we should cover in each event. The president-waving moment was just a coincidence and it happened to be on camera. 

What makes a good interview for you and why? 

An insightful conversation that besides being entertaining, can inform and educate the audience about a thing or two. 

Women’s awareness, equity and equality are vital. What are the challenges of being female in the media industry? 

Starting might be challenging but once you master your craft, what’s meant to be handled by you will be yours. Also, I think the media somehow favours the women on camera. 

There has been speculation that you and Liz Jackson cannot co-exist. What do you say to your observers?

Well, people should stop speculating, because besides Liz being my colleague, she is also my small sister.  For the observers, I’ll take that as a compliment. I’m sure the God who placed me here has even greater plans for me. 

What are your thoughts on the current music landscape, media and clout chasing? 

The music industry is competitive and is characterised by the desire for quick recognition in a crowded field. Unfortunately, this can overshadow genuinely talented artistes who may not prioritise publicity stunts. Media often covers popular artistes over talented ones because it’s driven by consumer demand. The public tends to be more interested in sensationalism and celebrity culture. 

What are your thoughts on the current layoffs in traditional media?

The layoffs in traditional media are undoubtedly concerning, as they represent a shift in the industry landscape. It’s essential to adapt to the changing media landscape. I love the flexibility online media comes with. Digital is the future. I love it here.

How do you relate to Eddie Butita as a person and as a boss? 

It’s an honour to work under someone who is known for his creativity. People pay to consult with him. As a creative director and comedian, he brings his knowledge and humour to his leadership style. That’s inspiring and enjoyable!

What are your aspirations for the remainder of the year?

I aim to create positive change in the world by having meaningful conversations and building important connections through my interviews. This is a key part of how I’m striving to become a global icon.


Related Articles