WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Thu - 18.09.2014


Newsrooms and Journalism

An innovative new online platform combining games, news forums and long-form journalism launched on Wednesday in an industry comparable to Hollywood in terms of its social and economic impact. Vox Media’s long awaited new website, Polygon, finally went live this week, representing a significant advance in what is still an embryonic synthesis between video games and traditional journalistic methods. ‘Video games have always been defined by change,’ says editor in chief Christopher Grant, ‘and right now we’re living in the middle of the most rapid change in video game history with mobile gaming, social gaming and web gaming’.

The site is primarily a source for video game news and reviews, but will contain more unorthodox features focusing on the developers and players hitherto unaccustomed to the limelight. ‘A lot of what we have is brands,’ Managing Director Justin McElroy said. ‘What we’re hoping to do is by turning the camera a little more on the people, people can realize who is making these things and follow them.' 

Author

Frederick Alliott's picture

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-10-26 13:05

‘Privacy is for paedos’. ‘Circulation defines the public interest’. ‘In 21 years of invading people’s privacy I’ve never found anybody doing any good’. Fleet street veteran Paul McMullan’s take on modern journalism as related to the Leveson inquiry may not be pretty, but it sets in sharp relief the starkly amoral wasteland of sections of the tabloid press, the precise contours of which Lord Justice Leveson has been tasked to expose. In defending, amongst other things, hacking into the mobile telephone of a murdered schoolgirl, McMullan’s stance is abhorrent; yet it is also compelling, since it is the definitive articulation of what the Guardian called ‘the end point of the regulation-free, market-driven, anything-goes tabloid morality’.

Solutions to the present crisis are not noted for possessing a similar degree of uncompromising certainty, unless it is for that which is emphatically not desired. Large sections of the printed media face a paradoxical impasse, recognizing that the status quo of self-regulation has failed, but viewing any sort of official or statutory regulation as the death knell for freedom of speech. Before Leveson reports next month, therefore, the Carnegie Trust has taken the startlingly innovative step of bothering to ask the public exactly what they think should happen next, the results of which are rather revealing.

Author

Frederick Alliott's picture

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-10-25 17:51

With four days to go before the Ukrainian parliamentary elections on 28 October, the outlook for freedom of expression in the country’s media remains decidedly mixed. As the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva today starts the second cycle of its Universal Periodic Review, Reporters Without Borders (who, like WAN-IFRA, have this year compiled a report on the subject) have ‘sounded the alarm’ over conditions surrounding freedom of information which, it states, ‘have worsened to such a degree that the country is at a turning point’. Ukraine has long been a concern for free speech campaigners; background to the ongoing international dialogue can be found in recent posts on this blog here and here, along with the full report from the delegation sent there in July of this year.

Author

Frederick Alliott's picture

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-10-24 17:12

The escalating and disturbing threat to the safety of journalists drew together an extraordinary group of editors, frontline journalists, professionals and press freedom monitoring groups from the global media community at the BBC College of Journalism in London yesterday.

They signed an eight point declaration to express concern and demand action from governments to stop the killing and harassment and to end impunity.

The World Editors Forum and WAN-IFRA, representing editors, publishers and news organisations in 120 countries, signed the London Declaration ahead of the United Nations Vienna Inter-Agency meeting with media and journalist organisations on 22-23 November.

In a move of rare solidarity, representatives from major newspapers and broadcasters in some of the most dangerous countries for journalists, including Pakistan, Mexico, Russia, Sri Lanka and Somalia, agreed that threats, both physical and legal must end.

Author

Cherilyn Ireton's picture

Cherilyn Ireton

Date

2012-10-19 15:06

‘The buck stops with Candy’, screamed the US’s Fox News; ‘Candy Crowley sides with Obama’, fulminated the UK’s Daily Mail. Such a reaction from two well-known conservative media outlets in response to moderator Candy Crowley’s performance in last night’s second US presidential debate seems both unsurprising and unremarkable, given both the innately problematic nature of the job and her own prior indications of how she would complete it. The tussle between those who proclaim their journalistic impartiality and those who assert the presence of political bias is as old as the hills; given her unapologetically robust analysis of the role beforehand – ‘to give the conversation direction and get the questions answered’ – controversy was perhaps inevitable.

Author

Frederick Alliott's picture

Frederick Alliott

Date

2012-10-17 17:29

Guardian News & Media names Wolfgang Blau digital strategy director, The Guardian

Wolfgang Blau, currently editor of Die Zeit online, will be the Guardian’s new digital strategy director, starting in April 2013. He has been tasked with "creating and tailoring content for digital with a view to maximising revenue and audience," the paper said. One interesting point about the appointment is that in contrast to the Guardian’s highly integrated approach, at Die Zeit Blau has championed keeping the print and online versions of the paper as independent entities. There is only a six percent overlap between print and digital, he said in May. What elements of this experience will he bring to the Guardian?

Robert Steiner: In Toronto, we’re dumping the j-school model to produce a new kind of reporter, Nieman Lab

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-10-16 19:07

It was 1978, and as a 22-year-old research manager I was despatched to meet the formidable Editor of The Scotsman for the first time. Having squirmed in my seat as I explained what I vaguely understood about the latest readership figures, and detecting a friendly response, I asked the great man: “What is it like to run Scotland’s national newspaper?”

“Run a newspaper?” he boomed. “I run a COUNTRY!”

I’ve found myself recounting this story on various occasions recently, to an editor of a major national daily, and the owner of a group of local weeklies, among others. All of these conversations shared a common theme: namely the role of the editor in the modern world. And they all came to a different version of the same conclusion: that the role of the editor was diminishing.

When Eric MacKay was appointed, 155 years after The Scotsman’s launch he was its thirteenth editor, and held the job for 14 years. In the 27 years since he retired, there have been a further thirteen. Few of these later incumbents lasted more than two years in the job.

In the UK the spotlight has recently focussed on the role and regulation of the press, primarily the national tabloids, but despite government assurances to the contrary, a widespread fear is that the consequence of the various enquiries now reaching conclusion will be greater regulation, with further limitations on news-gathering and story telling.

Author

Guest

Date

2012-10-16 11:22

What have been the biggest changes in the media over the last ten years? Will the Internet be held responsible for killing the newspaper? Did a new fragmented audience determine the end of the mass audience?

These are just a few of the questions a new report published on October 11 by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at the University of Oxford tried to answer, analyzing  “Ten years that shook the media world”. It covers eight countries across the world from mature media markets - the United States, the United Kingdom, Finland, France, Italy and Germany - and emerging economies Brazil and India.

Clearly, the news industry has undergone a vast amount of change over the last decade. Some trends are long-lived, such as the ongoing fragmentation of most television audience, the decline of paid print newspaper circulation or the rise of Internet access and use. Others are more recent, such as the emergence of a few dominant search engines, the relentless expansion of social media sites and the spread of mobile web access. All these trends have been observed on a global scale; nevertheless they developed differently in different countries accordingly to the peculiarity of each media system. 

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2012-10-15 13:17

Internet freedom: Free to choose, The Economist

Facebook and Twitter could be asked to increase moderation of networks, The Guardian

The Economist addresses the issue of how much power technology giants like Google have over freedom of speech around the world in countries with different laws, both restrictive and relatively free. Meanwhile in the UK, the director of public prosecutions in exploring whether social media companies should take more responsibility for policing their networks for abuse and harassment in an attempt to reduce the number of cases coming to court, the Guardian reported.

Digital first isn’t an option for media – it’s the only way forward, GigaOm

The Orange County Register is hiring dozens of reporters, focusing on print-first expansion, Nieman Lab

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-10-10 19:13

Concentration and Politics Hinder Israel Newspapers, The New York Times

As one of Israel’s mainstream newspapers (Maariv) appears on the verge of closing, and another (Haaretz) faces strikes protesting its plans to lay off employees, The New York Times looked at the crisis in the country’s print media. The market has been skewed by the free national daily, Israel Hayom, introduced five years ago by a pro-government American billionaire, but the article provides an interesting summary of some of the challenges encountered by media in small-language markets.

Newspaper journalism is in crisis, The Guardian

“I loved the idea that, while I walked and talked and learned who I was, while I grew and even while I slept, great journalists were establishing the first draft of history,” writes John Tiffany in this fervent tale of his relationship with newspapers over the years. Tiffany, associate director of the National Theatre of Scotland, has put together a play, Enquirer, which aims to address the question “Are we seeing the dying days of the newspaper industry?”

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-10-08 19:03

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The World Editors Forum is the organization within the World Association of Newspapers devoted to newspaper editors worldwide. The Editors Weblog (www.editorsweblog.org), launched in January 2004, is a WEF initiative designed to facilitate the diffusion of information relevant to newspapers and their editors.


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