WAN-IFRA India 2014 takeaways: Extend the brand, boost engagement and protect credibility

WAN-IFRA India 2014, the 22nd annual conference of WAN-IFRA in the Indian sub-continent, offered a look at success stories from the news publishing industry and also considered possible paths for the future.

by WAN-IFRA Staff | September 23, 2014

More than 40 speakers joined the two-day conference in Delhi on 17-18 September and shared their successful business practices.

The conference brought together 380 delegates from 20 countries and offered three parallel tracks of events: Newsroom Summit for editors; Printing Summit for print production managers, and the Crossmedia Advertising Summit for advertising and business development executives.

A highlight of the conference was a panel discussion of leading editors from the region: Sanjay Gupta, (second from left in photo) Editor & CEO of Dainik Jagran and WEF Board Member; Jacob Mathew (second from right), Executive Editor, Malayala Manorama and immediate Past President, WAN-IFRA; and Serene Goh (right), Editor-Schools of The Strait Times, Singapore. Chairman was Raj Chengappa, (left) Editor-in-Chief, The Tribune, India.

During the panel discussion, the editors noted that as news publishers they sell credibility – and that credibility is not to be sacrificed at any cost.

The panelists also agreed that the future of the news publishing industry demands good content and compelling journalism. On a related issue, the panelists felt today’s journalists need better training in order to make the most of today’s tools and to best perform their jobs.

The conference presentations revolved around the theme of engaging with the readers, generating revenue from multiple platforms and operating efficiently. Some of the highlights emerging from the deliberations:

  • Extend the news brand to other platforms, and maintain credibility.
  • Use images / photos more as a way of communication and better engaging the readers.
  • The nature of young people is associated with insecurity and youth has perplexed editors, but advertising does not always follow the exclusive youth-centric / youth-targeted news products.
  • Chasing social media is largely a waste of time. Instead, newspapers should look at their inherent strengths.

The conference closed with a presentation and demonstration of “Drone Journalism” by Sithikorn Wongwudthianun, Photo Producer of Bangkok Post, Thailand, about how the paper has used drones in news gathering.

The conference was sponsored by HT MediaMalayala ManoramamanrolandFuji FilmGoss InternationalMitsubishiTechnovaMicro Inks and CCI.

The WAN-IFRA India 2015 Conference & Expo will be held 2-4 September at Bombay Exhibition Centre, Mumbai, with a full-fledged expo and conference sessions. For details, please write to

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