Tuesday | 13. December 2016

Future of Journalism: Master Student Networks with Big Players in Media at Publishers' Summit 2016

In the digital age, media companies are facing rapidly changing business challenges. How integrity and quality can still be guaranteed was discussed by international media experts and politicians at the Publishers’ Summit 2016 on November 7th and 8th in Berlin. Invited by German Magazine Publishers' Association executive Peter Klotzki and Macromedia PR-Professor Dominik Pietzcker, Master student Nora Werbeck was able to participate in the key meeting of the big players in publishing and twittered live for the university.

The Publishers’ Summit of the German Magazine Publishers Association (VDZ) is one of the most important meet-ups of media publishing experts. This year, the summit's most pending issues were the freedom and variety of the press. Especially in difficult political times, media has the responsibility to offer comprising, true information that shows a very high quality – that was the main tenor of the summit. Not only Federal Chairman of German Liberal Party FDP Christian Lindner as well as Wolfgang Schäuble, Federal Minister of Finance, uttered an appeal for high quality journalism and freedom of the press in their keynotes. “Who meets the freedom of the press with an axe kills democracy", President of the European Parlament Martin Schulz also warned in his speech at Publishers’ Night, when VDZ awarded him the “Golden Victoria European of the Year 2016”. Can Dündar, former chief editor of the Turkish newspaper “Cumhuriyet”, having been prosecuted by the Turkish governmentlives and living in exile, received the award for "Freedom of the Press" – also a clear sign set by the association for how crucial the freedom of speech is for human society.

“We don’t need content managers along all channels, but rather journalists who can write and have their knowledge straight!" (HORIZONT)

While people worldwide still have to fight for their freedom of expression, in industrial western countries' journalism faces the primary challenge of keeping up with new technologies. How can media companies offer steady high quality journalism when everyday the rules of the game are changing immensely? On the second day of the summit, this was the topic of discussion at the chief editors talk with Giovanni di Lorenzo (Die Zeit), Tanit Koch (BILD), Christian Krug (Stern), Uwe Vorkötter (HORIZONT), Robert Schneider (Focus) and Jörg Quoos (FUNKE-Mediengruppe). The editors offered future advice especially to young, up-and-coming journalists: While the digital revolution is a fact, content is still king. “We don’t need content managers in all channels. Learn how to write! This is the core of journalism”, requested HORIZONT’s chief editor Vorkötter. BILD chief editor Tanit Koch was on the same page: “We are missing heterogenity in the newsrooms. Simply studying journalism is not enough, we also need specialized subject matter experts!”

To sum up: Who knows his craft and finds his special field of interest is perfectly prepared for tomorrow's media industry

Interviewed by Nora Werbeck, chairman of publishing company Axel Springer Dr. Andreas Wiele added: “Online Publishing offers us huge publishing possibilities and endless virtual space. Those who are able to find their field of expertise within this spectrum will never have to worry about their career. The secret to success is to make even 1,000 lines about fishing so exciting that you aquire readers.” Being skilled at your profession, that is what matters most even in the technology-driven 21st century. According to most of the summit's participants, Publishing 3.0 on the other hand means fragmentation of media and a growing personalization of content for highly individual consumers. Thus, Nora Werbeck’s résumé of two days of exclusive insights into future journalism in a nutshell: Those who find their content niche AND know how to work professionally will quickly find out how to rule in the media society of tomorrow.


Learn more about the Graduate School or the Master's program Media and Communication Management!

At the Publishers' Summit 2016, big players of the media industry discussed the future of journalism.

Prof. Dr. Dominik Pietzcker gave master students Mathilde Lamotte and Nora Werbeck the chance to get exclusive insights into current trends in journalism.

An exceptional higlight was the Publishers' Night that honors important personalities in publishing for their achievements. In 2016, the committee honored Can Dündar, former chief editor of the Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet, for his fight for the freedom of press.

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