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Follow Up, World News Media Congress

Anna, Jeremy, Landon and I just returned from a trip to DC for the 67th World News Media Congress hosted by WAN-IFRA.

The pre-conference began on Sunday afternoon with a roundtable discussion on smart watches and other wearables. News alerts going straight to your watch? Just another new medium for newspapers to navigate.

In conjunction, Nancy Lane of the Local Media Association lead a panel discussion on how small and mid-sized publishers can lead the digital transformation. Our friends Chris Edwards from the Gazette Company and Tom Shaw from Shaw Media participated in that discussion.

WAN-IFRA hosted an excellent welcome reception Sunday night at the Newseum, a very cool place with the perfect atmosphere for the event (check it out next time you’re in DC!).

The conference officially kicked off on Monday, welcoming attendees from all over the world, including the US, Africa, Latin America, and all over Europe. The global conferences are meant to share best practices, provide educational __, and bring people together to solve challenges everyone in the industry is facing.

This time, the central challenges were centered around wearables, gamification, virtual reality in journalism, drone and robo-journalism, and on a much more serious note, the safety of journalists and how to protect the right to free speech.

There was a heartbreaking speech given by Marcelo Rech as he presented the 2015 Golden Pen of Freedom Award to honor journalists who were killed in the line of duty (1,100+ since 1992). The Charlie Hebdo attacks made headlines this year, and all over the world governments, terrorist groups, and radical individuals attempt to stifle the press by any means necessary.

The main takeaways:

We’re grateful to WAN-IFRA for letting us be a part of this event. We’re looking forward to attending the World Publishing Expo in Hamberg, Germany as well as the Digital Media Latinoamerica conference in Mexico City in October.  We hope to see you there!

Make sure to check out #wnc15 on Twitter and Instagram to check out more cool quotes, photos and follow ups from the event.

Photo of OwnLocal Team at WAN-IFRA World News Media Congress

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