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World Editors Forum FAQs

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World Editors Forum FAQs

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Why did the World Association of Newspapers create an Editors Forum in 1994?

Problems that are specific to editors require answers specific to editors.

In 1994, WAN’s research and experience made it obvious that the role of the newsroom editor was growing and changing, not only because of shifts in management techniques, but because of new technologies and competition from new media (cable TV, Internet, etc.).

A few months later, twenty well-known editors decided to create their own group within WAN, the World Editors Forum. Today, the World Editors Forum remains the voice of Editors-in-Chief around the world within WAN-IFRA, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, following the merger of WAN and IFRA in 2009.

What happens at the World Editors Forum conference?

Our annual conference (held at the same time as the World Newspaper Congress) gathers more than 500 senior editors from around the world. As regular attendants know, when you register for the Forum, you can move freely between the Forum and the Congress, which is more focused on marketing and management issues. Between the two events, they usually attract about 1200 delgates. It is a unique occasion to meet and network with editors and publishers from around the world.

The 2012 World Editors Forum will take place in Kiev, Ukraine, from 2-5 September. Last year’s event was in Vienna, Austria.

What makes WEF services better than other services for editors?

WEF’s members and board of directors are all editors-in-chief or senior news executives. Who better to provide up-to-date information on what’s happening in print and online media?

We publish Trends in Newsrooms, an exclusive annual report analyzing all the latest newsroom trends and innovations. And WAN-IFRA publishes an annual World Press Trends report, a 700-page database that can give WEF members an in-depth understanding of what’s going on in newspaper markets around the world.

We also use data and analysis from the reports in seminars, conferences, blogs and produce other special reports to help newsroom decision-makers. Because we belong to the profession, we can provide the right information at the right moment.

In a nutshell, what does WEF membership offer me as an editor?

Unique opportunities. WEF offers you a global platform for exchanging newsroom best practices and innovations among editors through formal and informal channels. It gives you the opportunity to communicate with and learn from editors and newspaper specialists from around the world.

By doing this, the WEF allows you to anticipate major editorial shifts. It helps you maintain editorial excellence and readership loyalty despite the increasing competition from TV and online news. It gives you the tools to drive the newsroom revolution, instead of being a victim of it.

We bring daily solutions and information about common editorial issues, including:

  • How to embrace new media while strengthening your print product
  • How to apply best practices in newsroom management
  • How to select, train and motivate journalists to foster journalistic excellence
  • How to create integrated multi-platform newsrooms (print, internet, mobile, etc)
  • How to redesign and bolster content through design
  • What to make of ombudsman practices and readership interactivity
  • How to develop supplements and weekend editions
  • Achieving a global understanding of an increasingly competitive media environment

How do I learn about trends I am not aware of and apply them to my own paper?

At our annual Forum, all of our speakers place their remarks in a global context and complement their insight through special expertise on regional developments. The innovations and analysis they propose are specific but can be applied to your newspaper.

I deal with photojournalism, design and infographics - are there any events geared toward my interests?

Absolutely. Full sessions are regularly dedicated to these issues.

I’m the editor of a local newspaper with a limited circulation. Why should I join the World Editors Forum?

Because many major innovations start at small newspapers.

At the annual conference, you always learn from local newspaper editors who are dealing with situations similar to yours, and your insight is just as valuable to them.

I’m a foreign editor. Is your organization strictly dedicated to editors-in-chief or executive editors?

You have every reason to join. WEF membership begins to be helpful when you have to manage 20 journalists or more. Just so you know, we have front-page editors and photo editors as members. Welcome to the club!

I don’t run a daily newspaper. Can I join?

Of course. Whether you are the editor of a weekly magazine, an online news editor or run a monthly niche publication, or simply interested in journalism and newspapers, you are concerned with the same issues.

In 2006, WEF opened itself up to journalism schools as well and now has several academic members.

Newsroom management, ethics, editorial excellence, the creation of multi-platform departments, business models and press innovations matter to everybody in the profession. By all means join.

I’m an editor in a developing country. A €750 fee is too high for me. Can you help me out?

Talk to us. We’re always open to new members and do our best to accommodate them.

How do I explain to my publisher that it’s worth €750 to join WEF?

First, both from a short and long term perspective, a single good idea, project, innovation or networking experience is worth far more than €750 to a newspaper. And you won’t be getting just one good idea, you’ll be getting hundreds, year-in and year-out, from the world’s newspaper industry experts.

Secondly, WEF membership is a real time saver; you are immediately aware of innovations and experiences that you might never find out about by reading the mainstream press. Lastly, cross-fertilization is the most powerful way to drive major shifts.

Are there any hidden costs?


How do I join? Where do I sign? Is on-line payment OK?

Please see here.

What is Trends in Newsrooms?

Trends in Newsrooms is an annual report brought to you by the World Editors Forum designed to track the year’s most important trends in newsrooms around the world. It provides practical case studies, an overview of important news and innovations, as well as theoretical analysis about what editors can do to improve their newspaper’s editorial quality, newsroom management, design, business model and more. Trends in Newsrooms is designed to help editors and media professionals, and is produced with contributions from well-known editors and media professionals.

For more information about Trends in Newsrooms, please see here.

What is the Newsroom Barometer?

The Newsroom Barometer is a newly established survey of editors around the world, organized by the World Editors Forum, in conjunction with partners such as McKinsey & Company, Reuters and Zogby International. The Newsroom Barometer measures and comments on editors’ views of relevant editorial issues, such as the integration of online, interaction with readers, threats to editorial independence, and more. Every year, there will be a new edition of the Newsroom Barometer, using many of the same questions, to compare the evolution of editors’ responses.

For more information about the Newsroom Barometer, please see here.

What is the Editors Weblog?

The Editors Weblog is a World Editors Forum initiative designed to facilitate the diffusion of information relevant to newspapers and their editors. The Weblog is updated five days a week with relevant news about the press and editorial quality. Content includes news as well as analysis, which provides exclusive insight into the initiatives and strategies of some of the world’s most innovative newspapers. More than 2,500 editors and media professionals read the Editors Weblog every day.

For more information about the Editors Weblog, please see here.


Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman


2011-04-11 14:59

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2010-11-26 12:42