Media Leaders and Drik discuss potential of New Media

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Rural Visual Journalism Network launched in Bangladesh

Dhaka, 26 November, 2012: Drik held an interactive global dialogue today, with media leaders looking at the potential of New Media and the creation of content to suit the evolving market place.  Saiful Islam, CEO Drik in his welcome address stressed the importance of moving into the global market place with products using new media, citing the twitter book as an example of new forms of publishing.

The interesting dialogue had Ayperi Karabuda Ecer, Vice President Pictures at Thomson Reuters, Paris, France and Sylvia Cadena from the Information Society Innovation Fund, Australia joining by video conferencing as guest experts. 

Ecer pointed out how Reuters is moving on with new applications to interactive formats to tell the whole story using multimedia. Participants had an opportunity to see the Reuters “Wider Image” where each story expands from a single image to give more context through a variety of formats to include slide shows, sequence and sound. “Without multimedia one can no longer be competitive in the current market place,” Ecer said. She recognizing that Asia remained the only growth area for newspapers, and warned the participants to prepare for the shifting media landscape where photographs accompanied by sound would dominate.

Sylvia Cadena, from the Asia Pacific Network Information Center (APNIC) coordinator for the ISIF Asia fund, spoke to participants about the forthcoming small grants and awards programme. Funds provides grants up to 30,000 AUS$, for organizations that can implement innovative programmes with use of the Internet. Call for applications will be made in January 2013 on the website

Dr. Shahidul Alam, Managing Director of Drik and Muhammad Aminuzzaman, Project Manager, Rural Visual Journalism Network (RVJN) jointly illustrated with a live demonstration the making of a real time news story using 3G technology. A mock interview was taken outside the Drik premises and the participants in the Gallery could see the interview on a dummy newspaper page. The real time video was webcast through the Internet using a central video webcast server of DrikICT.

This was followed up with examples how Bangladeshi journalists are grasping the new technologies in the innovative initiative, the Rural Visual Journalism Network (RVJN). District correspondents are trained and supported by RVJN to produce multimedia stories from rural Bangladesh using only an iPod touch for both shooting and editing their features. RVJN project is a finalist in India’s Manthan Awards in the “eNews and Media” category.


Participants were excited by the RVJN stories. “It’s revolutionary” said multimedia trainer Arnob Chakraborty, Head of Department, Broadcast and Multimedia, Pathshala South Asian Media Academy. Altaf Mahamud, Editor and Publisher, felt the technology would be a huge boost for the 350 online newspapers in the country.  Some were anxious about issues that can come up when hard news stories are reported. Additionally participants voiced concern about the Government’s banning of YouTube and the subsequent negative impact of this action on the free availability of online content.


Contact: Chulie de Silva
Communications Manager
Tel: +880 1927 122 141

Please Retweet #RVJN #drik #ipod #internet #openyoutubenow

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About Shahidul Alam

A photographer, writer, curator and activist, Shahidul Alam obtained a PhD in chemistry at London University before switching to photography. He returned to his hometown Dhaka in 1984, where he photographed the democratic struggle to remove General Ershad. A former president of the Bangladesh Photographic Society, Alam set up the award winning Drik agency, the Bangladesh Photographic Institute and Pathshala, the South Asian Media Institute, considered one of the finest schools of photography in the world. Director of the Chobi Mela festival and chairman of Majority World agency, Alam’s work has been exhibited in galleries such as MOMA in New York, the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the Royal Albert Hall and Tate Modern in London and The Museum of Contemporary Arts in Tehran. He has been a guest curator of the Whitechapel Gallery, the Musee de Quai Branly and the Brussels Biennale. Alam’s numerous photographic awards include the Mother Jones and the Howard Chapnick Awards and the Open Society Institute Audience Engagement Grant. A speaker at US universities, Harvard, Stanford and UCLA, Oxford and Cambridge universities in the UK and the Powerhouse Museum in Brisbane, Alam has been a jury member in prestigious international contests, including World Press Photo which he chaired and Prix Pictet. An Honorary Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society, Alam is a visiting professor of Sunderland University in the UK. He is on the advisory board of the National Geographic Society and the Eugene Smith Fund. His recent book “My Journey as a witness” was listed in the “Best Photo Books of 2011” by American Photo. Former picture editor of Life Magazine John Morris considers the book “The most important book ever written by a photographer”
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  2. Pingback: DrikNews wins Manthan Awards | ShahidulNews

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