Tag Archives: Perugia

Volunteers at the International Festival of Journalism


The International Festival of Journalism 2012 would not have been made possible without young journalist volunteers.Volunteers from all across the globe  contributed to the organization of the event. Over 200, mostly students and journalist enthusiasts, reached Perugia from 27 countries being: Armenia, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Costa Rica, Finland, France, Georgia, Germania, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldavia, Montenegro, Nepal, Netherlands, Pakistan, Poland, Czech Republic, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Spain, UK, US and Hungary.

Most of the volunteers, however, came from different parts of Italy from Milan to Catania. Cecilia Dubla, Antonia Cosentino, Chiara Amici and Valentina Manzoni shared with me their experiences at the Festival.

Pictures and thoughts from Perugia IJF 2012

Wadah Khanfar - ex director of Al Jazeera

Wadah Khanfar gave a Keynote speech at Teatro Pavone in Perugia that greatly inspired the audience, including me. To be honest, it was probably the most interesting and, in a sense, revolutionary speech at the festival. He resigned from Al Jazeera a few months ago because, according to his speech, he wanted to become  part of a new media that is going through a huge transformation period that, eventually, will lead to futuristic integral media that will use more and more citizen journalism. He said that big news corporations  that only seek to be competitive with other newsrooms and to broadcast VIP people will DIE! They will die also because they often forget that their mission is to serve the people and not interests, power, governments or organizations. During his speech, he noted many times that social media and the bloggers are the future and that big news organizations will turn more and more to Facebook, Twitter or whatever comes next, to gather news stories. Due to high expenses, news organizations will no longer send their correspondents, journalists to places to cover the events; they will use zero costs or  low costs citizen journalists via social media. Wadah Khanfar encouraged everyone in the audience to become more media active and start producing stories with your smart phones or other devices that are relevant to you or a small group of people. The last but not the least, he challenged the audience by saying that a good journalist, if he knows that his news organization serves the interests of not only the people, should resign! Indeed, a fresh way at looking at the current and future state of the media.

Charlie Beckett - director POLIS London School of Economics; Evgeny Morozov - journalist, author of "The Net Delusion"

I also enjoyed very much 3 panel discussions with Evgeny Morozov – the author of “The Net Delusion”.

Kristinn Hrafnsson - spokesperson of Wikileaks

After a panel discussion on “Wikileaks. The Italian Secrets”, I had a short chat with Kristinn Hrafnsson on the case of the US soldier Bradley Manning.

Andy Carvin - National Public Radio

Andy Carvin, National Public Radio’s senior product manager for online communities, also gave an inspiring  Kaynote Speech at Teatro Pavone. The Columbia Journalism Review referred to Carvin as a “living, breathing real-time verification system” and suggested his might be the best Twitter account to follow in the world. Andy used his Twitter account to cover the breaking news about the Arab Spring. In 2011, he and his Twitter followers utilized crowd sourced research to debunk false stories that Israeli weapons were being used against the people of Libya. Here is an interesting article from the Guardian who calls him “the man who tweets revolutions”.

International Festival of Journalism

An awful sleepless night  before my last exam this winter session in Media Politics, Globalization, Ethics and Law. 6 a.m 23 of March Friday. Shower – done. Breakfast – done. Take the dog outside – yessss. Nice clothes to wear – ready. Time to check my emails. 27 e-mails, as usual nothing seemed new or interesting – Facebook, Twitter, Groupon – Liliana Bounegru: Place offer (please confirm asap). Really? 8 a.m. time to go. To go where? Exam? What exam? Who cares after all?

I was offered a place to take part in a Data-driven journalism workshop “Getting stories from Data” at the  International Festival of Journalism in Perugia (Italy). The festival takes place every year in Perugia. It offeres many free panels, workshops, documentaries, keynote speeches and many more activities.  Journalists, students, media specialists, news agencies from all over the world gather to discuss the current media trends in the society.

Among the 400 speakers who will attend the festival this year are: Kristinn Hrafnsson – spokesperson for WikiLeaks, Wolfgang Blau – editor of Die Zeit, Roman Anin – investigative journalist from Novaya Gazeta, Clive Edwards – ex editor for current affairs at BBC, Evgeny Morozov – journalist and author of the Net Delusion, Marco Travaglio and many more.

Cheap German wings tickets – bought. A nice hotel in the center of Perugia – booked. Subscription to various workshops – done. Speakers for the possible interviews – contacted. And now – a lot of patience.