Wan-Ifra South Asian Digital Media Awards 2017

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Wan-Ifra
The awards honor publishers for setting a benchmark with their digital offerings. Photo: Wan-Ifra

Wan-Ifra India 2017 opened in Chennai invoking news publishers to come together and support each other in the face of the serious challenges to press freedom and quality journalism. The event, attended by over 425 media professionals, applauded the award winners of the second edition of South Asian Digital Media Awards 2017.

The awards were presented on 13 September at Wan-Ifra India 2017, the 25th annual silver jubilee conference held in Chennai. A joint initiative by Wan-Ifra and Google, the awards recognize best practice innovation in digital publishing worldwide. The awards are presented in every region—South Asia, Asia, Middle East, Africa, Europe and Latin America—and winners from each region subsequently compete for the World Digital Media Awards, which will be announced in Berlin on 10 October during the World Publishing Expo & Digital Content Expo, IFRA/DCX.

This year’s winners were awarded in ten different categories, which included Best News Website, Best Lifestyle, Sports or Entertainment Website, Best Use of Online Video, Best Data Visualization, Best News Mobile Service, Best Lifestyle, Sports or Entertainment Mobile Service, Best Innovation New Product, Best Social Media Engagement, Best Digital Advertising Campaign, and Best Innovation to Engage Young Audience.

The Hindu secured the coveted gold award for ‘Best News Website’ while The Quint won silver and NDTV the bronze award. This year also had the introduction of the new category ‘Best Innovation to Engage Youth Audience’ which is a take from Wan-Ifra previous ‘World Young Reader Prize’ and The Hindu won the coveted ‘Gold’ in this category. The gold and silver awards for ‘Best Lifestyle, Sports or Entertainment Website’ went to Arre.com and Sportstarlive.com, respectively. The Quint had an evening to rejoice as it also won the gold and silver awards for ‘Best Use of Online Video (including VR)’ for its ‘Mannequin Challenge’ and ‘Acid: The story of a beautiful woman.’ The bronze award in this category went to Aajtak.in. The complete list of awards is as follows:

Best Data Visualization
Gold: The Quint – Ganga clean up report
Silver: Pakistan Herald Publications – Banned outfits in Pakistan openly operate in Facebook
Bronze: Pakistan Herald Publications – A Pakistani woman’s workplace dilemma

Best News Mobile Service
Gold: NDTV Convergence
Silver: The Times of India App
Bronze: Malayala Manorama

Best Lifestyle, Sports or Entertainment Mobile Service
Silver: Times Internet Ltd. – World Travel Guide App

Best Innovation New Product
Gold: The Quint – IPL2017 Microsite
Silver: Jang Media Group – Jang Real
Bronze: Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. – The citizen reporter mobile App

Best Social Media Engagement
Gold: The Daily Star – A Mother’s Day Special
Silver: eSakal.com
Bronze: Mathrubhumi ClubFM94.3 – April Fool’s Day
Bronze: NDTV Convergence

Best Digital Advertising Campaign (including Branded Content)
Gold: The Daily Star – Rise High Bangladesh
Bronze: Mathrubhumi.com – Milma Project

Best Innovation to Engage Young Audience
Gold: The Hindu – Young World Club
Silver: NDTV – Dettol Banega Swachh India
Bronze: Mathrubhumi – Silver Bullet Learning Solutions

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

It is the right time to support our high-impact reporting and authoritative and technical information with some of the best correspondents in the industry. Readers can power Indian Printer and Publisher’s balanced industry journalism and help sustain us by subscribing.

– Naresh Khanna

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