The Quint, The Scroll and ABP win big at South Asian Digital Media Awards 2018

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Digital Media Awards
South Asia Digital Media 2018 award winners, Hyderabad, India

WAN-IFRA India Annual Conference made a comeback in Hyderabad this year, with over 300 publishing executives from over 25 countries, to discuss digital-first approach in newsrooms, the future of news publishing, and print media trends.

The 26th annual conference, WAN-IFRA India 2018 (26 and 27 September), is co-sponsored by The Indian Newspaper Society. The much-awaited third edition of the ‘South Asian Digital Media Awards’ was presented at the event and over 30 media organizations were awarded under 10 different categories.

“This platform is a novel way to recognize digital media initiatives by publishers from South Asia. It is heartening that participants to the 3rd South Asia Digital Media Awards of WAN-IFRA has increased by 50% to 125 this year and 30 winners have been selected,” said DD Purkayastha, managing director and chief executive officer of ABP Pte Ltd.

Recognizing best practice innovation

The awards, a joint initiative by WAN-IFRA and Google, recognize best practice innovation in digital publishing worldwide. The awards are presented in South Asia, Asia, Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Latin America. The Gold award winners will subsequently compete for the World Digital Media Awards that will be announced in Glasgow in June during the 71st World News Media Congress 2019.

This year, The Scroll won the coveted Gold award in ‘Best in News Website’ category. The Quint bagged the gold for ‘Talking Stalking’ under the ‘Best Innovation to Engage Youth Audiences’ category. The ‘Best Digital Start-Up’ saw two Silver award winners – Sakal Media Private Limited for the Agrowon App and The Hindu for Briefcase.

“The South Asian Digital Media Awards are a huge source of encouragement to the young team at The Quint, pushing us towards more meaningful journalism and better innovation in storytelling,” said Ritu Kapur, founder and chief executive officer of The Quint.

Here is a complete list of winners:

Best Branded Content Project
Gold: YoursWisely by Indian Express for Medtronic – World Hearing Day
Silver: Quintillion Media for The Quint and Madhya Pradesh Tourism
Bronze: Jang Media Group for The News HBL PSL

Best Data Visualization
Gold: NDTV Convergence for NDTV Elections
Silver: Dhaka Tribune for The hungry children of Mother Ganges
Bronze: BBC News Indian Languages for BBC India Visual Journalism team

Best Digital Marketing Campaign
Gold: ABP Pvt Ltd for AnandaUtsav 2017 Digital Campaign
Silver: The Daily Star for ‘Praner Vasha’- Mother Language Day Special
Bronze: Amarujala.com for Amar Ujala Samwad

Best Digital News Start-up
Gold: madrascourier.com (Madras Courier)
Silver: Sakal Media Private Limited (Agrowon App) and
Silver: The Hindu (Briefcase)
Bronze: Sakal Media Private Limited (Sarkarnama)

Best in Lifestyle, Sports, Entertainment Website or Mobile Services
Gold: Arré for Arré India
Silver: NDTV Convergence for Swirlster
Bronze: The Hindu Group for SportstarLive

Best in Social Media Engagement
Gold: ABP Pvt Ltd for Ebela.in 2017 Festive Song
Silver: Quintillion Media Pvt. Ltd for My Report
Bronze: BloombergQuint and Quintype for Integrating WhatsApp Communication for Business
Bronze: Mathrubhumi Printing & Publishing Co Ltd for Mathrubhumi women’s day special – addressing gender bias on social media

Best Innovation to Engage Youth Audiences
Gold: Quintillion Media Pvt. Ltd for Talking Stalking
Silver: Jang Media Group for Jang VR
Bronze: The Indian Express Group for inuth.com

Best News Website or Mobile Service
Gold: Scroll.in (Scroll.in)
Silver: BBC News Indian Languages (BBC Hindi)
Bronze: Malayala Manorama Company Ltd. (Malayala Manorama News App)

Best Reader Revenue Initiative
Gold: Swarajya and Quintype for Preserving Indic Heritage
Silver: Business Standard Private Limited for Business Standard Premium – Digital Subscriptions
Bronze: Dainik Bhaskar Digital for Autobot

Best Use of Online Video (including VR)
Gold: Scroll.in for Your Morning Fix
Silver: BBC News Indian Languages for Crossing the Sky
Bronze: Quintillion Media Pvt. Ltd for Rape is Consensual: Inside Haryana’s Rape Culture

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.

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– Naresh Khanna

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