Wan-Ifra joins the Washington Post Press Freedom Partnership

Aspen Digital program announced as first supporting partner

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Wan-Ifra
The Washington Post Press Freedom Partnership

The Washington Post Press Freedom Partnership, a public service initiative from The Post to promote press freedom worldwide, today announced the addition of Wan-Ifra, the World Association of News Publishers, to its growing coalition of partners.

The Partnership also announced its first supporting partner, the Aspen Institute’s Aspen Digital program, which will help elevate the work of the Partnership to key stakeholders working on expanding protections for journalists around the world. Wan-Ifra and Aspen Digital join a global group of eight partner organizations – Committee to Protect Journalists, International Press Institute, International Women’s Media Foundation, James W. Foley Legacy Foundation, National Press Club, One Free Press Coalition, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and Reporters Without Borders.

In the two years since its launch, The Post Press Freedom Partnership has provided a voice to journalists in need, reaching decisionmakers worldwide who have the power to influence the outcome on these critical issues,” said Fred Ryan, publisher, and chief executive officer of The Washington Post. “We are excited to once again expand the partnership and extend the impact of our efforts to support the rights of journalists worldwide.”

Wan-Ifra is delighted to enter into this prestigious partnership and join committed friends and colleagues from around the world in defending press freedom,” said Vincent Peyrègne, chief executive officer of Wan-Ifra. “Collaboration is vital if we are to overcome the many challenges ahead. These are worrying times for press freedom and for anyone who shares a passionate belief in the right to freedom of expression. Yet through it all, we must remember the positive impact news media has on our societies by keeping us informed. Wan-Ifra believes this is worth defending, and we are excited to join The Washington Post in their efforts to do just that.”

In a new chapter of the long-standing battle for press freedom, would-be autocrats around the globe are using the Covid-19 pandemic to tighten their grip on power and crackdown on journalism,” said Vivian Schiller, executive director of Aspen Digital. “At stake is the public’s right to know and, especially in these times of crisis, human life, itself. The Washington Post Press Freedom Partnership is standing up for truth when we need it most, and Aspen Digital is eager and ready to be part of this critical initiative.”

Readers can follow the latest updates from partner organizations and press freedom issues worldwide on Twitter at @wppressfreedom. The Press Freedom Partnership newsletter provides a curated view of the current challenges affecting press freedom on the first Monday of each month. Readers can subscribe here.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels 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. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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