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IYESF at the X International Conference in Kaliningrad


On October 28, 2021 at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Kaliningrad, the tenth International Conference “Russia-Europe: Actual Problems of International Journalism” was held in Russia for the first time. The key topics of the conference were the position of international journalism in the global information system, as well as the form of the journalist profession, which is acquiring new features under the influence of the latest communication tools. Russian and foreign journalists, media representatives, media business, public organizations met to find approaches to international information cooperation and agreement.




The conference was moderated by Yuri Minaev, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of “International Affairs” magazine, Aleksey Orlov, Director of the Russian Language Broadcasting Directorate of Russia Segodnya MIA, Maria Mokhovikova, Head of the press center “Russkiy Mir” Foundation, and Alla Shelyapina, Deputy Chairperson, co-founder of the Women's League of Journalists and Bloggers.


Alexander Bikantov, Head of the Press Center, Deputy Director of the Information and Press Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry, stressed that in shaping the news agenda, cooperation and mutual understanding are necessary: “The actions of Russia and Europe in the information environment are not always coordinated. To create a positive news agenda, we need a constructive dialogue, exchange of knowledge and content.”


The jubilee conference, held under lockdown conditions, could not bypass the current international situation in the world, forming certain standards for working with information. Lightning-fast spread of messages in a politicized media environment opens-up room for manipulation of the mass public consciousness. Experts noticed that this becomes the reason for the occurrence conflict situations between peoples or states.


The jubilee conference drew the participants' attention to the problems of the modern profession of a journalist. Experts believe that modern journalism ceases to produce meanings, and, as a rule, conveys a description of the actions taking place in reality, in a distorted and sometimes inaccurate form. Armen Hovhannisyan, editor-in-chief of International Affairs magazine, chairman of the organizing committee of the Russia-Europe conference: topical problems of international journalism, points out the need to find new ways of interacting with the audience: “We live in an era of post-truth, when any message or post on social networks can form an inaccurate picture of reality. In this regard, the journalist needs to look for new approaches to his audience, which will help the reader understand why he should choose this or that media or information product”.


One of the themes of the current - anniversary - event was the so-called "new normality", which they are trying to introduce into the minds of people with the help of various cunning evasions, such as the "smart feed" of the social network Facebook, which independently gives the user a selection of "necessary" publications, or trends of its video analogue Tik -Tok.


Another problem of modern journalism has become the so-called fake-news or "fakes", sometimes massively fabricated even by quite, it would seem, reputable publications, not only in pursuit of a sensation, but also with a quite conscious desire to throw information mud at the target indicated by the customer, as of which whole states act as well.

Director of the Russian-Spanish Center of the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA) under the President of the Russian Federation Olga Pirozhenko noted that at the present time around the world there is no longer an information war, but a cognitive one, since the struggle in it is for influence not only for minds but also the souls of people.


According to other speakers, along with the information and cognitive wars, there is also a "war of press releases" - when absolutely different official messages about its results are issued from the administrations of the negotiating parties following the same summit meeting.


Within the framework of the meeting, a round table session on the topic "Counteracting the aggravation of nationalist anti-Russian actions in the CIS countries and former Soviet republics" was also held.


The President of the RPO “BRICS. World of Traditions” Lyudmila Sekacheva, made a presentation on the topic "BRICS Public Diplomacy as an Ambassador of Moral Values and Traditions" in the form of the Presentation of the International Online Video Competition "Revival of the Hospitality Traditions of the BRICS Peoples" with a demonstration of a colorful and informative video report of the BRICS TV media platform, prepared following the results of the Competition (link: https://tvbrics.com/shows/konkurs-videorolikov-stran-briks/).


At the end of the meeting, Lyudmila Sekacheva addressed the participants with the words: “A life-affirming culture is able to calm people down and set them up to unite in our difficult times, acting, if you like, as a source of a moral elixir, a moral vaccine for people suffering from the virus of despondency and helplessness. It is public diplomacy in alliance with the media that can harmonize the information space around a person through culture, preserve and strengthen his spiritual and mental state.”


The conference was also attended by Akil Mohammad, Founder and Chairperson of International Youth Edu-Skills Foundation, President of Asian Students Association in RUDN University and Zhang He, Vice President of the General Association of Chinese Students in Russia. Young BRICSologs sanctified the future palns of both organizations, spoke about new youth projects in the humanitarian space of the BRICS countries in their speech on topic “Positive Aspiration of Youth of the BRICS Countries for Unity. Projects and Public Activities” which includes the International Youth Forum “BRICS PLUS” (link to the Forum website: https://www.bricsplusforum.org/ ) and International Russian-Chinese Youth Forum. Both the projects were developed during the pandemic and selected as the winners of competition of the Gorchakov Foundation held withing the framework of Eurasia Global Forum in 2021.


“Young people are creative, energetic and active, always striving forward and do not want to be satisfied with what has already been achieved. BRICSologists will not be stopped by any obstacles, we will always find a way out of a difficult situation for the development of the BRICS youth track” Akil Mohammad emphasized.


The conference "Russia and Europe: Actual Problems of Contemporary International Journalism" was organized by the magazine “International Affairs” with the support of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation (Ministry of Digital Science).


The very first conference of this format was held in 2011 in Paris, becoming the most important event of that year in the international media space and showing the importance of interaction between European media and Russian ones, subject to respect for pluralism, the desire to find a compromise, and respect for alternative opinions.



Russian participants in the meeting were:

Alexander Bikantov, Head of the Press Center, Deputy Director of the Information and Press Department, Ministry of the Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

Alexey Nikolov, CEO RT,

Boris Kostenko, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the First Russian National Channel,

Ivan Surma, Head of the academic department at Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry (online),

Olga Pirozhenko, Director of the Russian-Spain center of the RANEPA under the President of the Russian Federation (online),

Yadviga Yuferova, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of “Rossiyskaya Gazeta” newspaper


Elena Glishchinskaya, Editor-in-Chief of the “Mirovye Lidery” magazine, political commentator, Sputnik Radio

Alla Shelyapina, Deputy head and co-founder, Women League of Journalists and Bloggers

Lyudmila Sekacheva, President of the RPO “BRICS. World of Traditions”


Among the foreign participants of the conference:

Chavdar Minchev, editor-in-chief of the journal "International Relations" magazine Bulgaria

Prof. Kiyul Chang, PhD, Visiting Professor, at Kim Il Sung University in Korea,

Tsinghua University in China, Korea University in Japan

Nicholas Cobb, Director of the Westminster Russian Forum, Great Britain

Anis Bajrektarevic, Professor and Chairman of the International School of Law and Global Politics, Austria

Lily Ong, journalist, PhD candidate at MGIMO, public activist, Singapore

Thomas Reper, publisher and author of the Anti-Spiegel portal, Germany

Vladimir Snegirev, Chief of the Prague Bureau of the “Rossiyskaya Gazeta”, Czech Republic

Jan Campbell, Ph.D., professor, Czech Republic

Dr. Jay Scott Younger, International Affairs Advisor, Presidential University

Indonesia, Hon. Research Fellow at the University of Glasgow, UK

Arif Asalioglu, General Director of the International Institute for the Development of Scientific Cooperation (MIRNAS), Turkey

Claude Cholet, Chairman of the Observatory of Journalism, France

Raffaele Panico, journalist of the professional association of Lazio, writer (Italy,

online)

Akil Mohammad, Founder and Chairman of the International Public Organization

"International Foundation for the Improvement of Education and Skills among Youth", President Association of Asian Students of RUDN University, India

Zhang He, Vice Chairman of the China-Russia Youth Exchanges Association under Union of Chinese Students in Russia, China

Elena Cherysheva, editor-in-chief of the information portal Sputnik Media, Estonia




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