A celebration of innovative media in Asia

IMS takes part in the large-scale Splice Beta media festival in Chiang Mai, Thailand, to support and celebrate innovative media and media start-ups from across the Asia region.

For the last decade, the media industry has been filled with despair. Narratives around loss of audiences, trust and revenues have set a somber tone and the belief in the viability of media has dwindled year by year with operations finding it increasingly difficult to attract and withhold new talent.

However, the picture is not as gloom as it appears. Particularly if one looks past legacy media outlets and at the growing start-up scene instead. Across the Asia region, influential independent media are redrawing the information map and shifting focus from mainstream to community-focused news and information distribution – primarily online but also offline. Several of these can be considered hyper local media initiatives that aim to reach out and engage communities in areas where the mainstream media has little to no reach.

“What is remarkable about these media is their abilities to find a niche and capture audiences who have either lost faith in mainstream media or been completely overlooked by them”, says IMS programme development adviser Emilie Lehmann-Jacobsen.

“Those are the media that we believe in — and those are the ones we wish to celebrate in Chiang Mai and help thrive and develop more sustainable businesses”.

Over the course of 3 days, innovative media and media start-ups from across Asia will be gathered in Chiang Mai, Thailand to network, exchange experiences and gather inspiration from talks, masterclasses and social get-togethers. IMS brings representatives from 11 different initiatives across the region to the festival but a total of 250 people is expected to attend the festival – including investors, donors, academics and mentors.

“Splice Beta is all about the power of entrepreneurship in Asia. IMS is excited to be part of bringing this community together”, says Lars Bestle, Head of Department for Asia, IMS.

“We see this as a milestone event of sharing experiences and learn from each other in a critical transformation of the Asian media landscape. Hopefully this festival will be the first of many similar gatherings across the region assisting emerging media start-ups to further develop and bring good public-interest journalism to audiences across the region”.

As a lead up to the Splice Beta festival, IMS is hosting a gathering for media partners that we see taking on important roles as information distributors in their respective countries/communities and hope to collaborate with in the years to come.

“This is chance for us to get to know the potential partners better and learn more about their respective needs and challenges”, says Emilie Lehmann-Jacobsen.

“These insights are key for us if we are to offer custom-made solutions for each initiative and assisting them at the level they are current at in their development”.

The Splice Beta Media festival takes place from May 1 to May 3. The full programme can be viewed here: https://www.thesplicenewsroom.com/splicebeta2019/

IMS’ Media Meet-Up event for selected innovative media takes place on April 30.