Mahmut Mowardi, senior editor of Utusan
The news conference of Mahmut Mowardi, senior editor of Utusan newspaper of Malaysia was held in special desk of Foreign Media in Tehran Press Festival at Tehran's Mosalla building.
Subject: "challanges facing the newspapers, (with emphasis on the state-owned Utusan newspaper) in the era of social media"
He started his lecture by expressing his pleasure at his first presence in Iran. He continued by pointing to the concerns of his friends who reminded him of being a Sunni Muslim and going to a Shia country of Iran, may not be easy and free from tension.
Of course he clarified that he did not blame them, neither was his feeling hurt as he knew that those comments stemmed from being misinformed.
He went on to say that, " despite all these, I look at this travel as an opportunity to see my religious brothers and sisters and hope to improve the relations between Iran and Malaysia"
He breifly introduced Malaysia by saying that his country is a nation of twenty million people and is known for its twin towers.
On Utusan newspaper he said that Utusan was established in 1939. It reflected the concerns of the lower layers of the society and in 1997 it went on the internet and all its issues, eversince then became available online. But due to the lack of enthusiasm of its audience, it was not very successful as most people still preferred to read the paper version of the newspaper.
He also pointed out that due to advent of online newspapers, the advertising and readership of print newspapers had fallen dramatically and it is getting worse as the university research indicates that Whatsapp, Facebook and Instagram have the highest number of users.
At the end of his speech he expressed hope that by producing better quality of products, paying closer attention to the method of presenting the facts, staying away from biased opinion the traditional media, while trying to concentrate on the youth as audience, can cope with the online journalism.