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29 April 2022

Bloggers, journalists and media managers discuss future of media and blogosphere at SPIEF-2021

The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) opened today. A Creative Business Forum was held on the first day of SPIEF, giving creative industry leaders a platform to discuss the prospects for the development of the Russian creative ecosystem. 

Gazprom-Media Holding organised a discussion panel called “Will the blogosphere replace professional journalism?” The panel brought together top bloggers, professional journalists and media managers. The panelists included the communications director of Gazprom-Media Holding Sofya Kvashilava, NTV news host Elena Spiridonova, head of Viacom’s youth and music channels (MTV Russia, MTV Live HD, MTV Rocks, MTV Hits, MTV Dance, VH1) Yana Churikova, bloggers Maria Pro and Nadezhda Strelets, and RTVI CEO Olga Piven. Konstantin Sidorkov, director of music projects at Mail.Ru Group, moderated the session.

The panelists were unanimous in their response to the central question of the session - can the blogosphere replace professional journalism - agreeing that a mutual synergy between blogging formats and traditional media is the future. 

The discussion also touched on the topic of how much responsibility bloggers have for the content they create and how this sphere should be regulated. Sofya Kvashilava, communications director of Gazprom-Media Holding, noted that the blogosphere must start by regulating itself.

“I am for self-regulation, so that there are boundaries within which the blogosphere will develop.”
Sofya Kvashilava
Communications director, Gazprom-Media Holding

NTV news presenter Elena Spiridonova spoke about the main differences between bloggers and professional journalists. 

The question of whether it is possible to study blogging as a profession was also brought up during the discussion. According to Sofya Kvashilava, communications director of Gazprom-Media Holding, as of today there is no systematic approach to training professionals in the blogosphere.

“Not every person who has a smartphone will automatically become a professional blogger. A blogger is, first of all, a “one-man band” who must be well-versed in all stages of content creation: writing, filming, editing. So there is always a team behind the blogger because you need a good camera and a creative screenwriter to produce the content. Even when you are a talented person, you still need to learn the craft because without that you won’t be able to make high-quality content on a regular basis.”
Sofya Kvashilava 
Communications director, Gazprom-Media Holding