South Asia Media Summit

The South Asia Media Summit 2013 was organized by All Pakistan Newspaper Association (APNS) in Islamabad on 20th & 21th of February 2013. Distinguished publishers, editors, advertisers, social media evangelists from India, Srilanka, Nepal, and Bangladesh attended the summit to discuss the opportunities as well future challenges faced by print media industry.


The Summit was unique of its kind as it was based on theme of Hollywood fictional character James Bond. The basic inspiration for choosing this theme came from the fact that James Bond character has been reinvented through times but the vitality and relevancy of character always remained intact.

The President APNS, Sarmad Ali in his opening speech said that Print Media needs to keep on reinventing itself while keeping its relevancy and vitality intact. Talking about purpose of SAMS, he said that we hope that SAMS would provide media people with a strategic vision which is inevitable for the growth of Print Media industry. The SAMS addressed the basic challenge of reinventing print media in the new media ecosystem marked with the growth digital media to make it part of reader’s 24/7 consumption cycle.

South Asia Media SummitThe role of media in creating regional peace and harmony was discussed. While acknowledging power of print media, The Prime Minister commented that People in media industry are in better position to remove the bad thoughts as they shape public opinions. He said that media could play a very effective role in developing regional peace and tranquility as they can control people minds and perceptions. The information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira also emphasized role of Media in bringing regional peace and harmony. He said that Media can soften the minds and develop public opinion because media is the real force. The minister said peace in Pakistan is vital for India and vice-versa, which can be possible through positive public opinion and exchange of media delegations between the two countries.

Former Federal information minister, Javed Jabbar described media as very influential tool with a potential to override the power of Judiciary, legislature and executive thus making it more important than the latter. The summit also addressed the means to promote bilateral relationship between India and Pakistan. Talks were held about how Indian Newspaper society and All Pakistan Newspaper society can contribute towards growth of not only print industry but also intra-regional peace and harmony. Krishna Prasad; an Indian journalist and Editor-in-Chief of Outlook expressed his concern over failure of Indian media in communicating Pakistan’s common people thoughts and aspirations to the Indian People. He said that India Media talks are all about ISI and Pakistan Army. It has never been able to tap common people of Pakistan. He says electronic media is especially is guilty of more jingoism than reality. Krishna Prasad had also put forward a proposition of starting journalists exchange program between India and Pakistan. The CEO of Times of India, Ravi Dhariwal says that success of Times of India lies in the fact that this newspaper writes for common people only; not for political or commercial purposes.
Another debated revolved around whether digital media should be viewed as competitive or complementary to print media. While considering digital media as an addition to print media Vijitha Yapa said that when Television was introduced, it was believed that it would give a blow to print media industry but on the contrary print media industry has flourished over the time. Gobi Krishnan special correspondent termed newspapers as “big daddy” of the media and said that Newspapers are dying is a myth.

Hameed Haroon, the CEO of Dawn while addressing the governance problems in Pakistan said that whole system in Pakistan is anti-learning. He further stated the right to information law and centralized media policy needs to be revised by the Government as they intend to undermine the freedom of the press and media. He says “to love it or leave” is not the prudent strategy for print media; we ought to fight off challenges in order to secure the future of Print media.
Another important development in the Summit was to discussing ways to add value in advertising through innovation which would lead towards increase in revenue of Print industry. Masood Hashmi; CEO Orient McCann Erickson while agreeing that innovation and creativity creates much more impact on readers and delight them pointed out that print media industry in Pakistan holds conservative approach as far as innovation in print advertising is concerned. Sam Balsara, an eminent name of India’s marketing and advertising industry said Pakistan can learn a lot from India’s advertising innovation strategies. As a result of this discussion, Sarmad Ali, announced that he promised to reinvent innovation in print media advertising strategies Blogger Information.

Guest Post By : Javaria Ahmed 

Do Good Mob, the name itself speaks volume about the team of people who are bound and determined to spread some positivity in the society. The Do GOOD Mob has already taken its first step by celebrating this Valentine Day -a day of emotions and expressions with the hardworking people of Islamabad who keep our city neat and clean. Yes! We are talking about street sweepers and trash collectors who worked a great deal to make our residences a better place to live in. The Do Good Mob

Today early in the morning, the team of Do Good Mob ventured out to distribute dry-fruits, sweets, candies, balloons, and clothes among the sanitation workforce team of capital city Islamabad. These small gifts wrapped in flamboyant wrappers were a gesture of gratitude and acknowledgment to boost up morale of these local people.  Many Students, young professionals and even some senior photographers like Mr. Usman Ghani took out some time from their busy schedule to join the mob. 

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Initially, this idea was floated one year back by the CEO of Launchpad Interactive and was executed today by all the volunteers who were invited and kept updated through the platform of Facebook.

But this is just the beginning! The Do Good Mob team is planning out to take a step ahead to bring some positive impact in the society.

Guest Post By : Javaria Ahmed 


They say charisma is something you are born with, which is true in some cases but I believe charisma is something you can cultivate, and that’s what Mark Zuckerberg has done! He invested time and infused meaning into the results of his employees; that’s how he cultivated charisma. And this charisma has resulted in more than 8 million active Pakistani users. Have you noticed that now Facebook has literally changed the way we communicate and apparently Facebook itself does nothing at all; it’s us who create content, like, share and interact. We get to see each other’s photos, share our thoughts and opinions, Like and criticize things we don’t like, make communities, play games and make friends.

Admit it; whether you are young or old, Facebook is a part of your life! As per August 2011, Pakistan had 5,135,220 users on Facebook and the figured jumped to 8,042,940 within 17 months ONLY! Pakistan currently ranks 28th among the countries using Facebook with a 4.36% penetration of population. It won’t be wrong to say that Facebook has quickly spread like a virus and nobody has been able to escape so far.


I was amazed to see the statistical data which shows how rapidly the number of Facebook users has increased. Karachi being the largest city of Pakistan had the largest number of Facebook users in August 2011 i.e. 1,376,620 and this number has increased to 2,126,220 as of January 2013. And not only this, number of Facebook users in Lahore have increased to 2,086,260 which previously was 1,542,600. Similarly Islamabad ranks third in the number of Facebook users in Pakistan with a total of 905,720 which was 632,540 just 17 months ago. But if we look at the info graphics of Rawalpindi, the number seems to decline, because previously it was 463,280 and now it is 432,120. On contrary to this, cities like Peshawar and Quetta have had a remarkable increase in the population using Facebook, Quetta with 56,980 users in 2011 has shown the most rapid increase and the figure had jumped to 143,880 which is a tremendous increase. Peshawar had 170,420 users in August ’11, and the number has risen to 353,120 users.

These are the figures of major cities of Pakistan; almost every city in Pakistan where internet service providers are present, majority of people use Facebook and it’s not just the teenagers or youth who are active on Facebook; people belonging to age bracket of 30-60 are also utilizing this platform and they account for 40% of the total population present on Facebook. Number of users in Faisalabad being 235, 580, in Hyderabad being 254,440 and in Chitral and Gilgit being 2140 and 10,440 shows the strong captivation of Facebook in Pakistan.

Facebook is not just a hub of entertainment; it is an opportunity for brands to advertise, communicate and grow, a chance for young people with bright ideas and aims to become entrepreneurs of tomorrow, a platform for everyone to meet, greet and share and people are literally enthralled and spellbound by Facebook.