Robert Schmidt-Nia opening the IPTC Spring Meeting 2023 at the e-Estonia Briefing Centre on Monday 15 May.
Robert Schmidt-Nia, Chair of the IPTC Board of Directors, opening the IPTC Spring Meeting 2023 at the e-Estonia Briefing Centre on Monday 15 May.

We have just finished the IPTC Spring Meeting in Tallinn, Estonia. Our first face-to-face IPTC Member Meeting since 2019, those who could attend in person were very happy to be back together, enabling collaboration, knowledge sharing and building bonds across organisations in the media industry.

We were also joined by over 50 online attendees from IPTC member organisations, who braved sometimes difficult timezone differences to view many of the sessions in real time and participate in discussions. Other IPTC members who weren’t able to be there either physically or virtually will be able to watch recordings of the sessions soon.

Themes this time obviously included Generative AI, but also fact-checking and provenance, social media embedding and social stories, 

Highlights of the Monday included a special briefing about digital citizenship and digital governance at the e-Estonia Briefing Centre, where members heard from an Estonian government representative who described Estonia’s electronic tax, medicine, administration and even e-voting system, all powered by the cryptographically-protected digital ID card and the X-Road system of interconnecting all of e-Estonia’s services, across both the private and public sector.

Also on the Monday we heard from Gerd Kamp (dpa) who explained how dpa are using Web Components technology to embed social media into their articles in a way that’s much easier for their customers to process. We also heard Working Group presentations and new standard proposals from the NewsML-G2 Working Group and the News in JSON Working Group, whose lead Johan Lindgren (TT) handed over the reins to Ian Young (PA Media / Alamy) who promises to be a fine leader of the group in the future. We say many thanks to Johan for all his contributions to IPTC over the past 25 years!

We also heard from Evi Varsou (ATC) who demonstrated some of ATC’s tools for fighting fake news and misinformation, used by some of the world’s top news organisations.

Day 2 saw Dave Compton (Refinitiv, an LSE Group Company) describe some of their work on handling augmenting news content in real time with analytics information. Then we heard invited speaker Maria Amelie (Factiverse) talk about her troubles with the Norwegian authorities, being deported, and eventually getting Norwegian law changed to support refugees like herself. She now runs the startup Factiverse which is looking at using AI to help promote fact checks as fast as possible, via their site Factisearch (among other projects).

After a discussion on rights and RightsML, we heard from Estonian startup Texta (who provide several tools for media organisations, including an automated comment feed moderator that works in many languages), and German startup who have created a tool that lets media companies quickly and easily create social posts from news stories – still very relevant even as Google AMP is being wound down.

Tuesday was rounded off by Jennifer Parrucci (The New York Times) presenting the NewsCodes Working Group‘s update, and Paul Kelly (Individual Member) giving an update on the huge amount of work on IPTC Sport Schema from the Sports Content Working Group.

On Wednesday, after an EGM voting on an update to the Articles of Association, we heard from Charlie Halford (BBC) on Project Origin and C2PA, and Sebastian Posth of International Standard Content Code.

We also voted in updates to NewsML-G2 and ninjs, which will be announced here soon.

We’re already looking forward to the Autuymn Meeting, held in October online, and Spring Meeting 2024, hopefully in New York City!