Trust the theme as Future Forum rebrands, takes in TV

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Australia's NewsMediaWorks has revamped its annual Future Forum with a new name, a broader focus, and "visionary thinker" Rachel Botsman as its headline speaker.

The new name is the Inform News Media Summit, and Botsman's topic is "the new era of trust", on which, the group says she is the global authority.

Botsman (pictured) "studies and teaches how technology is transforming human relationships and what it means for life, work and how we do business.

"In an era of fake news, she will explain why consumer trust is collapsing in all kinds of institutions and what impact the rise of 'distributed trust' will have on brands and media companies."

Named by Monocle as one of the world's top 20 speakers, she is a regular writer and commentator in publications including Harvard Business Review, The Economist, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Wired and the Australian Financial Review, as well as on CNN, BBC, NPR and ABC, where she has been a Q&A panellist. Videos of her TED talks have been viewed more than three million times.

A new book, Who Can You Trust? is set for publication in October.

The new format of the event - slated for September 6 at Sydney's new International Convention Centre - will align with the broadening media interests of the three remaining publishing companies which own NewsMediaWorks - News Corp Australia, Fairfax Media and Seven West Media - with discussion and participation from a wider newsmedia sector incorporating television and radio as well as print and digital platforms. This reflects publishers increasing involvement in TV, and anticipates changes to Australian media law which may see the Ten Network - currently in administration - owned by a newsmedia-related entity.

Organisers say the event has been recast to provide greater opportunities to discuss platform-agnostic news content and commercial strategies, and will introduce a greater depth of expert opinions to draw from to extend the appeal of the conference to the wider news media sector in Australia and the Asia-Pacific.

"It will illustrate the diversity of our publishers now and for the future media landscape in this region," chairman Michael Miller says.

The change will provide the opportunity for a diverse range of speakers, "better represent our newsmedia industry and showcase our brands and culture of innovation".

The Newspaper of the Year awards - better known as the PANPA awards - and Advertising and Marketing Awards remain, with the Newspaper of the Year awards gala dinner held at the conclusion of the conference. The Advertising and Marketing Awards are to be presented at a cocktail party the following evening, September 7.

NewsMediaWorks - which has relocated to News Corp Australia's Holt Street, Sydney address - was founded in 2006 by APN News & Media, Fairfax Media, News Corp Australia and Seven West Media (West Australian Newspapers). APN (which now calls itself HT&E) has since largely exited the newsmedia industry - with the float of NZME as a separate entity, and the sale of its Australian regional newspapers to News - to concentrate on the radio and out-of-home sectors.

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