Image photographed from artists at work at conference

We each take from it what has purpose.

This had purpose for me.

In the next 10 years, Survey Monkey’s research uncovered that 72% of people polled put creativity above technology as a top priority.

Those people, around 300 of them, Survey Monkey’s VP Jon Cohen told me, included conference attendees and workers mainly from Western territories.

The research, unveiled for the first time to the gathering, is released in full on the Guardian site tomorrow.

2015's Guardian Summit, a much looked forward to UK event for publishers and media pros, provided another stellar line up of speakers and experts.

Gary Vaynerchuk, Viners and Youtubers, the future of agencies, lightening pitches from start-ups and the ten next trends, were some of my memorable highlights. Like I said to each his or her own.

Vaynerchuk invigorated the audience with a presentation, part-stand up, part performance lecture goading attendees to take risks and commit resources. You can’t win it, if you’re not in — was his National Lottery-type rhetoric.

Superstar Viners and YouTubers provided the fright-factor for brands and traditional media. ‘If you don’t get us, well tough, because we’re coming at you with our army of fans’, could have been the message.

According to Ariel King, content strategist at Arena, and an Alumni of the University where I lecture ( yes we did high-fives), television doesn’t get the YouTubers, yet.

Alongside the message, the uber onliners squeezed in a tutorial on striking the best selfie pose. Say Arrghhh, not cheese.

This morning Peter Koechley, co-founder of Upworthy, a social media platform for brands gave a lecture in journalism to, er, seasoned journalists. It was well intentioned and good natured.

But Koechley unwittingly showed why, despite the bridging of the tech-gap between traditional and newer media, frankly the schism is still of Niagara Falls proportion.

Empathy, Koechley, urged was a prerequisite to journalism of the new age. Just as well then that he stated, Upworthy wasn’t journalism — more story telling.

Tell us the facts, I’m not interested in empathy, was the riposte from the fictitious editor of HBO’s The Newsroom in a morning news conference. It so easliy personifies what current traditional editors think.

Alastair Reid, Editor of asked Koechley, whether practising empathy wasn’t disingenuous. If you like a brand, how can you ever tell difficult truths?

Koechley’s on to something, but it requires getting to grips with a term that, as it stands, flies in the face of objective, impartial journalism.

To the denouement then, as discussed in the penultimate panel looking at the agencies of the future. When the tech continues to change the landscape and everyone is privy to it, it is not the defining factor, it’s the people stoopid.

Creativity is the key. Disruption is inevitable. Brands will act more like newsroom said Ije Nwokorie, CEO of Wolff Olinssso agency.

To stay relevant Nigel Gilbert, EMEA’s vice president of strategic development, concluded that we should be be prepped for change.

It’s a sobering thought. There are further challenges ahead, and what’s required is a creative work force — but there appears to be a deficiency in attracting good talent.

The challenge is on to nurture creativity amongst future workers — and there was little sign within the debate of experts that they were high on confidence about how this could be achieved.

That’s food for thought, at the least for the next summit. I think I have a plan.


David would like to thank the Guardian for their hospitality.

David Dunkley Gyimah is a Knight Batten Winner for Innovation in Journalism and an International award winning videojournalist. His PhD examines journalism storyform of the future. His career spans 28 years including the BBC (Newsnight), Channel 4 News and ABC News. He recently presented at Apple Store. More from his website and twitter @viewmagazine

Top Writer & Creative Technologist, Int. Award Winner. Cinemajournalist. Cardiff Uni @jomec. PhD (Dublin). Visiting Prof UBC, Ex BBC/C4News. Apple profiled.

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