INDVSTRVS Managing Editor Joanne Leila Smith discusses ethical Journalism at Chillon Castle, Switzerland.

INDVSTRVS Managing Editor Joanne Leila Smith discusses ethical Journalism at Chillon Castle, Switzerland.

INDVSTRVS was launched in November 2016. It is a cross-sector publication based in Singapore that produces long-form editorials with a focus on international development, innovation and human excellence in business.

Our Managing Editor, Joanne Leila Smith shares her thoughts on some commonly asked questions about the INDVSTRVS project below:

Your news platform has an interesting name – INDVSTRVS. What was the inspiration behind this name?

INDVSTRVS (in-dust-rus) is a combination of industry + us. It has been a preoccupation (I have many) and a wonder to me about how human beings have been given remarkable, yet different capabilities to serve each other, and find purpose, through work.

Also, the unusual spelling was for SEO purposes as ‘Industry’ would have made it page gazillion on google.

Why is INDVSTRVS focusing on international development, innovation and human excellence in business?

Digital transformation affects all industries and all regions and businesses are now subjected to global conditions. We want to give readers useful, meaningful and positive stories that took a macro-industry and global, rather than traditional, domestic approach to business news.

INDVSTRVS believes that online content should be free and real, why is that so?

It’s a philosophical position that is shared by many. Particularly for digital natives, where users grew up with the expectation of access to free content, this position best reflects user sentiment.

If we are intellectually honest, we must concede that news can never be independent or non-partisan if the publication is constrained by gated communities, paywalls or pay-to-play. Restricting the flow of quality content for profit is antithetic to the ideals of journalism standards. There are other measures to success than fat profits.

I took on INDVSTRVS as a life-long project; to be an example of ethical journalism. My hope is to make INDVSTRVS a sustainable business and a trusted source for business journalism.

What makes INDVSTRVS stand out from other publications?

We are truly long-form so do deep dives into the subject matter. Short-form has its place, but I have never subscribed to the assumption that the audience is not smart. I assume the audience is way more intelligent than me, and that dictates our editorial standard.

We also have a mandate to never publish slander or gossip in exchange for click generation (under the ruse of ‘in the public interest’). We find the practice immoral, distasteful, and beneath the dignity of the profession, hence our brand promise – No Gossip. No Clickbait. Just Business.

How does INDVSTRVS create organic content that adds value for readers?

We only rely on trusted sources for content; including direct-to-source, PR agencies, leading market research agencies and university press. We record all our talent interviews and always try to faithfully reflect the subjects’ intention.

You are passionate about ethics in journalism. What can you share about the importance of ethics to young journalists? What principles should budding journalists possess?

Today’s scoops will become yesterday’s news. But your decisions live with you forever. Always have it front of mind to protect the dignity of the person you are writing about as a person’s reputation is more precious than gold.

Even if you personally disagree with the subject’s politics or find their agenda repugnant, your job is not to judge or position the audience, but to faithfully and dispassionately convey the subject’s words. The audience is smart. Let them come to their own conclusion.

How should PR Agencies pitch a story to INDVSTRVS?

Journalists often say, ‘give me an angle!’ and PR Consultants will say, ‘give me your questions!’ but in truth, I have found the angle usually emerges during the interview process, so I try not to have fixed ideas or questions when I interview someone. I prefer to stick to themes and see where the conversation takes us. By keeping things fluid, the talent relaxes more and tends to be more open to share personal perspectives; which makes for a better read.

All of us have pet peeves, what are your PR pet peeves?

None. I appreciate all of you. Let’s work together to make great stories.

If you stand for what we stand for, we want to hear from you. Email Joanne at editor@indvstrvs.com