This week we were delighted to welcome Peter Clifton, Editor-in-Chief of the Press Association, for the latest in our series of #LutherNetwork events.

Clifton began by giving an overview of how he got his first break in journalism, working on a local newspaper. Currently Editor-in-Chief at one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious news agencies, he was previously the editor of Ceefax, and was involved in the founding of BBC News Online in 1997. Clifton reflected on how much the industry has evolved since he first began writing for the Northampton Chronicle and Echo in the 1980s, noting that reporters now have to be multi-skilled to provide content for print and digital.

He highlighted the large amount of breaking news that comes from Press Association journalists every day, and Clifton sees the organisation as the backbone of the UK media. He talked about the different aspects of the service they provide and the ways in which they are diversifying in order to offer news content to subscribers in a variety of formats. The Press Association has invested heavily in new equipment and technology, and their journalists are increasingly using smartphones, 360° cameras and footage obtained from drones.

#LutherNetwork - Peter Clifton

Guests at the event came from a range of backgrounds, including communications professionals from a variety of companies, charities and professional organisations. They questioned Clifton on his views on the current media landscape, including how news agencies are working to attract a younger audience. Guests discussed coverage of the recent General Election and how the news agenda is increasingly driven by which stories get the most ‘clicks’. Clifton explained some of the efforts the Press Association makes to ensure stories are balanced and verifiably true. He also discussed a new project looking at how artificial intelligence can be used to help create local stories.

Our thanks go to Pete and our guests for joining us.

The next #LutherNetwork event will be with Professor John Curtice, political scientist and pollster in October, and in November we’ll be joined by Ian King, Business Presenter and columnist, for Sky News and The Times.

If you would like to find out more about Luther Network events, including information on how to attend, please email