Dec 15, 2015

GLOBAL AWARDS RECOGNIZE THE WORLD’S BEST SPORT STORYTELLERS AT GLITTERING CEREMONY IN ABU DHABI

 

Mohamed Ebraheem Al Mahmood: Hosting this monumental event confirms our stand on the development of media

Gianni Merlo: The awards prove that storytelling is key to successfully portraying the sport scene

 

Abu Dhabi, December 15, 2015: The elite in sport journalism were awarded for their work at a glittering ceremony in the UAE capital tonight as the Sport Media Pearl Awards, attended by Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth and Social Development, capped off a six-month journey to find the best in sport media.

The evening at the Etihad Towers complex in Abu Dhabi welcomed a host of notable faces from the world of sport as Italian footballer Alessandro Del Piero joined NBA star Yao Ming and Olympic Gold Medallist Jonathan Edwards.

The Awards are the first internationally to be dedicated to awarding excellence in the sport journalism industry and have seen a huge number of submitted entries.

This night, the finalists, along with sport media professionals from around the world, convened at Etihad Towers as the final winners were announced at the event hosted by former Olympic athlete Jonathan Edwards. The winner of each category was awarded the prestigious Pearl trophy and US$10,000 in prize money, with the second and third placed finalists receiving US$5,000 each.

An expert executive committee led by the AIPS (International Sports Press Association) studied more than 700 international submissions across a range of categories from sport photography and weblog to writing and audio. Eighty-five submissions were then shortlisted at an event in Abu Dhabi in November.

The judging panel, led by AIPS President Gianni Merlo and consisting of 11 sport media professionals including Sport Media Pearl Awards Jury's Special Ambassador, Yao Ming, a former NBA All-Star, then began the process of choosing three finalists for each category.

H.E. Mohamed Ebraheem Al Mahmood, Chairman and Managing Director of Abu Dhabi Media, said: “This ceremony represents a great achievement for the finalists of the Sport Media Pearl Awards and also for Abu Dhabi as the emirate strives to develop the outstanding talent there is in sport storytelling.
Abu Dhabi Media is a leading media organization and we continue to foster talent in all aspects of the evolving media landscape. To be associated with the very best in the world, and having them here in Abu Dhabi, will add momentum to the process of inspiring excellence
.”

Managed by AIPS and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media, the Sport Media Pearl Awards have set out to celebrate the industry’s unsung heroes – the men and women who bring the drama of sporting achievement to life for a global audience. By showcasing the best in sport journalism, they aim to help foster a new generation of talent.

The Awards recently completed a worldwide promotional tour visiting 14 countries and 15 major sport events, including the UEFA Champions League Final in Berlin, the Special Olympics in Los Angeles and the European Games in Baku. At each port of call, sport journalists were encouraged to submit their work.

Gianni Merlo, President of AIPS, said: “The journey to the ceremony has been exhilarating. It has been an absolute privilege to study the incredible work of so many talented journalists in all forms of sport media. The Sport Media Pearl Awards proves that the passion to tell the story of sport is as strong as ever.

 

Winners of a Pearl Trophy included:

 

Photography Athletic Prowess
Women more than shadows
Ricardo Erick Lòpez Hevia | Cuba | Granma

 

Photography Emotion
I just won!
Robbert Wijtman | Netherlands | CSC Sports Photography

 

Writing Best Column
How the Black Stars stabbed the nation in cold blood
Fiifi Anaman | Ghana | allsports.com.gh

 

Writing Best Colour Piece
Being poor in the richest sport
Mihir Vasavda | India | The Indian Express

 

Video Documentary
Doping – Top secret: The shadowy world of athletics
Hajo Seppelt | Germany | ARD

 

Video Action Sequence
Nina leaves with a smile
Zhu He | China | China Central Television

 

Audio
Rocky Marciano
Dario Ricci | Italy | Radio24

 

Journalistic Weblog
Too young for danger of death
Stefan Nestler | Germany | dw.com

 

As well as the main journalistic categories, there were several special categories, including Sport for a Better World, which focuses on coverage dedicated to a sporting initiative and aims to improve the lives of marginalized members of society. The winner of this category was Paul Radley of The National newspaper in the UAE with US$50,000 being awarded to Christina Noble, the non-profit organization that was the subject of Radley’s feature, “Street Kids Find Haven in Sport”.

Three further awards that were not open to submission – ‘A Life in Sport’, ‘Investigative Reporting’ and ‘Best App’ – were won by Jimmy Magee, Hajo Seppelt and L’Equipe respectively. 

 

A list of all the winning finalists is published at https://www.sportmediapearlawards.com/nomineesGallery

 




Nov 03, 2015

SPORT MEDIA PEARL AWARDS FINALISTS ANNOUNCED

Worldwide search for best sport storytellers reaches Abu Dhabi

Sport Media Pearl Awards finalists announced

Abu Dhabi, November 3rd, 2015: The best sport media storytellers in the world were revealed today as the nominees in the inaugural Sport Media Pearl Awards were announced at a ceremony in the UAE capital.

Launched at the Louvre Museum in Paris in March, the Sport Media Pearl Awards are the first international awards dedicated to the sport journalism industry.

The Executive Committee of AIPS (International Sports Press Association) has been studying more than 700 submissions from around the world across a range of categories from sport photography and weblog to writing and audio.

Today, 85 shortlisted contenders in all catogories were announced at the Rosewood Hotel in Abu Dhabi at an event hosted by former Olympic gold medallist Jonathan Edwards. The judging process will now begin to find the top three finalists in each category who will then be invited to Abu Dhabi for a lavish awards ceremony on December 15th, with the chance to win the prestigious Pearl trophy, US$10,000, and 2nd and 3rd place prizes of US$5,000 each.

The judging panel, led by Gianni Merlo, AIPS President, and made up of 11 sport media professionals including the international NBA legend Yao Ming as the Jury’s Special Ambassador of Sport, represents unrivalled experience that encapsulates the international value of the Sport Media Pearl Awards.

The jury members alongside Yao Ming are Gianni Merlo from Italy, AIPS President; Jamil Mohamed Abd Al-Qader from Jordan, President of the Arab Sports Press Association; Vincent Amalvy from France, Global Head of Sports of AFP; Jaap de Groot from The Netherlands, Chief Editor of the sport section of De Telegraaf; Donna de Varona from the US, President of DAMAR Inc.; Mark Gleeson from South Africa, SuperSport television soccer commentator and freelance journalist; Rainer Holzschuh from Germany, President of European Sport Media and publisher of Kicker - Sportmagazin; Gary Kemper from the US, IOC Consultant; Shinsuke Kobayashi from Japan, Chief Editor of the Sports News Section at Kyodo News; Neil Wilson from UK, Athletics and Olympic Correspondent of The Daily Mail for 25 years. The jury will now begin the hard task of choosing the final winners.

H.E. Mohammed Ebraheem Al Mahmood, Chairman and Managing Director of Abu Dhabi Media, said: “This is a very proud moment for us as Abu Dhabi takes centre stage in an international award that recognises the important role played by journalists in the world of sport and encourages the development of excellence in the sport media field.

“As a leading media organisation, we have a duty to foster talent by acknowledging those industry practitioners and enthusiasts across the globe whose reporting keeps the public engaged with sport.”

The Sport Media Pearl Awards recently completed a worldwide promotional tour visiting four continents, 14 countries and 15 major sport events, including the UEFA Champions League Final in Berlin, the Special Olympics in LA and the European Games in Baku, encouraging sports journalists to submit their work.

Managed by AIPS and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media, the Sport Media Pearl Awards have set out to celebrate the industry’s unsung heroes – the men and women who bring the drama of sporting achievement to life for a global audience. By showcasing the very best in sports journalism, they aim to help foster a new generation of talent.

Gianni Merlo, President of AIPS, said: “The Sport Media Pearl Awards play a very important role for the journalists’ profession that has recently faced difficult times.

“This event is an opportunity to show that journalism is still alive and still fighting for its principles. In the awarded pieces, as well as in all submitted works, we can rediscover the pleasure of sport as an instrument of global culture."

As well as the main journalistic categories, there are several special categories, including Sport for a Better World, which focuses on coverage dedicated to a sporting initiative and aims to improve the lives of marginalised members of society. In addition to the US$10,000 first prize, US$50,000 will be awarded to the non-profit organisation that features in the winning story.

Three further awards that were not open to submission – ‘A Life in Sport’, ‘Investigative Reporting’ and ‘Best App’ – will also recognise outstanding work in the industry.

When registrations officially opened for the Sport Media Pearl Awards in March, journalists, radio and television reporters, photographers and videographers – on traditional and new media platforms – were invited to submit examples of their best work.

The Pearl trophy will be awarded to the winners of the Sport Media Pearl Awards in December. The image of the pearl holds particular significance for Abu Dhabi’s heritage, where pearl diving formed part of its emerging economy. The pearl is also globally recognised as a symbol of uniqueness and superiority.

The Sport Media Pearl Awards nine categories open to submission are:

- Photography (Athletic prowess, Emotion)

- Writing (Best column, Best colour piece)

- Audio

- Video (Documentary, Action Sequence)

- Journalistic Weblog

- Sport for a Better World

 

A list of all the nominations will be published at www.sportmediapearlawards.com 

 

ABOUT ABU DHABI MEDIA

Abu Dhabi Media (ADM) is one of the fastest growing, multi-platform media and entertainment organizations in the Middle East. Established in 2007, ADM operates and manages 25 market-leading brands across multiple platforms, including broadcast, publishing and digital.

Through its diverse platforms, Abu Dhabi Media provides unique and compelling content that is entertaining, informative and engaging, targeting a wide base of audiences regionally and internationally.

Abu Dhabi Media adopts key initiatives that support the evolution of the UAE’s media industry and overall development plans.

 

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL SPORTS PRESS ASSOCIATION (AIPS)

The International Sports Press Association was established in Paris, in 1924, as L'Association Internationale de la Presse Sportive. The officially approved abbreviation of the name of the Association is AIPS and its headquarters are based in the Olympic capital Lausanne, Switzerland.  AIPS is the peak association representing the international sports media and consists of 156 autonomous National Sports Journalists' Associations worldwide. A National Association is an independent, duly constituted group of professional sports journalists working in print or electronic media and professional sports photographers. www.aipsmedia.com

 

Press Contact:

Tom Bushell

PR & Media Relations Director

Seven Media

+971 (0)55 123 8535

tombushell@sevenmedia.ae




Aug 05, 2015

BASKETBALL STAR YAO MING JOINS CAMPAIGN TO HONOUR THE WORLD’S BEST STORYTELLERS IN SPORT MEDIA

World’s first international sport journalism awards, hosted in Abu Dhabi, will celebrate an industry that is “vital to sport”

 

One of the world’s biggest sporting icons today has announced his commitment to the judging panel for a new global sport awards event to be held in Abu Dhabi.

Yao Ming, China’s most famous sporting figure for his exploits in the NBA and who remains an inspiration for many up and coming athletes confirmed that he will be part of the Sport Media Pearl Awards – a competition to showcase the very best in sport journalism.

Ming, a Global Ambassador for Special Olympics, was a leading player for The Houston Rockets, will be part of an elite judging panel looking at entries from sport journalists from all over the world who report on everything from amateur to professional sporting events.

The Sport Media Pearl Awards, managed by AIPS (International Sports Press Association) and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media, are the first international awards dedicated to the sport media industry. They are designed to put the spotlight on sport reporting and help foster a new generation of talent.

H.E. Mohamed Ebraheem Al Mahmood, Chairman and Managing Director of Abu Dhabi Media, said: "As a cultural gateway between East and West where global sporting influences converge, Abu Dhabi is ideally placed to host this groundbreaking international award.”

Submissions are now open in each of the six categories – Writing, Photographic, Audio, Video, Journalistic, Weblog and Sport for a Better World – and journalists from all over the world are being asked to submit their entries.

Furthermore, there are three special categories, which are not open for submission but will be awarded by the judging panel: A Life in Sport, Investigative Reporting and Best App.

Speaking ahead of the event in December, Yao Ming said: “At their very best, sport journalists deliver the passion and emotion involved in sport in a way that truly moves you.

“From writers telling the story where a competitor has beaten all the odds to achieve victory to the photographer who has perfectly captured an incredible sporting moment, these awards are there to highlight just how great they are.

“From a personal point of view I will never forget some of the reporting that went into chronicling my journey to the NBA and that is another big reason why I am so proud to be involved in the Sport Media Pearl Awards.”

A road show to promote the awards at key global sporting events including the Diamond League Athletics Championship in Qatar, the UEFA Champions League Final in Germany and the European Games in Azerbaijan got underway earlier this year.

Abu Dhabi will host the ceremony in December along with a special conference in the morning of the awards. The winners in each category will receive a trophy and $10,000.

For details of the awards and how to register, go to http://sportmediapearlawards.com

 

Press Contact

Tom Bushell

Seven Media

E: tombushell@sevenmedia.ae

T: +971 (0) 55123 8535




May 13, 2015

The Sport Media Pearl Awards road show will visit key global sporting events

A road show aimed at gathering submissions for the first international awards dedicated to the sport media industry began late last month with a call by the President of the International Sports Press Association (AIPS) for journalists to "showcase your indispensable contribution to global sport storytelling".

The Sport Media Pearl Awards road show will visit key global sporting events, among them the Diamond League Athletics Championship in Doha, Qatar, the UEFA European Championships U21 in Prague, Czech Republic, the FIFA Congress in Zurich, Switzerland, the UEFA Champions League Final in Berlin, Germany, the European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan, the Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada and the IAAF World Championship in Beijing, China before submissions close in September.

roadshow map

The road show has already visited Paris, France, the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Prague, the International Sports Media Forum in Turkmenistan, and events in Manaus, Brazil, Schwerin, Germany and Sochi, Russia.

The AIPS President Gianni Merlo presents the Sport Media Pearl Award in Aşgabat Turkmenistan

Most recently the awards were presented at a series of events in Kampala, Uganda, where Gianni Merlo, AIPS president, met journalists at the Vision Group, the country’s biggest multimedia platform. The awards were also introduced at a convention of journalists from the East and Central African Association and at a special press gala attended by the Vice President of the Republic and the Minister for Culture.

Managed by AIPS and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media, the awards seek to recognise and reward quality across all disciplines and platforms dedicated to sport reporting ranging from video to digital and audio to the written word.

The awards were announced last month at the 78th AIPS annual congress in the iconic Louvre, Paris, attended by over 300 delegates from over 100 countries.  Registrations and submissions from around the world have already been logged at the special website http://sportmediapearlawards.com.

Those submitting their work will be eligible for a $10,000 first prize and a week of events in Abu Dhabi leading up to final presentations this December.

Special interest has been shown in the Sport For a Better World Award, which offers $10,000 to the journalist highlighting a sporting event or initiative aimed at bettering the lives of the less fortunate and which pledges a further $50,000 to the enterprise that is the subject of the winning coverage.

Speaking at the launch of the roadshow Mr Merlo said: "This road show marks the beginning of a very important initiative for our industry, which mediates the world of sport to the ordinary enthusiast. The industry faces many challenges, especially in the digital age, and my plea to all sport media professionals is to take part in these awards because they are an opportunity to showcase your indispensable contribution to global sport storytelling".

HE Mohamed Ebraheem al Mahmood, Chairman and Managing Director of Abu Dhabi Media, said: "Abu Dhabi Media is pleased to host the Sport Media Pearl Awards.  The partnering with AIPS comes in recognition of the important role sport journalism plays across the globe.  As a leading media organisation, we see it as our duty to acknowledge and support those who deliver exceptional reporting to the public and foster and inspirational dialogue."

After submissions close, the 24 member AIPS Executive Committee will take on the task of reducing entries to 10 in each eligible category.  A special jury comprising 10 leading sport media professionals drawn from across the world and one special sport ambassador will decide the winner and two runners up, all of whom will receive a cash prize and an invitation to Abu Dhabi.  The composition of the jury will be announced in Abu Dhabi in early November.

A temporary exhibition showcasing submissions, and a special two-day conference dedicated to the sport media industry will take place in the week preceding the final awards ceremony.

Details of the awards, how to register and submit and eligibility at http://sportmediapearlawards.com

For any further inquiries please contact press@sportmediapearlawards.com.  

 




Mar 23, 2015

Submissions now open!

ABU DHABI/LAUSANNE, March 23, 2015 – Registration for the Sport Media Pearl Awards is officially open as of today, March 23, 2015. The awards, announced at the 78th AIPS Congress in Paris earlier this month, are managed by the International Sports Press Association (AIPS) and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media. Members of the media can register and submit their work at www.sportmediapearlawards.com

The awards represent a new platform for the celebration and development of sport media excellence among key industry practitioners and enthusiasts across the globe. The opening of submissions officially establishes the most significant international media accolade for achievement in sport storytelling.

Recognition  Sports recognition tends to be confined to athletes and players, leaving sport media professionals - those who mediate the exciting world of sport to the ordinary enthusiast - underappreciated.

Submissions The Sport Media Pearl Awards will be open to journalists, radio and television reporters, photographers and videographers on traditional and new media platforms recognized by their AIPS-affiliated National Sport Press Association. Freelancers will be able to submit their entries on the awards website and only entries published between September 1st, 2014 and August 31st, 2015 will be considered. Entries can be made in any language.

Submissions should only be made via the Awards’ online website before, September 7th, 2015. Supporting documents and proof of publication are also to be submitted only via the website. A maximum of 2 separate submissions per entrant are allowed across all categories of the awards.

All entrants must be persons who are eighteen years of age before September 1st, 2014 or older.

Prizes The one winner in each of the nine specified categories will receive a special trophy and a cash prize of  $10,000. The first and second runners-up in each category will also be invited to attend the awards ceremony in December and will receive a prize money of  $1,500. An award will also be introduced for coverage of a social project involving a sporting initiative aimed at bettering the lives of the less fortunate or marginalised. The Sport for a Better World Award will carry a prize of $10,000 for the one media professional in question and a $50,000 donation to the enterprise or project that is the subject of the winning coverage.  

Ceremony The awards recognise and reward quality, innovation and originality in sport storytelling. The annual event will be held in December this year in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE:  Abu Dhabi is a cultural nexus point between East and West, where global sporting traditions and influences converge. 

Trophy The Pearl is the symbol of the Sport Media Pearl Awards: the pearl trophy is awarded only only to the winner in every eligible category, in addition to the prize. 

The image of the pearl holds particular significance for Abu Dhabi's heritage, where pearl diving formed part of its emerging economy. The pearl is also globally recognised as a symbol of uniqueness and superiority.

Jury Final awards will be judged by an expert panel of 11 senior professionals from the sport media industry, under the chairmanship of the AIPS President and including also a nominated special Ambassador of Sport. The Jury will be basing its decisions on nominations put forward by a panel composed of the AIPS Executive Committee.

Finalists selected by the Jury will be invited to and must participate in the finalists’ programme in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates during December 2015. The Awards’ organisers shall pay for and arrange all flights, transportation accommodation and certain scheduled meals and will provide visa assistance for the entrant.

AWARD CATEGORIES

SPECIAL AWARDS CATEGORIES




Mar 04, 2015

Sport Media Pearl Awards launched at the Louvre Museum

A new milestone in the world of sport journalism was set Monday at the Louvre Museum in Paris with the launch of the Sport Media Pearl Awards, managed by the International Sports Press Association (AIPS) and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media (ADM).

Commenting on the announcement, H.E. Mohammed Ebraheem Al Mahmood, Chairman and Managing Director of Abu Dhabi Media said: “Abu Dhabi Media is pleased to host the Sport Media Pearl Awards. The partnership with AIPS comes in recognition for the important role sport journalism plays across the globe. As a leading media organisation, we see it as our duty to acknowledge and support those who deliver exceptional reporting to the public, and foster an inspirational dialogue.”

“The awards represent a new platform for the celebration and development of sport media excellence among key industry practitioners and enthusiasts across the globe,” he added.

AIPS President Gianni Merlo said: “These Awards are very important, because in a difficult moment for our profession it is necessary to return the spotlight onto the value of our work. Sport means culture and these awards will help the public recognise the social value of sport journalism. It is especially significant for our association that the awards were announced in Paris, the birthplace of AIPS the peak body representing the international sports media, founded 90 years ago at the 1924 Paris Olympic Games.

More than 300 delegates from 101 nations were attending Monday’s announcement, opened by a speech by the French Secretary of State for Sport, Mr. Thierry Braillard.

Photo/Guido De Bortoli




Mar 02, 2015

Sport Media Pearl Awards launched in Paris

PARIS – A new milestone in the world of sport journalism was set today at the Louvre Museum in Paris with the launch of the Sport Media Pearl Awards, managed by the International Sports Press Association (AIPS) and hosted by Abu Dhabi Media.
The awards represent a new platform for the celebration and development of sport media excellence among key industry practitioners and enthusiasts across the globe. The announcement, which coincided with the official opening of the 78th AIPS Congress, establishes the most significant international media accolade for achievement in sport storytelling.