Director of independent Greek paper Efimerida ton Syntakton expresses street paper solidarity

The director of Greece’s top independent newspaper Efimerida ton Syntakton [The Journalists’ Paper] has expressed his desire to share ideas with the international street paper network this June.

Veteran Greek journalist Nicholas Voulelis was today announced as a keynote speaker at INSP’s Global Street Paper Summit 2016.

“I believe that it will be a very interesting experience,” he said. “I greatly appreciate the opportunity to exchange ideas, views and experiences.”

Nicholas Voulelis (in brown coat) Photo: Eurokinissi/Tatiana Bolari

Voulelis is the first of three main speakers to be announced for #INSP2016, and will share the unique story of his newspaper with delegates.

Efimerida ton Syntakton started in 2012 – around the same time as Greek street paper Shedia. It came from the ashes of respected left-wing paper Eleftherotypia, which was one of the early victims of Greece’s economic crisis.

Efimerida ton Syntakton employs 150 journalists, many of whom lost their jobs after Eleftherotypia and other Greek papers went bankrupt.

Now one of the most popular papers in Greece, Efimerida ton Syntakton is owned by a cooperative of journalists and has become a go-to source for ethical and reliable news.

“We believe that this is a special and unique endeavour, a truly new newspaper that was born amid the crisis and, just as importantly, strives to contribute to overcoming it,” Voulelis explained.

Voulelis said that he could see parallels between the work of his publication and the street paper movement. Like street papers, he said Efimerida ton Syntakton stands in solidarity with people living in poverty.

“I believe that our newspaper’s independence and its cooperative nature bring it, objectively, closer to the problems faced by citizens, simple people, and primarily, by poor socio-economic groups, as well as segments of the population hurt more by the crisis,” he added.

INSP Chief Executive Maree Aldam said that Voulelis’ was an excellent addition to this year’s jam-packed summit programme.

“I believe that our delegates will be very interested to hear about Efimerida ton Syntakton’s story, and how they have managed to start a successful print media title in the teeth of a crisis,” she said.

“Like many of our street paper members, they have found an alternative model that allows them to maintain independence and have an important social impact. I look forward to hearing the discussion between Nicholas Voulelis and our international network of independent media titles.”

INSP will be announcing further speakers and information about year’s summit in the coming days. Watch this space for more details.