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Online Media News South Africa

Alastair Otter new IOL editor

Taking over as Independent Online (IOL) editor from Adrian Ephraim is Alastair Otter. Ephraim, who has been Mail & Guardian Online news editor since December 2011, had taken over the IOL editorship Rhys Johnstone in September 2010.
Alastair Otter, newly appointed editor of IOL
Alastair Otter, newly appointed editor of IOL

Otter (@alastairotter), who will officially start in April 2012, has had a long association with Independent Newspapers. This includes stints as chief sub of Business Report and, most recently, helping out at the Cadet School. Otter has also published and run several websites over the years, including the blog Media Hack.

Invaluable combination

Says IOL GM Quentin Wray (@qwray), "This combination of web and traditional print media experience will be invaluable as IOL continues growing its audience in a highly competitive market while, at the same time, providing the group's titles with a solid digital platform from which they can extend their brands and boost communication with their readers."

Otter, who is exceptionally pleased at the appointment, says it comes at a time when journalism is undergoing major changes and digital media is playing an increasingly important role in providing readers with quality news.

"The evolution of technology has brought with it new possibilities for telling stories and interacting with readers through video, audio and social media. I look forward to working on projects around these to improve our news coverage and provide readers with new opportunities to participate in the news process," he says.

"Foot in both the print and digital worlds"

"With a foot in both the print and digital worlds, I will also be working very closely with the editors of the many print titles in the group to explore ways to mutually expand our coverage and reach. We work at a time when we have unprecedented access to our readers and them to us through social networks. This is an opportunity we must not ignore. I believe as journalists we need to make ourselves more accessible to readers so that we are better able to tell their stories and serve them.

"As one of the largest news websites in the country, IOL is a fantastic place to be right now. It is a great base on which to build and I am looking forward to the challenge."

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