Canada at the 70th AIPS Congress

By Don Goodwin

Bregenz, Austria, was the site of the 2007 AIPS Congress in late May — the 70th such gathering of representatives of sports journalist organizations from member nations. The 109 nations registered represented the largest number ever assembled for one of the annual Congresses.

Canada’s delegation was led by long-serving Sports Media Canada president George Gross of the Sun Newspapers a former Vice President of AIPS, and included Sports Media Canada First Vice President Globe and Mail Sports Editor Steve McAllister, Sports Media Canada Executive Vice President Don Goodwin and Sports Media Canada Vice President Carlos Garcia – who is also President of FEPEDA, the umbrella organization for sports journalist associations in North and South America. Carlos also serves as First Vice President of AIPS.

Veteran sportswriter Gianni Merlo of Italy, elected President of AIPS two years ago, kept the busy Congress agenda moving efficiently to ensure that all the planned business of the meeting was handled effectively.

The 70th Congress was jointly organized by the Sports Journalist Associations of Austria and Switzerland. A day of the Congress was spent in the nearby tiny country of Lichtenstein with an ineresting series of presentations organized by the Lichtenstein SJA (sports journalists association).

This year’s Congress offered significant and timely presentations for the information and inspiration of the gathering of the world’s key sports journalists. The topics discussed included ‘Peace through Sport’ presented by Prince Feisal of Jordan; “Honesty in the Fight Against Doping” presented by Austrias’s Federal Chancellor Dr. Alfred Gusenbauer; “Reporting Restrictions Faced by Sports Press” by Andrew Moger of the European Newspaper Publishers Association; papers on Newest Communications Possibilites; the 2008 UEFA Cup and the bids for the 2016 Winter Olympics from Sochi, Russia; PyongChang, Korea and Salzburg Austria.

The 2008 AIPS Congress will be held in Beijing, China next May.