The New Era of News - Conversation with Ellana Lee

On a breezy Wednesday morning, we were lucky to have Ellana Lee, SVP and Managing Editor for CNN taking a detour from her daily routines and shared with us her journey in the ever-changing journalism industry. Growing up in her mother country, Ellana witnessed South Korea's democratization which stirred her realization on how impactful news can be. This unique upbringing, privileged by the tertiary education in the U.S., had set the tone for her hybrid and flexible vision. Triggered by the settings of South Korea in the 80s, nurtured by curiosity and fascination towards journalism, she finally embarked on her odyssey of truth-seeking through the lens of a journalist.

Working then in an industry with a more traditional mindset, Ellana did not shy away from sharing her stories about early obstacles as a female journalist; instead, she took every opportunity to represent CNN and herself well. As an optimist, she contended that perhaps being less understood in the beginning had opened the gateway for her to seek to impress everyone with her professionalism and preparation.

In the age of information overflow and social media, social media algorithms became one of the more interesting topics, and fellows were keen to know Elana's take. As a journalist, she believes in taking the extra steps to ensure news disseminated is truthful and accurate, and it remains an important value that she upholds dearly. Instead of being just spoon-fed by the algorithms that predominantly decide what we read and watch, Ellana also encouraged us to be proactive, and learn from different sources while keeping a discerning view on different issues.

The eventful morning gave us an overview of how a top journalist strives to seek truth and fairness while combating the unconscious bias that everyone might have in this rapidly-changing world. The hour-long chat only marks the beginning of our authentic exchange with Ellana, and we can certainly expect more with Ellana being one of our co-creation CEOs.

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