Social media has fundamentally changed the way we interact with our public at large and, even more, in our sport. What started as an innovative way to approach our target has become an essential tool for marketing, public relations and services. But as easy as social media has made it to connect with our customers and friends, it does come with some drawbacks.

There is no control on social media. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter allow anyone and everyone to share opinions which makes for interesting conversation, but it can be very dangerous. Social media must be continuously monitored to maintain a positive content.

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Rafael de Santiago
FCI President
1st International Congress for Show Judges – August 23rd, 2017

Opening address by Rafael de Santiago, FCI President

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear friends,

Welcome to the 1st International Congress for Show Judges!

I would like to thank The Ukrainian Kennel Union for offering this wonderful opportunity, which is supported by the FCI.

“It’s all about balance”

the title chosen for today’s congress is quite inspiring and I have no doubt that highly interesting exchanges will take place here between the participants and the speakers.

Today we will have the opportunity to initiate a worldwide discussion about topics regarding all the stakeholders of the global canine scene. The objective is certainly not to be prescriptive or to draw a list of solutions.

We can all be very proud of the facts and figures related to this 1st International Congress for Show Judges ever organised under the aegis of the FCI:

  • 188 judges registered
  • a large panel of international speakers
  • an international audience too: 45 countries are represented
  • an impressive programme in terms of the topics addressed and of the time dedicated to open discussion and exchange

We will leave this room with a wider perspective, there is little doubt about it!

Living in our beloved dog world is a very specific experience for us all and there are other key-aspects which are planned to be addressed later today: what about balance in communication and ethical behaviour? Within a very short period of time, communication channels have developed into very swift assistants, that is true, but sometimes they look more like mass destruction weapons than like neutral and objective tools of the communication trade! Maybe it is too high expectations, but I hope we can find balance – within our hobby – when it comes to live together, in mutual respect, in today’s hyper-connected world.

I look forward to a unique experience: I hope that, at the end of this gathering, we will be a stronger worldwide community of judges and as united as ever to defend our hobby and our dogs.

Thank you all for being here and enjoy the congress!

Rafael de Santiago
Président de la FCI