The Moscow Times Offline kicked off its first event of 2020 last week at a new venue, the Hyatt Regency Petrovsky Park. An audience of about 40 people, both expats and Muscovites, came to hear three journalists, Evan Gershkovich (The Moscow Times), Nataliya Vasilyeva (Daily Telegraph) and Anton Troianovski (The New York Times) talk about the reporting life in Russia, moderated by Michele A. Berdy. The journalists described the ins and outs of working with foreign editors, international coverage in their publications — which ranged from three pages to cover the entire world to an entire section and a whole website — censorship, sources, access, diversity and much, much more.

Apparently, people came despite expecting the evening to be a bit dull; someone even mentioned fearful anticipation of pie charts and other horrors of powerpoint presentations. But, to the audience’s surprise and pleasure, the evening was lively, fascinating and sometimes even fun.

The one question we did not answer? Why, despite all our efforts, are first-time visitors still surprised by how modern and beautiful Moscow is?

That will be a topic for another discussion.

The Moscow Times Offline events will be held the third Tuesday of every month at the Hyatt Regency Petrovsky Park.