SXSW Loves Online Video: A Highlighted Schedule of Events in 2015

/ Mar 13, 2015

SXSW 2015 guide from VideoInk

In time for SXSW this year, we’ve combed through the schedule of panels and presentations to see what might interest you digital video enthusiasts the most. Check out our guide to the music, film, and interactive festival this year:

Netflix Shares a Decade of A/B Test Learning

  • Saturday, March 14
  • 9:30AM – 10:30AM
  • JW Marriott
  • Salon D
  • 110 E 2nd St

How did Netflix get to be the beloved video streaming product it is today? Todd Yellin, VP of production innovation at Netflix, will talk all about A/B testing to create the best possible customer experience…and how through it, the company found a better way to carry out A/B testing. It’s fair to say that Netflix is the most successful product of its kind (that kind being SVOD), so why not learn how they did it?

Reinventing the Cooking Show to a Digital Audience

  • Monday, March 16
  • 11:00AM – 12:00PM
  • Driskill Hotel
  • Driskill Ballroom
  • 604 Brazos St

Cooking shows have become a huge sub-genre of digital video. The traditional format of these shows for TV has morphed to accommodate the digital space. This panel features creators of online cooking shows as they talk about challenges of making videos to satisfy foodies on a low budget by getting funding, sponsors, and maximizing their resources. Panelists include Grant Crilly, founder and chief creative officer of ChefSteps; Kelly Cox, creator and host of PBS’s “Original Fare;” and Matt Schoch, senior editor of PBS Digital.

Content Marketing vs Don Draper: The End Of Ads

  • Friday, March 13
  • 2:00PM – 3:00PM
  • Sheraton Austin
  • Capitol Ballroom
  • 701 E 11th St

This panel explores whether traditional advertising will survive the world of digital viewing. As more brands become publishers themselves, the panel asks, “Is Don Draper obsolete?” Jamie Reilly, chief creative officer at ad agency Kastner & Partners; Linda Boff, global executive director of brand marketing at GE Corporate; Maya Kosovalic, head of media and digital communications at L’Oreal; and Stephanie Losee, managing editor at Dell, will discuss the future of digital advertising. Considering the recent release of the branded Dell film from Intel’s “Inside” series on Hulu, it might be especially interesting to hear what Losee has to contribute.

Lights, Camera, Action: MAKER LABS Live in Austin

  • Friday, March 13
  • 12:30PM – 1:30PM
  • JW Marriott
  • Salon 2
  • 110 E 2nd St

Learn all about Maker Studios and its inner workings in this panel, which features the company’s chief content officer Erin McPherson and a couple of partners from Skybound Entertainment, Robert Kirkman and David Alpert, as they preview some future programming created as part of Skybound Lab. Alpert’s been a big name in the entertainment space not only because of Emmy-winning series “The Walking Dead,” but also because of his involvement in creating VR content for Samsung’s Milk VR video platform. His perspective on digital content is bound to be worth listening to. And also, Maker Studios.

YouTube Grows Up: Community and Culture

If you’re intrigued by the way YouTube has reformed the idea of “celebrity” (especially amongst today’s young people), this is the panel for you. Whether YouTubers and other digital talent (who’ve gained popularity outside of giant Hollywood studios/TV networks) will replace the “traditional” celebrity isn’t a new question, but having an executive from Collective Digital Studio (Megan Westerby), famous YouTuber Hannah Hart’s talent manager (Sarah Weichel), a director/producer of various popular web series (Corey Lubowich), and a YouTube/entertainment writer from The Daily Dot (Rae Votta, you can sometimes find her writing on VideoInk) answer it might be worth your time…if you’ve been asking the question yourself.

Metadata for Good? Trust and Context in Online Media

Definitely worth attending, even if it may be a little dry, this discussion presented by Harlo Holmes, research fellow at The Guardian Project (which creates secure mobile apps), and Morgan Hargrave, coordinator of systems change at Witness (an organization that helps activists and citizens “use video safely, ethically, and effectively to expose human rights abuse” and fight for change) will focus on using video basically in the way described by Witness. Privacy and metadata will be the central topics.

Porn, the Quiet Pioneer of Marketing

If you want to break up the slew of PG-rated (G-rated?) panel discussions, this one will do that for you and inform you about an industry that’s always on the vanguard of new technologies and video platforms, even if no one usually wants to talk about it…

The New TV Star: How to Build an Audience Online

  • Tuesday, March 17
  • 11:00AM – 12:00PM
  • Four Seasons
  • Ballroom AB
  • 98 San Jacinto Blvd

If you’re looking to learn about how to build an audience online, learn from the experts with this panel featuring Big Frame’s senior VP of sales Max Polisar, CEO and co-founder of Pluto.TV Tom Ryan, and wildly influential “A-lister in the digital age/LGBTQ vlogger” Tyler Oakley.

Virtual Reality: Video Reinvented

This VR panel is mainly worth attending because there are demos involved. Stop just hearing about virtual reality and start experiencing it with Matt Apfel, VP of strategy and creative content at Samsung and Nancy Bennett, the chief creative officer at Two Bit Circus, a forward-thinking content company. VP of global media distribution of the NBA, Jeffrey Marsilio, will also be there, since the NBA is one of Samsung’s partners in VR content, as well as the editor of Wired, Mark McClusky, who probably knows a little something about this stuff, too.

The Dramatic Rise and Impact of Video Journalism

Video journalism—it’s not just a big deal, these days, it’s becoming the norm for younger people seeking to get their daily dose of news. Learn about the ups and downs with Ashish Patel of NowThis News, Ashley Simon of Upworthy, Kareem Ahmed of The New York Times, and Steve Oh of The Young Turks.

Mastering Short Form Video with Smart Humor

How do you best engage viewers as a brand on the web? The trick is to make short, funny videos. How do these videos come together? Find out from casting director at Sound Lounge Carrie Faverty, who’s been behind the voices-overs and stars of all kinds of branded, digital content, from animated pilots to short films and webisodes. This might appeal to anyone seeking to learn the art of quick and biting comedy.

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