Okay, not really, but you’ll find out who said that later.
Last week, Internet Week New York took over the city. Yep, there’s a week where people celebrate and talk about the internet. This guy named David-Michel Davies co-founded it and this year was their 5th anniversary. He is also the executive director of The Webby Awards that honored HelloGiggles this year!
Internet Week is a time where people get off computers and come to see people talk about their companies, their innovations, their new projects and cool ideas they think will change the world. Actually, I lied. People really don’t get off their computers. They each come equipped with one or all of these devices – smart phone, iPad, laptops, etc. I even saw one guy on his laptop watching a livestream of a panel that was going on in the room around the corner. Why wasn’t he just in there seeing it live in person? I have no idea.
I scrolled through the festival’s events and chose the ones I found most interesting. My first day I headed to the SoHo headquarters to see “Viral Television”- a panel with comedians Billy Eichner of Billy on the Street, Seth Herzog of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and Pat Cassels of CollegeHumor. They discussed people producing television content to become viral on the internet. Producing videos like “S**t Girls Say” and SNL Digital Shorts made in a format where people discover and want to be the one to share it with their friends.
Billy made a good point about Twitter being “the great equalizer” saying that a 70-yr-old grandma could have the funnier one liner vs. a professional comedian. Twitter also plays a huge role in how they communicate with their audience, find what’s funny, and making a video viral. Seth talked about Jimmy Fallon and Late Night. Before the show was even made, Jimmy said, “I want this to be an internet friendly show.” All of the skits and videos are made to be spread throughout the internet. It’s definitely one of the reasons why I love the show.
The panel ended perfectly with (yeah, you guessed it!) Seth shouting, “Internet’s over! This is the last week!”
‘Women in tech’ was a huge topic at this year’s Internet Week. Although, most of the women who were on the panels talking about it said that it shouldn’t be such a big deal. Of course there are women in tech. If you’re writing something, it shouldn’t be about whether you’re a man or woman. It should be about the content, the writing and the story you have to tell.
If you have the confidence to start your own business, then put your mind to it and do it. Haley Barna of Birchbox said, “Being confident and knowing you have a great idea and that you can build a big business, but also knowing what you don’t know and being comfortable asking questions.” Alexa Von Tobel of LearnVest.com made a good point (Btw this phrase now reminds me of this. Thanks to the New Girl guys!) Anyway, she said that women are actually really supportive of each other and if we strive for something, we should really focus on being a good person at all times.
What’s Trending with Shira Lazar celebrated their 1 year anniversary. I didn’t hear who the guests were going to be, but I figured it would be a cool panel to catch. The guests I was most excited about was Grace Helbig of Daily Grace along with fellow YouTube stars Michael Buckley of What the Buck, and Hannah Hart of My Drunk Kitchen. They talked about making their videos and what being a vlogger means. Grace said that you need to create something that people want to watch- a video with a specific point of view and voice. Shira brought up YouTube views and subscribers. Michael responded that he doesn’t care about the numbers and that it’s really just about loving what you do.
Hannah brought up the fact that Oprah, after leaving her show, should’ve went straight into the digital world instead of starting her own network- something more invested with her audience to keep them as avid followers. Grace mentioned that in the vlogger world the audience is so strong and dedicated because they feel as if they’re hanging out with you. I think she’s totally right. All of these YouTube stars gain their followers because they are super personable. People truly want to see what they’re up to and most likely want to be their friend.
I met Grace afterwards and she’s super cool as I imagined she would be. Also, she loves HelloGiggles and is a huge fan of Molls. Molls is actually one of the reasons she started a Tumblr! So awesome!
Some other memorable panel discussions included:
- David Karp, the founder of Tumblr, being asked about Beyoncé and Jay-Z using Tumblr to show off Blue Ivy. He simply said, “It’s breathtaking.” Throughout his Keynote, he was all smiles. David is genuinely proud of how awesome Tumblr is. He discussed why he started Tumblr, brands connecting with people using the platform, and The Hunger Games starting a blog for the fashion of the games called Capital Couture.
- Tyrese Gibson announcing his new YouTube show he’s producing called K-Town, which is said to be the Asian Jersey Shore.
After the panels, people just want to get loose, dance, and possibly get drunk (I mean every event has free booze, so why not!). If you are in New York next year, I recommend that you go. It’s a great way to network, meet really cool people, hear interesting discussions, and get free stuff. And who doesn’t like free stuff?
Images via Internet Week New York.