Introduce myself, since they’ve never met me …since this is about connected passions, I thought I’d tell you what I’m passionate about.
I’m a big proponent of supporting women and girls in the media, entertainment and tech fields.
Always been a futurist when it comes to media and entertainment… keen eye towards children and youth with emergent technologies, though over the years my portfolio has expanded.
I am passionate about having tech wrap around my lifestyle rather than we wrap around technology.
Recruited by Henry Jenkins to come and direct one of his labs.
Share goal of CMS. I get this goal… I am a seriel entrepreneur and my first job for someone else was working with Henry at MIT, who really gave me the freedom to do what I do. I’ve never applied for a job, I’ve always done my own thing and some how I’ve ended up here.
My focus was on NML …helping to develop the social and cultural skills we all need to acquire to be part of this rich media landscape. I think of it as the new skills you all are looking for in employees today …creativity, ability to look at something differently, ask questions, collaborate, foster collective intelligence
Then HJ chose to move to USC and asked if I would join him. My biggest passion is travel and I love to get up and move, so why not
I arrived on the scene a year after Henry and was introduced to Jon who jazzed me about the business side of all of this again. He asked if we would join labs and build the innovation lab. My role is to design and oversee all aspects of lab programming, product design and mentoring students while balancing that with conducting research on things I’m interested in.
And that is what we’ve done. We’re finishing up our 4th year in existence
We are supported by sponsors.
4 types of activites
4 areas of research …
We believe the Information Economy is being replaced by a new Imagination Economy: a new global boom in which the rise of ubiquitous, natural, and affordable technology, the rise of participatory culture and the new “maker” movement, the rise of a global broadband distribution platform with 3.5 billion users, and the rise of a rapidly growing global middle class converge to reshape the media and entertainment industries – and quite possibly every other industry as well.
At the lab, we are launching the Edison Project to explore how the new creators and makers, the new metrics and measurement, the new funding and business model, and the new screens are all combining into a new ecosystem – and how media and entertainment companies can reorient themselves to flourish in this emerging Imagination Economy.
So let me give you some examples of each of these areas of interest.
TV has always been both personal and social, and has always been experienced in many different ways, but the diversity of those behaviors is accelerating. So the question now is not only how are we watching TV but also, how do we Do TV?
And here at the lab, we are exploring how story and audience participation plays out across new screens such as the oculus rift. Participants at the Think & Do this Fall were thrilled by the possibilities of 360-degree viewing experiences with technologies like the Occulus Rift could provide for horror productions, namely FX’s original series American Horror Story. The element of surprise and suspense could be experienced first-hand with such tools.
We currently have 5 google glass explorers at the lab and two different prototypes in development. The T&D participants were also fascinated by the idea of using Google Glass to offer complementary points of view to shows. Google Glass could break the restrictive borders of “watching” television through only one primary point of view, providing the opportunity to see a show through the lens of a secondary character or commentator-type character developed exclusively as a means of additional information.
But new screens are not forgetting about our physical spaces and many seek to blend man and the machine even more. In a sense the internet of things is already with us. For one thing, anyone with a smartphone has already joined the club. The average smartphone is brimming with sensors—an accelerometer, a compass, GPS, light, sound, altimeter. This enabling technology means it’s possible to buy a lightbulb from Phillips that you can control from your smartphone and change the mood of the room to relate to the television experience …be able to have the lights flicker while watching a horror show.
Smartphones, tablets, the Internet of Things and wearables like Google Glass are changing the way we engage with the world. Long gone are the days when the “computer in our pocket” was only a phone. Now, it’s our primary connection to the world, connecting us through social networks, instant messages/tweets, videos and voice. We use these devices to download television shows and sporting events. We use them to augment our reality and interact with our environment. We use them to play games to amuse ourselves, and to expand our social lives. We even use them to incite revolution.
At our recent think & do on New Funding and Business Models, three key trends were discussed that indicate the enormity of this shift: • By 2016, there will be 5 billion smartphone users worldwide… so does this open opportunities for business models such as micropayments to take hold (reference 1% @ 50 cents)
• A 2013 Upstream report shared “Emerging market consumers are increasingly accessing the Internet and social media through mobile devices.”
New network pioneers need to emerge, such as our partner EPB in Chatanooga TN to handle the increase load of people streaming and downloading media.
• And… 80% of content downloads were attributed to only 1% of content available.
Are we living in a filtered bubble and have lost opportunities for Discoverability and Serendipity? There is not one solution to solve this problem but a combination of human interaction and machine can help to solve it. This was a big discussion at the past T&D workshop.
What we need to do now more than ever with so much information is to look at curation across four vectors for User Experience / Data Points:
• Knowledge graph (what you know) ...for example, "When I create an account and set my profile, what information does the application gather or request to better know the type of content I'm interested in? How does the recommendation take what I'm interested in and offer discoverability, similar content that I wouldn't choose in a list?"
• Social graph (who you're friends with)...for example, "Can I connect with my friends through this application? Is it as easy as signing up using my FB, G+ or Twitter account? The friends that I'm connected with via this application, are they interested in similar or different things than me? How are these similarities and differences shown in the UI / UX?"
• Interest graph (what you like to do) ..."Beyond what I know, is there way for this application to create phrase net patterns and word relationships between the topics I'm searching and participating in and associate it with improving my profile, who I socialize with and places I go throughout the day (physical graph below) to recommend new interests beyond the knowledge graph?"
Physical graph (patterns from the movements of individuals and how they interact with physical systems) ...this can relate to the Interest graph question through GPS data but also, "Are there iBeacons [look Estimote] within the physical space that offers more of a push notification (rather than a pull) of information, discounts, etc with this application to create a fuller experience?"
There is not one solution to solve this problem but a combination of human interaction and machine can help to solve it. But new projects tackling this question are beginning to emerge, like Dre’s beats.
A prototype at the lab that is exploring discoverability is Athena News, which creates a new type of news-watching experience that redefines how viewers can interact with content and allows for deeply personalized levels of engagement. This Avatar Anchor will keep constant tabs on the news. She'll watch top story lists. She'll scan your Facebook and Twitter feeds to see what your friends and colleagues think you should be paying attention to. And she'll listen to you.
From any device, at any time, you can pass keywords and links to your Anchor. She'll find recent and relevant stories, and she'll drop them into your news queue. Whenever you decide to sit down, lean back and watch the news, she'll walk you through as much news as she can in whatever amount of time you have: news you want to see, news your friends want you to see and news your favorite reporters think is important you see.
Another metrics and measurement project going on in the lab is this project on Scandal that revolves around looking at what has been called the "Black Twitter" community and seeing how participation and politics emerge from and impact this group on Twitter. We're especially interested in seeing their engagement around some individuals' involvement with Twitter live-tweeting while watching Scandal. Part of that is looking at the social structure of Twitter to map out communities of users who might participate in different ways than other groups.
This image is an interest-based social network map of 103,164 Twitter users [dots] (and their 1,931,864 friend connections* [lines]), colored by clusters (by an algorithm that detects relative connections compared to others). Black Twitter is partially encapsulated by this graph, because we've seen that many of the people in that community have engaged with the show in some way. Each of these accounts tweeted about Scandal once during the premiere earlier this season. From here, we'll be diving into each group to see what kind of accounts and profiles there are and to see if there are any interesting differences in how people engage with the show (as well as look at their broader Twitter use to see how they engage with the Black Twitter community at large and politics on an everyday level).
Unlike Scandal which airs on ABC, these new studios ignored the syndication business and focused on audience behavior around 3 of the 4 vectors I mentioned, modifying their business models to give the viewer what they want, when they want it. There is no need to negotiate w cable operators or figure out a specific time slots… they focus on what is Meaningful to the audience spending more money in developing a marketing model rather than a distribution model ...A key question these new platforms ask is “how do u personalize and attract the audience?”
Not only have they thrown out conventions of traditional TV. Where in traditional TV, 6-15 pilots a year at a million a piece are developed, more than 85% fail each year. These new companies build things the right size for the right audience.
And, we are seeing success. House of Cards had 14 nominations and 3 wins at this year’s emmy’s and never aired on broadcast or syndicate. They followed this with Orange is the New Black which grows a huge following not just in the US but around the world in 41 countries. And East Lost High which is one of the top 5 Hulu original series fills a niche to latino youth that is not being served by broadcast. There also are new platforms like Viki which is a play on the words video and wiki, and is a global TV site powered by a volunteer community of avid fans. Launched in December 2010, Viki now has tens of millions of users every month watching and sharing TV shows, movies, music videos and other premium content from around the world, translated into more than 160 languages. You can see this show Tragedy of W is offered in 8 languages online.
And a 3D printer that helps to contextualize the emergence of blended story experiences between the virtual and physical world. The concept here specifically focused on the use of 3D printers to provide audiences with the opportunity to experience a show and receive a ‘token’ or some tangible printable artifact upon watching content. The physical pieces would be collector’s items reserved only for fans who actually watched the show. Fans could be further incentivized to print tokens by using webcams, Kinect or other forms of machine vision to visually recognize the printed token and unlock additional VIP-type content (i.e. sneak peeks into the next week’s episode).
Or toys can now enable a multi or two-way, long distance conversations between adults and children or peer to peer allowing for a social memory story to emerge and allow for conversations and visual connections to move beyond our mobile phones.
These projects I just shared with you in the areas of new creators and makers, new funding and business models, new measurements and metrics and new screens are all works in progress and we welcome your input and participation. They are all centered around our new multi year strategy that we refer to as The Edison Project.
Through the Edison Project, we hope to transition from an Information Economy to an Imagination Economy. This means rather than focus on an Information Economy that places technology at the center, we encourage our partners to embrace an Imagination Economy, one that recognizes the importance of Creativity and Context and thus – creates a vision for a new M&E ecosystem and working with a range of strategic partners to accelerate its arrival.