It was all set...until it wasn’t!
3 key members of the panel dropped out for work (which in VR World, always comes first) on the 2 days prior to the event.
I panicked (a little) until I reached out to my pals at the TV Academy to see who won any VR awards this year. Sure enough, Jaunt had just picked up a News and Doc statuette for a great VR film called Collisions.
I reached out to my old friend, George Kliavkoff, the chief at Jaunt, and “BAM” we got the film's Emmy Winning creative director, Patrick Meegan.
An old friend from NBC News, Joanna Popper, is a player in the digital media in L.A., and she introduced me to a bright entrepreneur, Erika Barraza, with a startup idea to create a giant repository of searchable user generated VR content to help VR filmmakers, with her new venture, EVRealities.
Jason Farkas, CNN’s VP Premium Content Video, talked about how they are leading the way in outfitting all their field people with the capability to record or feed VR whenever news breaks. He also talked about their huge effort to cover the Solar Eclipse in VR. (Found in VR Journalism App in Google Play or the App Store)
Mike Santiago, a LADUMA executive, talked about other non-scripted uses of the technology from sports to medical. We are just beginning to see the ways VR and AR and MR can be useful to our lives. (Found in VR Journalism App in Google Play or the App Store)
And representing a global VR outlook was Michael Dutton of Mesmerise, who is right at the heart of VR Journalism with relationships from Time, Inc. to USA Today. (Found in VR Journalism App in Google Play or the App Store)
(This industry is nothing...if not about relationships.)
We have moved the conversation from what we once referred to as “The New Normal,” to a forward-looking “The Next Normal.”
One cool thing for this session...we created a downloadable App “VR Journalism,” available now in The Google Play Store and soon, The Apple App Store. It houses VR content created by the panelists. We then gave branded Google Cardboards (courtesy of LADUMA) to everyone in the room, and kept referencing where they could see the stuff using our app and their new cardboard.
So the conversation was stimulating, the gifts were useful, and we made some new friends along the way.
You know the measure of a good panel when everyone stays all the way to the end, and when they leave, they take extra swag.