Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2012 about Publishing

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Saturday 10th March 2012

  • Entertain or Fail: Brands As the New Publishers

    by Allen DeBevoise and Anthony Batt

    Brands today have more consumers at their fingertips than any TV show or magazine could ever offer thanks to an abundance of multi-connected digital platforms. But entertaining those consumers on multiple platforms is a role that brands have never had to play before. The opportunities are turning brands into this generations publishers. This is the next evolution in content creation -- when brands fully take on the role of publisher and entertainer. And the brands that do this successfully will win.
    Playing the role of publisher and content creator means moving beyond old-school push-message advertising. It means creating engaging content that invites the consumer in to make the experience their own, and it means allowing the consumer to be the copywriter in some cases. It also means that brands must constantly evaluate if their content is fresh, engaging, provoking and causing a reaction in their audience. It means that brands must entertain … or fail.

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Saturday 10th March

    In Capitol View North, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

  • Rhapsody to Year 0: Music & Publishing Go Digital

    by Rob Reid

    With book sales going digital much faster than music sales did, why is the publishing industry growing, and not imploding? How threatened are publishers & labels as content creators start developing audiences directly through iTunes and Kindles? What does this mean for independent writers & musicians? And do our deranged copyright laws benefit anyone but profiteering lawyers? Rob Reid’s talk will compare the online challenges faced by publishing vs. music. Rob founded Listen.com, which created Rhapsody – the first digital music service fully licensed by every major label. Rhapsody remains one of the largest online music services, and is owned by MTV and RealNetworks. Now an author, Rob’s in the thick of another industry’s digital transformation. Rob’s book Year Zero (published by Random House this July) addresses some of these issues. In it, aliens seek to erase the ruinous fines on their vast collections of pirated American music by destroying the Earth. Parts of it are made up.

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Saturday 10th March

    In Room 12AB, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • Making Stories: Libraries & Community Publishing

    by Nate Hill, Michael Porter, Char Booth, Amy Buckland and Amy Buckland

    Good libraries are community-minded, technologically-aware, devoted to increasing access to information, and interested in preserving the local cultural heritage. Good newspapers aggregate and curate information for their readers, prioritize the local population, and are the record of a place, a time, a citizenry. Both believe they must tell stories for everyone, not just themselves.
    Libraries have experience with media production, and are already a known community resource. Supporting communication within their community falls within the library’s mandate to increase access to information. Building on the “maker” ethic, how can libraries help their communities make their own news, write their own stories, publish their own histories?

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Room 6AB, Austin Convention Center

Sunday 11th March 2012

  • Publishing Models Transforming the Book

    by Molly Barton, Brian Altounian, Swanna MacNair, Jefferson Rabb and Rachel Deahl

    By the end of 2011 it is projected that E-books will account for a quarter of frontlist book sales. Bricks and mortar stores are fighting for a fraction of the retail business. Publishers are being more selective about—and paying less money for—the books they acquire. In short, the publishing industry is changing dramatically. With change comes opportunity and everyone from legacy publishing houses to entrepreneurial individuals are creating new business models that locate talent and package content in new ways. Is the book dead? No—it’s being re-imagined and redefined by these very people.

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Sunday 11th March

    In Capitol E-H, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

    Coverage audio clip

  • Discoverability and the New World of Book PR

    by Calvin Reid, Barbara Cave Henricks, Rusty Shelton and Hollis Heimbouch

    Shelf space isn't what it used to be. A search on "leadership books" on Amazon returns more than 60,000 results. The same search on Google returns more than 130 million results. With retail bookstores increasingly giving way to digital devices, success in publishing is no longer about distribution, it's about discoverability.

    This session will detail the many changes that are taking place in the publishing industry and will explore how authors and publishers can set themselves up to succeed in this new environment. We will focus on teaching you how to leverage your platform and how to build meaningful relationships with media members ahead of a book launch.

    Increasingly journalists are taking a 'don't call us, we'll call you' approach to publicity, looking to connect directly with authors, experts, sources and great ideas via social media. So, how can you widen your net online to snag these media queries and, most importantly, impact discoverability? You'll learn how in this session.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Creekside I & II, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

    Coverage audio clip

  • Once & Future King: Can Syndication Save Content?

    by Todd Martin, Christel van der Boom, Jesse Levine and John Pettitt

    The publishing industry has always embraced new technology as a primary driver of success. Syndication was once the solution for an industry challenged by economics, technology, and globalism, allowing content to reach the widest audience at the greatest cost savings. But it hasn’t changed much in the last century. As new practices of media consumption emerge, publishers have seen their fortunes decline precipitously. While content may still be king, the distribution and consumption of that content have become increasingly problematic. Caught between outmoded business models and the disruptive dynamics of digital media, publishers now occupy an untenable position that impacts their ability to remain competitive and profitable. Can syndication once again save publishing by providing new modes of distribution, consumption, and revenue? This panel will discuss current syndication practices and explore the potential for reinvigorating an old idea for a new media world.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Capitol E-H, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

    Coverage audio clip

  • Cookbook 2.0: The Future of Recipe Content

    by Adam Salomone and Bruce Shaw

    Whither the cookbook? It’s a question that publishers, authors, agents, just about anyone in the industry is asking. Questions around content generation, monetization opportunities, and new media all have prompted great rethinking of the processes by which cookbooks come to market. But what does that mean for changing traditional models? And how do content creation methods evolve with the advent of user-generated and blog content?

    This session is meant to explore some of these issues in depth, by looking at what publishers are doing today and how that can change in the future. We’ll explore a variety of questions on the topic, breaking down the conversation around content, monetization, and new media promotion. What are some of the upcoming content monetization channels? How can publishers become more flexible in their approach to content, both in-print and online? And where do publishers, authors and other constituents fit in the conversation happening online with consumers?

    Along the way, we’ll also discuss methods by which cookbooks come to market going forward, and whether decentralized approaches to content through blogging and self-publishing are viable in the new digital world. And, we'll also look at ways in which new models can be applied outside of cookbooks to the wider content world.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Citadel, Driskill Hotel

  • Reinventing the Graphic Novel for the iPad

    by Daniel Burwen

    Nobody foresaw the dramatic impact the iPad would make on us as media consumers. However, it looks like the “giant ipod” is here to stay, and with it comes brand new never before methods and tools for story telling.

    With the ability to blend together games, comics, literature, film, and mobile services into new hybrid experiences, we are just beginning to see the vast opportunities this device has created for storytellers and audiences alike.

    In this panel, we will take a brief look at the traditional forms of games and comics as standalone, (but often associated) mediums telling stories, and explore the new ways in which they are starting to overlap in the tablet space.

    In this panel, audience members will get a guided tour of the process involved in developing Operation Ajax, showing just how vast the opportunities are when you use a realtime 3D game engine to build an interactive graphic novel from the ground up for the tablet.
    While the sky is the limit, there are certainly some obstacles to overcome. For one, the mobile space is not treated like a high value entertainment space like the living room. The average mobile experience is a 99 cents to 5 dollar experience. A high value game experience is a 50 – 70 dollar experience.

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Room 18ABCD, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

Monday 12th March 2012

  • Artists in Labs: Participatory Design at Eyebeam

    by Kaho Abe, Nova Jiang and Jon Cohrs

    Eyebeam Art & Technology Center provides a context for creative collaboration and the cross-pollination of ideas & practice. In our lab at any given time, there are up to 20 resident artists onsite at our 15,000 sq-ft facility, developing work for open dissemination through online, primarily open-source, publication. Three Eyebeam fellows will discuss their work, how they blend creative strategies & technology to build communities, share information, and create spaces for play & participation. Kaho Abe will present her work with youth and adults to demystify the black box of consumer electronics and create their own custom interfaces for games and play. Nova Jiang will present recent projects that leverage individual desire with risk & reward to create a low barrier for entry and increased participant investment. Jon Cohrs will share insights into his work combining tactical media, software and DIY interventions with location-based experiences to engage participants in meaningful dialogue about social issues.

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Monday 12th March

    In Capitol E-H, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

  • 3-2-1 Publish: Prepping the News Room for D-Day

    by Eleanor Hong, Sheigh Crabtree, Meredith Artley, Tim Ruder and Joel Abrams

    3-2-1 Publish: Fine-tuning Your CMS, Digital Staff & Social Feedback Loops for D-Day: You can’t predict an earthquake, flood, or tornado, or revolution, but you can plan for major news events – like the World Series, a royal wedding, or an upcoming presidential election. How can real-time news organizations prep their reporters, technology infrastructure, and social feedback loops for a big news event? In today’s real-time, instant-feedback news cycle, what do readers expect in event coverage? News organizations will find out how to apply new data-mining techniques and content management algorithms to “predict” what readers will want to read about, so you can cover the “big events” in a way that will drive optimum traffic and ad revenues.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday 12th March

    In Capitol A-D, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

  • Social Role-Playing: Brands and Publishers

    by Halle Hutchison, Kevin Barenblat, Sarah Smith, Justin Merickel and EB Boyd

    If the advent of social media platforms causes brands to become publishers then what do publishers become? Whether the ultimate role reversal or just a momentary identity crisis, brands and publishers know that they don’t want to be the last to the party, struggling to keep up with the current conversation and void of “Likes.” Brands and publishers alike are now storytellers -- curators -- and seek the expertise of those who understand that social media platforms are an extension of their branding and serve the same purpose -- retaining consumers, attracting new ones and encouraging a deeper relationship. Both groups seek to create and optimize content, and better yet, deliver a seamless consumer experience with consistent, integrated advertising.

    While the conversation about ROI and future of social media is just beginning, most brands and publishers are looking to experts that offer a holistic and tailored solution for capitalizing on the social marketing opportunity with Facebook and Twitter. Both groups know that quality publishing and the right dialogue are important and translate into word of mouth support that scales.

    Come spend an hour listening to a small and engaging group of international social media and digital marketing experts, a leading publisher and a renowned brand, all who have seen the light of social media and know it shines brightly when executed well.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday 12th March

    In Creekside I & II, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

  • Knitting a Long Tail in Niche Publishing

    by Shannon Okey

    Larger publishers and distributors are often unwilling to take a chance on what they consider "niche." Yet consumers want specialization and more advanced content rather than lowest common denominator material. What's a creative professional to do? Using the example of knit publishing and its evolving presence in the e-book market, as well as best practices for designers and creatives relating to publishing, we'll explore ways to increase creators' revenue and buck the established publishing system.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Monday 12th March

    In Capitol E-H, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

    Coverage audio clip

  • Sharing: A Window into the Human Psyche

    by Kurt Abrahamson and Kate Sirkin

    Like the proverbial tree falling in the forest, content might as well not exist if there's no one to acknowledge it. Every time you "Like" that cute cat video, tweet the latest controversial current event, or share an awesome deal with a friend, you validate the existence of that content. If it's shared, it matters, has value and is impactful. Luckily for content publishers – be it a media conglomerate or just that kid who wants you to share a YouTube video of him reenacting Britney's "Oops!…I Did It Again" – you're also engaging in a behavior that's hard-wired as a basic human impulse. We love to share, but we're a selective bunch.

    So how do web publishers compel us to share and what makes certain content irresistible? And how do brands tap into the immense power of sharing? We'll dive into examples of hyper-shareable content and examine how sharing provides insight into broader human behavioral patterns. Finally, we'll discuss how sharing is radically democratizing the way we think about spheres of influence. With sharing, everyone is important in the sharing economy. So instead of one person sharing with 1,000 friends, it’s more important that 1,000 people share just once. Virality doesn’t matter because everyone is an influencer.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Monday 12th March

    In Lone Star, Omni Downtown

  • Self-Publishing: A Revolution for Midlist Authors?

    by Neal Pollack, Marty Beckerman, Joni Rodgers, Carolyn Kellogg and Kathleen Meyer

    Self-publishing's moment has arrived. Authors both famous and obscure are releasing their own ebooks,cutting out the middleman, bypassing the gatekeepers of a notoriously hard-to-break-into industry, and sometimes making huge profits. But it's midlist authors, established but not bestselling, who stand to benefit the most from the self-publishing boom. This panel, comprised of already-published authors who are either trying to or intending to self-publish, will examine the benefits, pitfalls, and potential of self-publishing, and will point the way toward a new self-reliant digital future for book writers.

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Monday 12th March

    In Creekside I & II, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

  • Bringing Back the Scientific Method

    If you look back at the history of human civilization, and the last 100 years in particular, you will see a history that is, for the most part, dominated and driven by science. The scientific method and its results have transformed humanity from superstitious tribesmen to gods that can control almost every aspect of themselves and the environment. Yet, beneath the glamorous technology that science has enabled lays a system that is outdated, inefficient, and broken. From the education of future scientists to the equipment needed to carry out basic research, the process of discovery and innovation is hampered by commercialization and inefficiency. The university, once a bastion of knowledge and exploration, is now nothing more than a toll booth. First, students must spend up to $200,000 (much of it with debt that follows them through bankruptcy) for the privilege of teaching themselves from outdated textbooks that cost thousands more. They then enter the modern laboratory, funded by organizations that value the quantity of research over quality and stocked by research equipment manufacturers that gouge their clients by pricing equipment five or ten times what they are worth. Here they start their journey of pumping out research articles, for which they don’t get paid, so that companies like Wiley and Elsevier can make 40% profit margins for simple file hosting. Professorship and tenure is their only respite, the so called white light at the end of the tunnel, yet if they take that path they will be relegated to spending the rest of their lives teaching and writing grants. If instead these scientists decide to enter the corporate world, they will most likely spend their lives trying to increase the efficiency of ammonia synthesis or engine output by 3% instead of curing cancer or building the next rocket that will fly to Mars. The rapid growth of scientific research and knowledge in the last century is unsustainable under the weight of all of these problems. In order to maintain humanity’s momentum and tackle the global problems that we face now and in the next 50 years, in order to save future generations from the problems we’ve created, we need to open science up to the masses, making it more democratic and efficient. This talk is about how citizens, without involvement from the government or private industries, can help solve science’s problems.

    At 5:15pm to 5:30pm, Monday 12th March

    In Room 10AB, Austin Convention Center

Tuesday 13th March 2012

  • Branded Content: We're All Publishers Now

    by Shane Snow, Amy Vernon, Lindsey Weber, Audrey Gray, Emily Miethner and AudreyGray

    The Internet has made everyone a publisher. Even brands are now doing what used to solely be the domain of media companies: creating compelling content. Great content is being used to gain fans, inform customers and increase exposure on the Internet. This panel will discuss the principles of successful viral content - whether articles, infographics or videos and how companies can apply these to branded content. And we're talking about more than just slapping your logo on a pie chart. We'll discuss how to get started, measure results and set goals, as well as the importance of a consistent strategy. You've heard the phrase "content is king" over and over again; this panel will show how and why.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Tuesday 13th March

    In Creekside I & II, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

  • Making eBooks Smarter: Responsive Page Design

    by Peter Meyers

    Some ebooks are print edition replicas, some are overstuffed mediafests. Neither fulfill one of screen publishing’s biggest promises: adapting content to meet readers’ needs. The digital page can do much more than its “dumb” static counterpart. Possibilities range from memory-coaxing character summaries embedded “beneath” the digital canvas to continuously streamed in updates. Join author Pete Meyers (“Breaking the Page”, O’Reilly) for a lively group chat. He’ll kick off with a fast-paced tour of digital document design principles and best practices. From there he’ll help attendees compare modern readers’ most pressing needs to the kinds of just-in-time services digital books can deliver. Together we’ll swipe away the notion that digital book design is just about picking fonts or adding video. It’s about shaping content on an infinite canvas so that ebook readers become ebook lovers.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Tuesday 13th March

    In Capitol View North, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

Wednesday 14th March 2012

  • Music Publishing & Licensing Meet Up

    The future for artist revenue streams is in old standards and emerging media. New ways to earn from publishing and new platforms for licensing mean new avenues to thrive as an artist and to creatively integrate music into your media. Marketers, advertisers, and brands can network with publishers and licensing companies to discover collaborative opportunities. Artists are invited to learn how to leverage art into a career.

    At 3:00pm to 4:00pm, Wednesday 14th March

    In Exhibit Hall 3/4, Austin Convention Center