Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2012 about Diversity in Austin Convention Center

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Friday 9th March 2012

  • Social Media Sharecropping: Black Tech Adoption

    by Gina Mccauley

    This panel is about the many ways in which modern internet adoption and use mirrors the development of agrarian sharecropping in the South following the Civil War- whereby African Americans provided massive amounts of labor to make other people rich, but could never move beyond basic subsistence living. According to the Pew Internet& American Life Project,as of May 2011, 25% of online African Americans now use Twitter, compared with 9% of such whites. African-American and Latino internet users are each significantly more likely than whites to be Twitter adopters. One out of ten African-American internet users now visit Twitter on a typical day—that is double the rate for Latinos and nearly four times the rate for whites. Pew research has also indicated that Blacks and Latinos are significantly more likely to use mobile devices to text message, use social networking sites, use the internet, watch and record videos, make charitable donation, use email, play games, listen to music, instant message and post multimedia content online. Yet disproportionate consumption of technology among Blacks, does not appear to be translating into wealth building and job creation in a community facing a 16.1 unemployment rate. Techcrunch founder, Michael Arrington caused a minor controversy when CNN’s Soledad O’Brien asked him about Black entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley and Arrington replied “I don’t know a single Black entrepreneur.” In 2012, the definition of Digital Divide appears to have shifted from access to technology to how communities of color leverage that technology.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Friday 9th March

    In Room 5ABC, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • Mining Diversity: Developing a Community of Color

    by Trevite Willis

    Communities of color are never a homogeneous or monolithic group. So developing an ethnically diverse community will require more than focusing on statistics such as income and education levels. Knowing where to find communities, how they engage and what platforms work best are essential in developing campaigns that can reach multiple communities. The session will discuss best practices and examples from companies & brands who have successfully developed communities.

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Friday 9th March

    In Room 5ABC, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

Saturday 10th March 2012

  • Multi y Mono: A Cultural Advertising Battle

    by Carl Settles, Sergio Alcocer, Kelli Coleman and Leslie Wingo

    With ethnic minorities now representing the largest and fastest growing segments of the consumer economy, the very definition of the general market is being challenged. Multi-cultural agency heads such as Translation’s Steve Stoute are eschewing their parent agencies (Mr. Stoute bought back a majority stake in his agency from Interpublic) in order to compete for a larger share of the marketing pie. In his book, The Tanning of America, Mr. Stoute lays out a compelling case for why he and many other multi-cultural agencies may be better suited to influence general market consumers than their largely mono-cultural counterparts.This panel explores the unprecedented opportunities for minority owned agencies and talent to move to the forefront of the advertising landscape. We’ll hear from key executives from GlobalHue, LatinWorks and Sanders\Wingo ad agencies as they lay out their visions for advertising in the 21st Century and the defining role minority media makers are playing in it.

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

    In Room 5ABC, Austin Convention Center

  • Baratunde Thurston Book Signing

    Baratunde Thurston signs his book ‘How To Be Black’ at the SXSW bookstore.

    At 5:30pm to 6:00pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Ballroom G Foyer, Austin Convention Center

Monday 12th March 2012

  • Race: Know When to Hold It and When to Fold It

    by Adria Richards, Corvida Raven, Anjuan Simmons, Scott Hanselman and Latoya Peterson

    This panel seeks to change the conversation from “What can technology conferences do about diversity?” to “What can attendees do about diversity at technology conferences?” The panel is composed of speakers who have each presented at multiple technology conferences on topics that did not focus on race or diversity but instead spoke on topics of sci-fi, electronic ownership of email and digital wills, the influence of mobile development via comic books, social media for youth and business automation lessons from Amazon. While the diversity of some major tech conferences has steadily improved over the years, geek culture - which remains overwhelmingly white and male - is still the norm. This can be daunting for people who, despite being experts in technology and new media, don’t see themselves reflected in the marketing materials or content. Panelists will share how individuals can contribute to making technology conferences more inclusive.

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

    In Room 9ABC, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip