Takeaways From VidCon

Sunday, June 26, 2016 / 11:36 PM

I've always wanted to go to VidCon, and I always enjoy V3Con, so this past week was both fun and exhausting. I got the opportunity to attend VidCon as an industry attendee, though the majority of the convention tends to be focused on the fans and on creators (as it should be).

I always get a little anxious around networking events (that's a blog post for another time), and there was originally someone who had offered to be my guide around my first VidCon, but she friend-ghosted me, so I was on my own. The convention, overall, was good (interesting, in a good way!), but there were also a couple things I wasn't too sure of...

My takeaways:

1. VidCon has a diversity problem. I won't get into the specifics because I don't want to drag anyone specifically, but one thing I'll say is that "diverse" speakers shouldn't be pigeonholed into only speaking on "diverse" panels and workshops. Also, it'd be nice to see more diverse featured creators promoted on the larger stages.

2. The Expo Hall is awesome. It can get a little congested when spontaneous meet and greets happen, and when creators do events at various stages/booths, but it was cool to have so many different experiences in one place: VR and 360 camera demos, merch stalls, NBCUniversal had an American Ninja Warrior area where you could test your own skills, etc.

3. For all the talk about increased security, I never went through a single metal detector or had my bag checked. Perhaps if I had gone to the arenas or concerts, it would've been different, but to go into panels and into the Expo Hall – nothing.

4. The VidCon app was an awesome way to stay up-to-date with everything happening during the convention. It was easy to use, and updated in real time with new speakers and times/locations. It was also great to be able to program your own schedule with it, plus choose what updates/announcement notifications to receive too.

That being said, I would go back to VidCon – and I'm looking forward to going back, too...especially now that I know what to expect! I found the overall convention inspiring and motivational, and gave me a lot to think about moving forward in what we do at work, as well as my own personal creativity.

Re: V3, it was great to see so many friends and freelancers, and meet new people I've admired for awhile, and the Snapchat workshop I led was fun (hopefully the attendees thought it was fun too!). I'm still not used to speaking and presenting in front of standing room-only crowds, but the enthusiasm of the audience always makes it easier.

And now, I'm back in New York and am recovering from having lost my voice. I guess that means I should sleep...

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