South by Southwest Interactive starts in less than two weeks, and Flip the Media is gearing up to cover the entire conference running March 8-12. We’ll have a team of six in Austin to bring you the best of the panels, presentations and parties from SXSW. We’ll have blog posts on the major points of the day, as well as daily wrap-ups, but there is going to be a ton of stuff happening, and it won’t all make the blog. We’ll be updating the Facebook page with shorter posts throughout each day, as well as Tweeting throughout the event.
The MCDM program is well-represented at SXSW this year. On the opening day of SXSWi, Ana Visneski will present a panel on crisis communications moderated by MCDM director Hanson Hosein. Flip will be live-tweeting this event to kick off our SXSW coverage, and we’ll post an in-depth preview of the panel before SXSW.
This is the second year a Flip the Media team has been at SXSW.
“It’s such a big deal in our world, subject-matter wise, that we’ve got to be there,” Hosein said. “That’s why I go, for the relationships. But to have our students go, both to fly our flag and to dial into the thought process that’s going on there is really important.”
Hosein and other MCDM faculty are also headed to SXSWedu before the main Interactive conference kicks off. This is the second year of SXSWedu, an education-focused conference under the SXSW umbrella. Hosein said he’s looking forward to the smaller SXSWedu more than Interactive’s behemoth.
“There’s got to be new ways for us to think about how to do our program,” he said. “We really value our relationships with our students, they really drive a lot of what this program’s about, so we’re looking for other people who are thinking that way, to see if there are some best practices we can bring back to not be so improvisational about how we do things.”
Although we’ll try to get updates on the best takeaways from SXSWedu, Flip’s focus this month is on Interactive.
The sheer size of SXSW Interactive and volume of ideas and content in Austin make it a must-attend for nearly everyone in tech. Last year, SXSW Interactive had nearly 25,000 paid attendees, about 5,000 more than the year before. At any given moment there are dozens of official panels, discussions and events happening – and many more unofficial ones. But that also presents challenges – even with a half-dozen people fanning out across downtown Austin, we can’t see everything.
Throughout SXSW we’ll be looking for the most interesting and relevant official panels, as well as interviewing key figures and checking out the events around the conference. But we’re still planning our coverage, and we’d also like to hear from you. What would you like to see from Flip during SXSW? Are there any University or Seattle-area people attending that we should make a special effort to see or talk to? Any buzzed platforms or products we should check out?
If you have something you’d like to see from us, or if you’re going to be in Austin for SXSW, leave a comment here or on our Facebook page. And as it happens, let us know if there’s something in our coverage you like or perhaps something we can tweak for the better. We’ll do our best to act as your eyes and ears at SXSW (even if at times those senses are dulled by a lack of sleep).