IAWTV BOARD NOMINEE STATEMENTS

 

Jason Brasier (Current Board Member)

Dear IAWTV Members,

I’m Jason Brasier, creator of the post apocalyptic western series, DrifterSeries.com; the horror mini series, Stage Fright; co-writer of Chris & Josh Season 2-episode 1; and co-producer of the 2015 IAWTV Awards. I am a proud and hard working IAWTV member. I love to collaborate, learn, and grow with my fellow creators in this great frontier that this organization is helping curate. It’s for these reasons that I am excited for the opportunity to join the IAWTV Board of Directors again.

In January I was voted to fill in for a member that had stepped down. During those months I worked tirelessly with Jonathan Robbins, Jeff Burns, IAWTV members, as well as other board members, to help bring the 2015 IAWTV Awards to life in Las Vegas. It was an honor to work with such great and talented creators in front of and behind the scenes. The creative community that is web series is such an inspiring one to work in and to be a part of. I hope to continue doing what I can to help the organization grow.

I have many ideas that I would love to incorporate into the IAWTV.

  1. I would like to help establish a stronger presence of the IAWTV in the Midwest. I film my series in and around Springfield, Missouri. Many don’t realize the amazing shows that are shot in Missouri, as well as the talent in this area. There’s not much support here for the web series community, so establishing IAWTV in the area would be a great accomplishment.

  2. I believe the IAWTV has a lot of great programs that have just been implemented. My hope is that I can help keep these programs going, help them evolve to member needs and bring forth new programs. For example, an online writing for web series course so members from around the world could participate.

  3. Conventions are a big part of entertainment, especially for web series. I would like to help establish an IAWTV presence at certain conventions such as San Diego Comic-Con, Wizard World Chicago Comic-Con or Planet Comic Con.

These are just a few things I would like to help implement. I feel it is important for the IAWTV to take creative and well calculated steps to keep at the forefront of the growing herd that is the web entertainment industry. I also feel it is necessary to put forth measures to honor and push independent projects that deserve the spotlight that are not as well known.

My desire for the IAWTV is to create an environment within and around the organization that helps guide and lead our members to make a mark and a difference in our industry. I want to be part of that movement and help steer this wonderful and fruitful organization into the bright future ahead. I will work hard to see these goals come to fruition by networking, promoting, thinking outside the box, collaborating with all board members, and listening to our members.

Thank You For Your Consideration,

~Jason Brasier

 

Jeff Burns (Current Chairman of the Board)

Hey Awesome IAWTV Members!

Looking over my candidate statement from two years ago, I see I promised to give everyone superpowers. While I wasn't able to achieve that yet, I totally would have if so many of you weren't so sheepish about being exposed to gamma radiation. C'mon it worked wonders for Bruce Banner!

What I am proud of is some of the new stuff we've been able to implement. We have discounts for IAWTV members in over fifteen festivals and other events. We have an awesome Content Creator's Corner educational video series hosted by the amazing Marx H. Pyle featuring some of the most knowledgeable web series creators. There's the fun and informative Web Series World Blog by Rebecca Norris spotlighting a different web series-related topic every month. And the IAWTV Newsletter written by Ruthi Hymes keeping everyone updated on what's going on with the organization.

What I'm most proud of is all the amazing people who have come onboard to help. In addition to the people I've mentioned above, Jason Brasier, Rose of Dolls, Amy Hoff, and Nicole Wright are fantastic people I've gotten to know and work with. In his short time as a board member, Jason has done so much for the organization it's ridiculous. He steps up to whatever needs to be done and always has a wonderfully positive attitude. Rose has been a tremendous international supporter. She's traveled from Spain to attend not only the IAWTV Awards but multiple web series festivals. She also recently started Bilbao Web Fest and one of the first things she did was reach out to IAWTV to make sure we could be involved in some way and make sure our members had discounts to the fest. Amy was one of our Awards Jurors and is one of the most supportive people in our community. Nicole volunteered to be a writer for our Awards Show, and I can say first-hand from co-hosting Super Geeked Up with her that she may be the hardest-working and most energetic person I've ever met.

I'm thrilled to see that all these people as well as Marx and Rebecca mentioned above are running for the board. They would all be fantastic additions! As would any of the candidates running this year. It really is an amazing group and you can't go wrong with whomever you choose.

I'm focusing on others in this statement rather than myself because, honestly, it's not about me. It's about the organization and the community as a whole. And I think the most important thing for us to do is bring on super-positive, talented, hard-working people who will help the organization grow. I believe one of the best things I've done as Chairman is to find and organize these kinds of people to help us implement new programs as well as put on a kick-ass Awards Show.

Of course I very much hope you will consider also voting for me as I would love to continue on the Board. I took over as Chairman in December so there are many things I still hope to accomplish:

1. Community and Meetups

The thing I've always believed in the most as a creator is community. And nowhere is that amazing sense of community more evident than in the web series space. It's something I want to continue to foster within IAWTV. One reason I created Super Geeked Up is to help get the word out about all the amazing series online right now. And I'm proud to say we've had over 100 shows and over 300 individual creators, actors, and crew as guests on our show. One way I think we can grow this sense of community within IAWTV is by having meetups outside of LA and New York. Those meetups have been super-fun and I'd love to see others get that chance to meet and network face to face. Not just across North America but internationally as well. We have some awesome international members who I know would be great at helping to implement this.

2. Mentorship Program

I'm excited to start a Mentorship Program that IAWTV member Dustin Street proposed. The idea is we'd pair new creators with veteran people in our space where the veterans would offer advice and guidance. I think Dustin has a great idea here, and it would be a wonderful way for us to welcome new people to our organization and provide another great educational resource.

3. Empowering Members

I really want us as a board to empower our members to take leadership roles by heading up committees and programs. I don't think it should just be about the board running things. I'd love to see many of you take leading roles in helping to shape our organization. Dustin suggesting and volunteering to head up the Mentorship Program is a great example of this.

Being part of the web series space is what I'm most passionate about. And I'd love to continue on the Board to work with all of you to grow our industry and community even more than we already have. I believe in bringing a positive spirit and hard work as a board member, and I can't wait to welcome other board members who feel the same way. Whomever you vote for, thank you so much for participating in the process and for being an IAWTV member. I'm so thankful you're part of this organization and proud to call you a fellow member of our amazing web series community. Thanks so much for reading!

Jeff Burns

 

Matthew Carvery

I've been involved in Web Series for the past five years on such series as Clutch, Pete Winning, The Gate, Out of Time, Super Mashed Up, Improbabillia, and a series of my own creation, Asset. During this time I've been an actor, a writer, a web programmer, a creator, and a producer and collaborated with many talented people, giving me a wide view of the struggles and challenges facing the community today. 

We've reached a point where small local groups aren't being as effective at supporting creators as they could be. Web series creators are producing quality content all over the world. The community is international, the festivals are international, we need our community organizations to be international as well. Now, more than ever, we need a group like the IAWTV to raise awareness and to provide resources and support to the community as a whole and those wishing to join it. 

As the IAWTV and it's members have been supportive of me and my work, I want to give something back, and serving on 

the Board of the IAWTV is the best way for me to do that. My background as a web programmer will allow me to help set up the infrastructure to better stay in touch, inform and connect our membership base. As a fellow creator I'll be in a position to share my knowledge and experience to others. 

I hope that the community will give me the chance to support it the way it's supported me and gives me their votes to be on the current board of directors. 

Thank you, 

Matthew Carvery

 

Simone Flanagan

I have been involved with community arts events for over 15 years and have held various production roles at numerous music and arts festivals. I was previously the General Manager of The Other Film Festival (Australia’s only disability film festival), Communications, Marketing and Sponsorship Manager of Lorne Film (where I also served on the Festival Advisory Board) and Festival Publicist for Girls On Film Festival.

I have a passion for digital media strategy with extensive knowledge and skills in the implementation of digital accessibility. I have presented digital accessibility workshops for Pozible and Melbourne Fringe as well as freelancing as a consultant with Canadian accessibility expert David Berman.

I was a judge for the Australian Teachers of Media Awards in 2014 and 2015, for the categories of Documentary – Social and Political Issues and Games/Multimedia.

Since January 2014 I have been the Marketing and Sponsorship Director of Melbourne WebFest, Australia’s only international web series festival and the largest in southern hemisphere.

During my time at Melbourne WebFest, I have secured significant funding and sponsorship for the Festival and have increased ticket sales by more than 50% year on year. I have also secured a venue partner for the Festival, the iconic Fed Square in the heart of Melbourne.

In addition to Melbourne WebFest, I am currently working as the Media and Communications Coordinator at The Big Issue, a national social enterprise that develops solutions to help disadvantaged Australians help themselves.

I am an avid consumer of digital content and am passionate about online content and supporting and promoting creators. I understand the importance of recognising diversity of genres and styles of web series, and supporting both emerging and established creators.

If successful in my nomination for the IAWTV Board, I would welcome the opportunity to become a part of an innovative association that is proactive in leading and growing the booming phenomenon of web series. I would utilise my marketing and PR expertise to encourage engagement with online content and to promote and support creators.

Australia has not previously been represented on the IAWTV Board. I have significant insights in the digital landscape in Australia and would bring a unique perspective to the Board. I would use these insights to promote web series creators across the globe and my marketing skills to strengthen the position of IAWTV as a global leader.

 

Amy Hoff

I am very invested in the web series world. I have been involved in festivals, served as a judge for the IAWTV Awards, promoted other shows and creators, and continue to work in the medium. I would like to work towards finding a viable financial option for web series, where those involved can earn money and begin to support themselves with their shows, as is true for film and television. I believe this is the most important thing to work towards for web series right now, as the independent nature of the medium is wonderful but there is still no system in place to make money, and at this point is not much more than an expensive hobby for many of us. I would like to work with creators and those involved in the web series world towards a time when these shows will be profitable. In addition, I would like to work towards funding for web series worldwide, since there are not always grants in place for people to see their ideas come to fruition.

I have enjoyed being a part of the web series community for the last few years and would like to be on the Board of Directors to be involved in the evolution of short form content for the Internet.

Thank you for considering me. 

Sincerely,

Amy Hoff

 

Rocío de las Muñecas (Rose of Dolls)

About me:

I am Rocío de las Muñecas, better known as Rose of Dolls. I am a film director, actress, writter, and lover but am also a researcher in these areas. Together with an amazing group of people, I founded the Bilbao Web Fest. I also co-directed the web series Gifted Corporation with Oliver Mend. I am an active, creative person, always with a finger in every pie, with a stressed-out-but-super-positive attitude. I feel I am here in this world to make my dreams come true, and help other people's dreams also come true.

What I think:

The web series community has been amazing with me. I have been inmersed in it for almost four years, and they have been the best time of my life. I have been so inspired by the beautiful creative minds in this group and have been really blown away with how much can be done with how little. I think this movement is global, is international, goes across borders, across nations, across religions, race, gender,... The Internet is a platform where everything exists and has a voice, and I want to help maximize that voice.

My relation to the IAWTV:

I had contact with the Academy last year, attending some of the meetings, and met a lot of interesting people. Later, I joined the Academy, and was happy with all they were doing. I was asked to and became a presenter for the Award Ceremony 2015 in Vegas. I decided my new born festival had to have some kind of discount to IAWTV members so I spoke to Jason Brasier and Jeff Burns, who were pleased to collaborate. We also came up with an interesting award chosen by the Academy, that will be given at Bilbao Web Fest, called "IAWTV presents Bilbao Web Fest PATHFINDER AWARD. And this is just the beginning of the story! After some months, Jeff asked me if I would mind being nominated for the Board of Directors. I thought about it for one second (just one), I had actually never even realized I could... "I would love to" - I answered. And I really would. I would be happy to help the Academy, and compromise to work.

What I would try to do:

As I live in Bilbao, in the north of Spain, I would work on internationalizing the Academy a little bit more. The Award of the Bilbao Web Fest and the IAWTV is the beginning of a good relationship with european web series festivals and creators. It would be great to get european creators even more involved. I speak 5 languages and could also help with some language barriers. And, all in all, I just want to help the comminity that has made me grow so much as a person and a creator. So, if you give me the opportunity, I will try as hard as I can.

-Rose of Dolls - Rocío de las Muñecas

 

Rebecca Norris

Dear IAWTV members,

Thank you so much for my nomination for the Board of Directors. My name is Rebecca Norris, and I’m a writer and independent producer, and creator of the web series SPLIT.  I’m also honored to write the web series column WRITERS ON THE WEB for Script Magazine, and the IAWTV member blog WEB SERIES WORLD.

In addition to my web series, I’ve shot over 20 digital shorts which have screened internationally at festivals including Cannes, have won numerous awards, with several being optioned for television.  I currently teach web series writing and producing at Screenwriters University and The Writers Store, and have been honored to have been invited to speak on several panels about web series, including at New Media Expo, Scriptwriters Network, and Script Anatomy in Los Angeles. 

As a producer I’m always completely hands-on, and all about getting results.  As a member of the IAWTV board, I would be the same way: hands-on…making it happen…getting results! And having fun while doing it.

Some ideas I would like to implement would include:

1)      Additional meetups and mixers where IAWTV members could get to know each other, network, and build new friendships and collaborations.  Perhaps themed ones.  Comedy web meetups, Sci-Fi web meetups…to help creators connect with others doing the same thing.

2)     IAWTV Collaborative: An online tracking board and in-person meetup where people could find other members to collaborate on projects together.  Need a producer or writer? Need to hire a grip? Looking for the best affordable sound mixers in area? Have questions about some papers you’ve been asked to sign? With the Collaborative, members could reach out to other members to help staff up their projects, get trusted referrals, and find valuable advice. 

3)     48-Hour Web Series competition – Can you shoot and edit a web series over one weekend? I first started out as a producer doing competitions like these and it was invaluable experience and a ton of fun.  It could also be a great fundraiser for the organization.

I’m truly honored by my nomination.  I’m a huge believer in the power of digital media, and a passionate advocate of writers and producers creating their own work and opportunities.   As a board member I would bring that same passion to the IAWTV and help further the unity of our organization and all of our collective career goals.

With gratitude and kindest regards,

Rebecca Norris

 

Marx Pyle

Dear IAWTV members,

I am honored to be nominated. I am the author of the book Television on the Wild Wild Web: How To Blaze Your Own Trail, have worked on five web series, am a Vancouver Film School graduate who lives in the USA, and co-host of the podcast GenreTainment.

I have been an active IAWTV member behind-the-scenes (doing web site updates & helping with the first festival spreadsheet), less behind-the-scenes (Submissions System Coordinator for the IAWTV Awards Committee), and occasionally in front of the scenes (hosting the IAWTV's Content Creator's Corner series). I have also judged 3 years for The Geekie Awards and judged for the first year of Miami Web Fest.

My goals are expanding our membership worldwide and helping to strengthen our community to help us learn from each other and grow in success.

Some of my ideas:

1. Ambassadors: One or more volunteers in each member country who will help us spread the word about the IAWTV, tell the board about concerns & needs from their area, and help run point on events in their region.

2. Convention/Festival Booth Shares: I would love to see an IAWTV booth at all major web series festivals and web series relevant conventions worldwide. A sort of co-op process where members can buy 'shares' of a booth/table. An excellent marketing tool for the IAWTV and member projects.

3. Student Discounts: To help grow our membership and usher in new generations of web series creators, I propose a special rate for current students and more outreach to film schools teaching web series courses.

4. IAWTV 'Town Hall' meetings: I want all members to feel they have a voice. I think a monthly Google Hangout (or something like it) with members participating either on screen or via social media would be a good step forward.

I think the important thing to take from all of this is that I know the challenges, pleasures, and pains that web series creators face. I wrote my book on web series because I felt lost when I began creating web series. There were so many unknowns and although indie series share similarities with indie films, there are many unique challenges. I am driven to help other creators and support our community. I hope that you will let me expand that desire by voting me in as an IAWTV board member.

Sincerely,

Marx H. Pyle

 

Lydia Schoenberger

Two years ago I ran for a board seat for the IAWTV for the first time. Back then my goal was to help the organisation grow internationally. Though, as it turns out I was wrong, and what the organisation really needs, is to grow up first. The current situation with the IAWTV is not satisfactory at all. Everything the IAWTV stood for in the beginning needs to come back. Doing an Awards shows is great, but doing little else besides that benefits the membership isn't going to cut it in the long run. We need to make this organisation to stand for something again, be an industry leader, set standards and help our membership in more ways than only getting them discounts for festival submissions.

I always have a hard time to explain the actual benefits to potential new members, because there aren't any convincing benefits.

So what are my initial ideas for change? It's all about communication and getting us in shape. First, we need minutes of our board meetings, so that new board members (and possibly the whole membership) can read about past decisions we made and why. Otherwise we will invent the wheel over and over again. Second, we need meetings open to the membership, where we can aggregate and discuss ideas with our members. Which should lead us to be a better organisation. Third, workgroups of all sorts should come back, and they should publish their findings and progress.

I know change doesn't happen over night, but we need to get started and progress from there, step by step.

Which leads me to the last and most important change of all, we need board members who are willing and able to commit a certain amount of their time to the organisation. Without working board members (and I mean all of them) we won't get anywhere. I am willing to be the person to work hard on a turn around to get things back up and running in the right direction to make the International Academy of Web Television a top level organisation again.

Lydia Schoenberger

Producer and Programmer for the Raindance Web Fest

 

Nicole Wright

Hi Everyone! My name is Nicole Wright and I want to first and foremost say how thankful I am to be nominated and I am thrilled to say that I accept this nomination! When I first heard that I was nominated I felt happy, scared, excited and terrified all at the same time! Being a member of the IAWTV has played such a tremendous part of my life and I feel like this opportunity to run for a position on the board would be such a great way for me to give back to the web series community.

Two years ago I directed and produced the first season of a web series called “Progress” that was about a steam-powered Internet and a Victorian-era hacker trying to crack the case of Jack the Ripper. Our team was so humbled when we heard we had been nominated for 2 IAWTV awards; Best Visual Effects and Best Production Design. Our entire team went to the awards show in Las Vegas; all dressed in steampunk attire, and had the best time feeling embraced and loved by such a supportive community. This was my very first web series that I had ever worked on and the first time networking with other web series creators.

Even though I’ve produced numerous short films and spec commercials, worked for a production company making documentary films and did background work and acted in shorts, features and student films, this moment, at the IAWTV awards, was really one of the first times I felt genuine love and support as a filmmaker. The few years prior to this I felt like I was in a huge ocean swimming all alone against huge waves that were constantly trying to knock me down. This night at the IAWTV awards, was where I immediately felt like I had been adopted into a huge family and felt like I was home.

After the awards show I attended the after party and met Jeff Burns (and little did I know that this chance meeting would be one of the best things that ever happened)! Jeff and I stayed in contact with each other and a few months later he asked if I would be a guest co-host on his show “Super Geeked Up” (which actually won an IAWTV award for best Supplemental Content at that year’s show) and I was like… “Heck yeah!” Although honestly, I was completely nervous because I never hosted anything before but I must have done a good job because after a couple weeks as a guest host, he asked if I would want to be a permanent host and again I was like “HECK YEAH! THIS IS THE BEST DAY EVER!” And then I did that thing at the end of Breakfast Club where the guy raised his fist in the air. True Story.

Since then, I’ve been so blessed to be part of this zany and crazy online show that supports web series creators. Every week we bring on new web series guests to promote their shows and raise awareness for the web series community and independent artists worldwide. I’m so incredibly proud to be part of “Super Geeked Up”, which has had over 300 web series guests (from actors to producers to crew members) over the last couple years!

I’ve been spending time reflecting back at my involvement in the web series community over the last two years and I’ve realized that there are definitely ways I can use my producing and leadership skills to make a positive difference in the world of web television as an IAWTV board member.

1. Brand Sponsorships

The first thing that I would like to do as a board member is develop partnerships with companies that can become sponsors to web series. There are companies out there that would love to partner with a talented team of filmmakers to utilize their product, charity, brand, etc as part of an original online web series. How I foresee this working is that the IAWTV can build relationships with these sponsors and be able to connect them with shows and creators who have a similar message.

2. Production Resource Partners

The second thing I would like to do is be able to develop a list of trusted production resource partners that can offer discounts and support to IAWTV members. My hope would be to establish these production partners (studios, equipment providers, insurance agents, etc) all over the world so no matter where you make your show, there will be a trusted partner close by.

3. More Networking Opportunities

The third thing I would really like to do is increase the amount of meetups and networking opportunities. Currently there are some that already happen, but being able to add more meetups around the world would be a great way for other content creators to meet each other and gain a support system. I know first hard that being an independent creator is tough and having the opportunity to connect with others and add supporters to your team is invaluable.

4. Production Grants

The last thing that I would hope to implement as a board member is a production grant opportunity. The hardest part of making an independent series is raising the capital. So what if the IAWTV could provide some help with that? It would be amazing if we could find a way to offer a few small production grants every year that can truly help get your amazing ideas off the ground.

I really feel that the more we support each other, the more we bring positive attention to the web series platform as a whole. Independent content is very much needed as it provides us with opportunities to connect with other cultures. Being a board member would be such an amazing opportunity to help make a positive difference in the world through web series and I would be truly honored to serve you. Thank you!