Monday Signal: Get Yer Red Hot SXSW Panels Right Here…

Voting for the 2013 South by Southwest Conference Panels has begun, and Federated Media would appreciate your support for the conversations we’d like to bring to the festival!

The Interactive Festival portion of SXSW, which fosters creative growth and acts as a tool to help inspired individuals develop their careers, discuss innovative solutions, and discover what’s next in the world of new media technology, champions our belief that people seek out and follow unique and powerful voices relatable to their own passions. In past years, we’ve brought dynamic speakers and compelling content to the festival, and with your support, next year will be no different.

The line-up we’re offering for 2013 (details below) features some our industry’s most influencial voices, and includes a discussion on transparency and authenticity in conversational marketing, theories about why there are more male developers than female, coping strategies for dealing with Internet criticism, and a discussion on the impact of blogger-related content and how and why editorial is a brand investment.

Click on the link attached to the following panel titles to cast your votes, and don’t forget to share your choices on Twitter with your followers, the folks at SXSW (@SXSW), and with us (@FMP) using the hashtags #FMPpanels #panelpicker.

Thank you for helping us share ideas and power the independent Web. We hope to see you in March!

The South by Southwest Interactive Festival
March 8–12, 2013
Austin, Texas

FMP’s Proposed Panels

Hacker Girls: Why Aren’t There More Women Coders?
A recent post, “Modest Proposal For Stopping Hackers: Get Them Girlfriends,” based on an Irish study reported in InformationWeek, had more than 500 comments within days. A few issues struck home with the audience. One, implicit in the headline, is that most hackers are male.

According to Girls Who Code, an organization that connects technology professionals with 13 to 17 year-old girls to provide them with the “skills and resources to pursue opportunities in technology and engineering,” women hold less than 14 percent of computer science degrees awarded in the U.S.

This panel would discuss why there are more male developers than female. Theories abound: education, environment and gender among them. Native gender ability as an explanation has been a controversial one. A 2010 study published in Psychological Bulletin found no real gender gap in math skills, though in some of the 69 countries included in the study, girls had the edge in some countries, boys in others.

Questions Answered

  • Are girls encouraged to pursue technical subjects academically? Are girls socially discouraged from math and engineering?
  • Should gender equality be legislated in education? Are quotas fair?
  • Is there a gender bias against hiring women programmers, or is it more an issue of there not being that many women in the industry? All else being truly equal, does gender make a difference in a hire? If yes, why?
  • For the contrarian point of view: Is this issue specific to tech and engineering?
  • What is the best way to encourage young girls and women to choose technology and engineering courses of study and careers? What is the best way to support women engineers in the workforce?

Peter Vesterbacka — Rovio Entertainment, Ltd.
Jakab Orsos — PEN American Center
Kristen Titus — Girls Who Code
Robin Hunicke — Tiny Speck

Jennifer Ha — Federated Media

Additional Supporting Materials


Dumb, Lonely & Fat: Dealing w/Internet Criticism
Never before in human history has our work been subject to the kind of worldwide criticism that it is today. Emotionally, we’re still evolving as every public thought we share is up for public discourse. Learn coping strategies and hear stories from the front line of internet criticism. Learn how to develop a thicker skin to confidently distribute your work. Join Heather Armstrong from and Helen Jane Hearn from for a conversation that will leave you with practical tips for dealing with internet criticism.

Questions Answered

  • What steps can I take after someone says something terrible about me online?
  • How do I develop a thicker skin online?
  • How do I avoid interruption of my creative work from internet criticism?
  • Even worse, what do I do when I’m ignored online?
  • How much internet criticism should I listen to? How much do I ignore?

Heather Armstrong Armstrong Media
Helen Jane Hearn Federated Media

Helen Jane Hearn — Federated Media

Additional Supporting Materials


Brands as Publishers: Defining Church and State
In the past five years, conversational marketing has become de rigeur for brands hoping to make an impact within the world of blogging and social conversation. Brands hire editorial teams to help curate the conversations already happening and to create new ones, whether on 360 publishing executions such as the American Express OPEN Forum or L’Oreal or smaller, more targeted campaigns on social platforms.

In this world where transparency is increasingly important to intelligent audiences, can brands achieve an authentic voice? Can bloggers and editors who participate maintain their reader trust while contributing to a branded conversation? Can brands truly create an atmosphere that is mutually beneficial for their goals as well as the needs of their readers?

We are bringing together independent voices, brand advocates and marketers to try to answer some of these questions and to explain how authenticity is, indeed, achievable.

Questions Answered

  • How does a brand maintain authenticity in a publishing program?
  • What is the role of a blogger in the world of content marketing?
  • Do audiences who read branded content know that it is driven by brand goals? Do they care?
  • What does success look like for a brand?
  • Do brands need traditional editorial supervision in order to achieve success?

Emily Luger — Federated Media Publishing
Sarah Passe — Creative Artists Agency
Margit Detweiler — Gyrate Media
Jordan Reid —

Emily Luger — Federated Media Publishing

Additional Supporting Materials


Big Blow-Out: Content Strategy for Beauty Brands
Major beauty brand marketers are using marketing dollars to create robust online publications. Companies like Procter & Gamble and L’Oreal, have embraced an editorially independent p.o.v. to develop content for new standalone, online sites. Sites like StyleUnited, (P&G) (L’Oreal), post daily content including articles, how-to videos and more developed by bloggers, journalists & curated by editors-in-chief.

A 2011 report from McKinsey – ‘We’re all marketers now’ – provided insight: “[Companies] have built editorial teams to “socialize” their brands: they are transforming the customer relationship by producing blogs, digital magazines, and other content that can dramatically intensify both the frequency and depth of interactions.”

From aligning the right mix of contributors to creating a social amplification program to developing shareable how-to video, this panel of experts will discuss how and why editorial is a brand investment.

Questions Answered

  • How is beauty content for brands developed and created for the site and what are the key social extensions?
  • What are the rules and pitfalls involved in creating “independent” content for brands?
  • How do you determine the right mix of voices, authors and content sources?
  • What is the impact of blogger-created content and social amplification for beauty brands?
  • Why is it – or isn’t it – important that a branded site is editorially transparent?

Margit Detweiler — Gyrate Media
Jennifer Hirshlag — Federated Media Publishing, Inc
Marie Robinson — Marie Robinson Salon
Kristin Booker — Fashion Style Beauty

Margit Detweiler — Gyrate Media

Additional Supporting Materials


A very special thanks to all of the people who’ve already cast their votes for FMP, those who’ve shared their enthusiasm on Twitter and Pinterest, and to our clients, who are doing a great job spreading the word. Here’s just a taste of what’s being shared …

Kerry Gorgone’s SXSW 2013 Panel Picks on Pinterest

Branded Content Panel:
Brands as Publishers: Defining Church and State. Vote for @FMP panel @SXSW #panelpicker to learn.

Publishers, brand managers + bloggers dissect the division of Church-State in content dev. Vote @SXSW #panelpicker

Hacker Girls Panel:
Hacker Girls: Why Aren’t There More Women Coders? Vote @SXSW #PanelPicker #SXSW @dupkaspike @FMP

What is the best way to encourage young girls to choose technology and engineering careers? Vote @SXSW #PanelPicker #SXSW @dupkaspike @FMP

Beauty Panel:
Smoky eye how-tos, nail art slideshows: beauty content is BIG and brands are capitalizing. Vote to learn more! #SXSW @FMP

Blogger impact, brand transparency & more with @FMP @MarieSalon @FasthionStBeauty @Margit  Vote @SXSW #PanelPicker

Beauty + brains? Vote @SXSW #panelpicker for beauty content strategy from @MarieSalon @FMP @Margit @FasthionStBeauty