Now that the battle for high-resolution HD displays, including 3D, is well underway, the next front on the war for viewership lies in Smart TV. Once viewed as a gimmick for high-end large-scale displays, Smart TV is now a canvas for producers to deliver shows and apps to a new generation of Internet-enabled displays. Displaysearch predicts that 50% of all television sets above 50 inches will be some form of Smart TV by 2014. And the landscape is not just confined to traditional TV manufacturers, but includes the likes of Apple and Google, among others. With smartphones and tablets providing greater opportunities for producers, apps produced on one device will be ported to a new generation of Smart TVs, and vice versa, transforming how producers conceive of television for an audience that still wants big-screen experiences, even if the television needs to behave like multiple screens simultaneously.
Rachelle Zoffer, Director, Content Strategy & Acquisition, Interactive TV at Verizon
Rachelle Zoffer is the director, content strategy & acquisition for interactive TV at Verizon, where she negotiates interactive TV deals with traditional content partners as well as with top internet brands that enhance the programming and personalize the FiOS TV experience. She was previously vice president of business development at Softel-USA, where she led new business development and public relations efforts for newly created interactive TV division of broadcast technology company. Prior to that, she was the vice president of business development for Shadow TV, where she negotiated online content license agreements with CNBC, NBC and CNN. She was a new media manager at Disney Corp., where she developed new media advertising strategy for interactive television (iTV), wireless and broadband Internet initiatives.
Felicia Wong, Director, Interactive Television, Showtime Networks
Felicia Wong is a leading producer and developer of interactive TV experiences. She was a 2010 Primetime EMMY Award recipient for Outstanding Achievement for Technical and Engineering Development - Showtime Sports Interactive (EBIF). Her work at Showtime Networks includes groundbreaking apps development, working with technology and content partners to deliver new forms of entertainment. She was previously a senior producer and director for Comcast Spotlight HQ, and has held visual effects and video production positions at AOL and CBS, among others. She is a delegate to the national board of the Producers Guild of America New Media Council.
Vamsi Sistla, co-founder, Telvetto
Vamsi Sistla is the founder of Telvetto, a stealth start-up that is building the next Smart TV curation experience. He was formerly director of the mobile/social media platform product group at Rovi and previously held mobile content management roles at Macrovision and TVGuide. He has been a pioneer in the interactive TV space, having developed new platforms for Ignite, creating AOLTV experiences for ‘Price is Right;’ ‘Wheel of Fortune,’ and ‘Jeopardy,’ while at Mixed Signals, and building the first real-time social TV experience for ‘Survivor,’ while with Steeplechase Media and Television.com.
Timo Korpela, general manager, MultiTouch Americas
Timo Korpela is responsible for managing MultiTouch Ltd.’s operations in North America. He directs overall sales and marketing strategies for MultiTouch’s growing presence in the digital signage and large multitouch screen markets. Prior to joining MultiTouch, Timo was CEO of Gearshift Group, a Helsinki-based incubator for emerging technology and new media ventures. Prior to the Gearshift Group, Timo was president of Driwe, Inc., a location-based services firm. Timo began his career with the telecom carrier Sonera, where he held various titles, including head of product development, and vice president of business development and president of the company’s U.S. operations.
MODERATOR: Chris Pfaff, President, Chris Pfaff Tech/Media LLC; vice chairman, PGA New Media Council
A board delegate of the PGA New Media Council since 2006, and a PGA NMC member since 2004, Chris Pfaff leads a consultancy – Chris Pfaff Tech/Media LLC – that represents some of the leading service providers, audio/video technology firms, networking vendors, and media companies in the world, from PRIMEDIA and Eastman Kodak to Cantor Telecom. A veteran of the venture world, Chris helped launch more than 20 ventures from the Lucent New Ventures Group, including iBiquity Digital; Flarion; Lucent Digital Video, and GeoVideo Networks, among others. In addition, he has helped launch AT&T’s Internet strategy; the Viacom New Media division of Viacom, Inc.; Sony Electronics’ Digital Betacam format, and Sharp Electronics’ LCD product division.
Refreshments will be served. Members are strongly encouraged to bring qualified prospective members as their guests.
Special thanks to Terra Fossil for providing premium wines for PGA East events.
When & Where
Producers Guild of America
The Producers Guild of America’s New Media Council was formed in 2002 in order to recognize, represent, and protect the interests of producers working outside the “traditional” formats of Television and Film to include Broadband, Mobile, Games (console and online), Digital Animation, Digital Visual Effects, Interactive/Enhanced Television, DVD/Blu-ray, Special Venues, and Transmedia.
To find out more about the Producers Guild of America, please contact us.