Last Wednesday, LMU’s College of Business Administration hosted an exciting panel discussion on the impact of the new media sector of the entertainment industry. Featured panelists included Michael Williams, former vice president of International Finance at Warner Bros. Entertainment, Taylor Humphries, CEO/founder of Ranked Media Holdings, Hailey Sheridan ('14), an LMU alumna and sales operations manager at ZEFR and Todd Grace, re-recording mixer at Warner Bros. Entertainment and Showtime.
A majority of the discussions revolved around how newer media formats such as YouTube, Netflix and Hulu are impacting the way society is watching content. The panelists stated that since these companies are smart enough to have begun creating their own content, viewership and purchases of major films is declining — attention spans included.
To make up for our shorter attention spans, Google demanded that the advertisements appearing before YouTube videos be regulated to six seconds or shorter. Sheridan concludes that shorter advertisements have become vital, as it is more important for audiences to be “positively impacted by a six second video than for them to be negatively impacted by a 30-second one.” As a result of this decision, several brands have become flustered on how to effectively convey their product in such a short time frame, to which Sheridan quotes that they will have to “figure it out.”
The conversation later steered to how college students could go about working for start-up companies and the benefits of doing so. Humphries believes that there is a lot to be learned from an entry-level position. Sheridan agreed, stating that students can “work their way up the ladder” from starting at the bottom. The panelists also offered interview advice for students; Sheridan believes that interviewees should always leave the interviewer with something memorable or unique. She brought a multicolored pen to her interview to prove her organization skills, a quirk she revealed got her the job offer at ZEFR.
Ultimately, on the topic of old versus new media, the panelists all agreed that media is media ... regardless of the platform or audience. Students in attendance later had the opportunity to network, ask personal questions and leave resumes with the panelists. We, as the student body, thank LMU for offering such engaging opportunities to stay updated on trends of the industry.
This is the opinion of Ciara Freeman, a sophomore communication studies major from Virginia Beach, VA. Tweet comments to @LALoyolan or email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.