dewftDigital Entertainment World (DEW), the global event marketplace for executives focused on monetizing digital content, yesterday wrapped up its inaugural conference, which took place February 18-20, 2014, at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles. During the unique three-day event, DEW offered 100+ sessions featuring more than 350 notable speakers from leading companies that have a stake in the digital video, music, publishing and/or game industries.  The launch event, organized by IDG World Expo and Digital Media Wire, announced dates for next year’s event, which will be held in Los Angeles, February 10-12, 2015.

2014 DEW Highlights

Featured throughout the week at DEW were a number of high-profile keynote conversations.

  • David Lawenda, Head of U.S. Global Marketing Solutions, Facebook opened the event on Tuesday addressing how Facebook is working with some of the biggest brands in the entertainment industry – which he said have “superpowers on Facebook” – to help them reach and engage with new audierovences, monetize and measure content.
  • John Landgraf, CEO, FX Networks and Rick Cotton, Lead IP Protection Counselor, NBCUniversal, discussed “How Illegal Pirate Sites are Harming the Creative Community and New Strategies to Take the Profit Out of Piracy,” with Cotton sharing research showing that a high percentage of broadband is being used on pirated content (approx 25%) and Landgraf calling for companies to do a better job policing the marketplace.
  • Aaron Levie, CEO, Box, discussed how entertainment companies can use the cloud to increase productivity by creating, collaborating and sharing, as well as the importance of security when accessing critical content across multiple devices.
  • Jeremy Zimmer, CEO and Co-Founder, UTA, shared his perspective on Hollywood’s need for originality and innovation and the prospects for a new path for the entertainment industry.
  • Peter Moore, COO, Electronic Arts, who was interviewed by Michael D. Gallagher, President and CEO of the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), discussed how video games are fitting into the digital ecosystem.

Breaking news at DEW included the launch of the Global Online Video Association (GOVA), an industry-funded non-profit corporation established to advocate and support the advertising, licensing, production, distribution and overall business interests of its members – which include Big Frame, BroadbandTV, Collective Digital Studios (CDS), DECA, Discovery Digital Networks/Revision3, Fullscreen, Maker Studios, Magnet Media and MiTu Networks.  Paul Kontonis, executive director of GOVA, made the announcement during a Content Showcase presentation that also featured GOVA members from Maker Studios and MiTu.

Additionally, during the Digital Copyright Summit panel discussion, the Digital Citizens Alliance unveiled exclusive new research commissioned from Medialink that showed the profitability of ad-supported content theft sites.  During a panel moderated by the DCA, and featuring executives from Medialink, Veri-Site and DoubleVerify, the “Good Money Gone Bad” report was discussed and its implications broken down by the panelists.

DEW also featured several “View from the Top” sessions throughout the conference, each tackling a different segment of the digital entertainment ecosystem, which included such speakers as Claudia Cahill, Chief Content Officer, OMD/The Content Collective; Jim Lanzone, Chief Executive Officer, CBS Interactive; Doug Scott, President, Ogilvy Entertainment; Thomas Gewecke, Chief Digital Officer, Warner Bros. Entertainment; Courtney Holt, COO, Maker Studios; Jennifer Prince, Head of Media and Entertainment, Twitter; Anthony Bay, CEO, Rdio; Rio Caraeff, CEO, VEVO; Jordan Berliant, Partner/Head of Music Management, The Collective; and Charles Caldas, CEO, Merlin; Michela O’Connor Abrams, President, Dwell Media; Phil Wiser, CTO, Hearst; and Kevin Conroy, President, Digital and Enterprise Development, Univision Communications; Allen DeBevoise, Chairman & CEO, Machinima; Chris DeWolfe, CEO, SGN; Martin Tremblay, President, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment; and Mike Vorhaus, President, Magid Advisors. 

2014 DEW Startup Competition Winner Announced

During the 2014 DEW Startup Competition, 12 innovative startups with groundbreaking products and technologies contributing to consumer engagement, experiences and monetization of digital content went head to head as finalists vying for a prize package valued at more than $74,000.  Following its live, eight-minute presentation – hosted by Chris Petrovic, advisor/investor and former GM of GameStop Digital Ventures – each finalist answered questions from a panel of judges from top-tier VCs and investment funds showcasing the company’s creativity, innovativeness, need in the marketplace, strength of team, as well as future profitability and success.

The 2014 winner was Ninja Metrics’ Katana Social Analytics Engine – which predicts and measures the value of social contributions in applications and games.  The company will now receive a $25,000 investment from Manatt Venture Fund in the form of a convertible note, professional and business services from Los Angeles-based law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, a full year of free hosting service on Rackspace and an invitation to the San Francisco office of IDG Ventures for a two-hour consultation with senior partners of the firm.

For more information about DEW, including a complete list of speakers and the full agenda, visit