The Interactive Media Peer Group is the fastest growing peer group in the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (ATAS), which is no surprise to those of us in the business of interactive. There are 450 active members of the Interactive Media Peer Group, and I am proud to say I am one of them.
This year I was privileged to be a part of the “Blue Ribbon Panel” that selected the 2011 Primetime Emmy® winner for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media. I brought Crowd Factory CEO Sanjay Dholakia along to be my +1 for the experience.
The event was hosted at ATAS in North Hollywood on Thursday August 25th, and MC’d by Rhett & Link, hosts of IFC’s “Commercial Kings” . The theme of this year’s event was “New Orleans,” and you would have thought the party planners had paid off Mother Nature to cooperate with the theme, because the thermometer topped 103 degrees that day. Sanjay and I arrived at the venue at 4pm and had a chance to do a little mingling with the rest of the attendees before heading into the auditorium to score this year’s top five contenders for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media. This year’s nominees:
- ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy Sync; ABC.com, Nielsen, Gravity Mobile, Shondaland
- Conan O’Brien Presents: Team Coco; TBS.com: Team Coco Digital
- Fringe: Division; Fox.com: Warner Bros. Television, Bad Robot Productions
- Late Night With Jimmy Fallon; NBC.com: Gavin Purcell, Producer; Sara Schaefer, Producer; Jimmy Fallon, Producer; Robert Angelo, Producer
- Oscar Digital Experience; ABC.com: Disney ABC Television Group; Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Each team presented a narrated video showcasing their entry, and then Rhett & Link asked some hard-hitting questions like, “Does that high-pitched sync technology freak out all of the dogs in the neighborhood?”
When the presentations were over, those of us on the voting panel scored each entry in each of these five categories:
- Creative Achievement
- User Experience
- Visual Design
- Enhancing the Story
- Advancing Interactive Media
And yes, there really were people from Ernst & Young in the back of the room with brief cases collecting our ballots when we finished scoring.
Once the business portion of the evening was out of the way we were all invited to toast the nominees with a signature “Digitini” cocktail created by sponsor Grey Goose Vodka just for the occasion. I don’t know what was in it, but it was a cool and refreshing respite from the heat of the day. We then made our way through the crowd congratulating the nominees, and exchanging business cards as we went. Sanjay had to run to catch a plane back to San Francisco, but I stayed to enjoy the Cajun food and catch up with my ATAS buddies.
And who ended up winning the Emmy? The Creative Arts Emmys were held on September 10, 2011, in Hollywood and the Primetime Emmy® for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media was awarded to the Oscar Digital Experience.
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