Marcia Stepanek - Professor, Multimedia and Communications, Columbia University
Marcia Stepanek is an award-winning journalist, new media strategist, professor, and author of the forthcoming book The Rise of the Digital Anti-Establishment. Her work has also appeared in the New York Times, Huffington Post, NPR, Contribute, the Stanford Social Innovation Review, and MSNBC.com, among other outlets. A former Knight Fellow at Stanford, Stepanek teaches digital media strategy and multimedia in Columbia University’s graduate nonprofit management program, and lectures internationally on the influence of the Internet on social systems.
Tom Connors - Senior Director , The Verge
Tom is primarily a conventional documentary filmmaker for The Verge. He has been working for Vox Media since starting Polygon's video team in 2012 and now is the Senior Director for The Verge.
Early in 2016 he directed a 360 interview with First Lady Michelle Obama. He looks forward to consuming and creating more and more non-fiction 360 and VR content in the future.
Jason Farkas - Vice President, Premium Content Video, CNN
Jason Farkas is vice president of Premium Content Video for CNN. He works across CNN Digital's premium vertical channels, including CNNMoney, CNN Media + Entertainment, and CNN Style.
Farkas also runs Reliable Sources with Brian Stelter, CNN's Sunday program that examines the role of the media. As executive producer of the show, Farkas has managed the expansion of the program to a multiplatform product that produces a daily e-newsletter and regular digital content for CNNMoney, including the NewTube and Headliners video series.
Additionally, Farkas spearheads CNNVR, the network's virtual-reality newsgathering and storytelling operation. He led CNN's efforts to be the first media outlet to live stream a major news event in virtual reality with the trailblazing project of capturing and streaming CNN's Republican and Democratic debates. Praised by critics for ""flipping conventional wisdom on its head"" and ""pushing the brand as technologically savvy,"" Farkas continues to experiment with VR as a journalism tool for the network.
Prior to joining CNN, Farkas ran afternoon programming on Bloomberg Television, and launched several primetime shows at CNBC.
Mehrshad Mansouri - Director of Business Development and Partnerships, Software and Services, GoPro
Mehrshad Mansouri is the Director of Business Development and Head of Immersive Partnerships at GoPro, where he’s been responsible for developing strategic partnerships and corporate development initiatives since 2013. As one of GoPro’s senior experts in spherical video and immersive content, Mehrshad is responsible for cultivating VR and mixed-reality partnerships with emerging startups, industry alliances, and technology leaders including Google, Facebook, and Microsoft. Prior to GoPro, Mehrshad held leadership and advisory positions at companies such as Sifteo, Everpix, Microsoft, and Bug Labs.
Jenna Pirog - Virtual-Reality Editor, The New York Times Magazine
Jenna Pirog is the virtual-reality editor at the New York Times Magazine. She has produced seven groundbreaking virtual-reality projects, including the Magazine's first virtual-reality film, "The Displaced," which won first prize for Innovative Storytelling from World Press Photo and the Cannes Lions Grand Prix for Entertainment, and was nominated for an Emmy in the New Approaches to Current News Coverage category. Most recently, she produced "The Fight for Falluja" in partnership with New York Times video journalist Ben C. Solomon.
Tim Pool - Founder, Subverse
Tim Pool is an award-winning journalist, technologist, and content strategist leading the pack in technology and methodology for digital media. He was a founding member of VICE News in 2014 and most recently launched Subverse, a content strategy and creative agency in the NYC area.