Blogs in "CMC Ebulletin"

June 2019

CMC 2019: Preview – First Timers Reception

Posted on: Thursday 20 June 2019 2:19am by Chris Jarvis

Tuesday 2nd July 2019, 17:00 - 18:00 Sheffield City Hall Come to the ‘First Timer’s Reception’ sponsored by Disney and whistle while you network.   Join me, Chris Jarvis, and 'Go Jetter' Chris Banks for a spot of ’Name that Theme Tune’ as you mingle and hobnob with the great and good of children’s meedjah. Discover the whole new world of CMC - not just the bare necessities - and meet leading executives, producers and talent from TV, film, animation and games.  Looking forward to meeting you! And the drink is free!

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CMC 2019: Preview – Focus on Ireland

Posted on: Thursday 20 June 2019 2:05am by Shannon George

Wednesday 3rd July 2019, 14:00 - 15:00 HUBS Common Room Ireland has become the go-to place for the creation and production of some truly outstanding content for audiences of all ages. Join us in the HUBS Common Room, for a panel put together by the Irish industry, to reveal what  Ireland can offer. The Irish animation industry is booming. Ireland has a lot to offer financially and creatively to those who need service work or production partners in both animation and live action. The Focus on Ireland panel features members of the Irish animation industry who are at the top of their field and have worked with networks and studios around the world. Come find out why you should be…

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CMC 2019: Preview – The Incredible Playable Lunchtime Show

Posted on: Monday 17 June 2019 1:56pm by Matt Bowen

Wednesday 3rd July 2019, 12:30 - 13:30 HUBS The Stage and Thursday 4th July 2019, 12:30 - 13:30 HUBS The Stage This year, the Children's Media Conference is offering up something different over your packed lunch. The Incredible Playable Lunchtime Show is an interactive video-game comedy show where you, the audience, take to the stage and play the game. Become human buttons, take on the Power Rangers, zap each other with barcode scanners and play Pac-Man using inflatable toys. The Incredible Playable Lunchtime Show is a hilarious CMC innovation which puts you at the centre and gives you the chance to unleash your inner kid. The Show is created by Alistair Aitcheson – a game developer creating mobile and tablet games,…

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CMC 2019: Preview – Merging Digital and Physical Experiences

Posted on: Sunday 16 June 2019 11:22pm by Tine Knudsen

Wednesday 3rd July 2019, 17:00 - 18:00 HUBS Common Room Over the years, CMC has seen a lot of exciting products that merge digital and physical experiences with the purpose of creating engaging play and education for children. And now many of these are out in the market along with large numbers of products that now integrate physical and digital play. Some wow us, while others leave us questioning the need for either the digital or physical part of the experience. My work at Funday Factory has been rooted in engaging people in the digital space, but often our inspiration comes from physical products and an interest in the tactile. Having ben involved in the development connected toys in the…

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CMC 2019: Preview – Kids with Stones in their Pockets

Posted on: Sunday 16 June 2019 11:15pm by Alison Norrington

Thursday 4 July 2019, 12:30-13:30 HUBS Common Room What do you get if you put a Creative Story Lead from Lego, a Senior Researcher in Kids' Education and VR, and a Flying Seagull together in a room with a bunch of CMC delegates? A collective knowledge about how children play that is far bigger than the sum of its parts. With a title inspired by the 2013 academic study from Pauliina Rautio at the University of Helsinki - the topic of how kids play was repeatedly raised across the research sessions on VR+Kids that storycentral conducted for the Children’s Media Foundation in 2018 and was resonant across the research roadshows in Leeds (Dubit), London (National Theatre)  and Manchester (Immotion VR). Mikkel Lee, Creative…

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May 2019

CMC 2019: Writers Assemble!

Posted on: Friday 17 May 2019 2:15pm

Hello my name is... Angela Salt and I will be your friendly guide to What’s on for writers at The CMC this year. This 2 - 4 July get ready to push back on ill-timed deadlines, throw off that slanket, emerge from your solitude, and embrace the writers’ Shangri-La of Sheffield... Regular CMC-goers may recall me as the 6’ up-rockin’ hostess of the official party in previous years; the one with all the free drinks tickets (yeah, now you know me...!) but this year I’ve been asked to step away from the dance floor and into a new role as an advocate for writers at the conference. A Writers’ Rep.   So what’s my rep? I genuinely credit The CMC for setting me…

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July 2018

CMC 2018: Report – Research 3 & 4

Posted on: Monday 09 July 2018 9:45pm by Sian Reed

This hour-long session was split into two half-hour research presentations: 'Beauty & the Beast' and 'The Kids’ Ecosystem, Under the Microscope'.   Beauty & The Beast The main focus for this session was to explore how tween and teen girls feel about the beauty industry. Although the sample of Razor Kids’ study was relatively small (76 UK-based girls aged between 8-16 were interviewed), the qualitative research meant that those girls interviewed were a real insight into how they view themselves and the media they see. These children are more clued-up than you would think. They appear to be bound by positive, unifying values and behaviours such as diversity, inclusivity, social conscience, individuality, empowerment and independence. Although they still have the…

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CMC 2018: Sticking to your Dreams

Posted on: Sunday 08 July 2018 9:23pm

Hi there!  My name's Theo Sparks.  I do animation stuff. So it all started with a doodle, a wacky little idea I had bobbing around in my brain for some time, and it was time to make it happen. Two years ago I attended the Meetup event, 'Frames’, in Camberley, held by the local animation studio, Fudge. At the time I had just finished creating the concept for a brand new style of animation - something that needed to be made, because it had yet to exist. And here it is. I premiered sticker-mation at this event, to get my idea out there and see what people thought. The response was fantastic, everyone was really impressed, particularly the good people at Fudge…

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CMC 2018: Report – Commissioner Conversations: Disney and Sony

Posted on: Friday 06 July 2018 9:46pm

The session began with a presentation by changemaker Holly Churches, a post production coordinator working on Thomas and Friends. Holly works with charity KEYPR (Kids Entertainment Professionals for Young Refugees), raising money for children’s charity UNICEF. Takeaways: The commissioners and acquisitions teams are keen to hear about great content and have open door policies The main focus is on animation but commissioners are open to live action content. Detail: Sarah Muller from Sony was the first speak at the session, discussing her new role at Sony, running their three channels – Tiny Pop, Pop and Pop Max. Sarah explained that her vision for the channels will always revolve around content, as they want to offer their audiences the absolute best.…

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CMC 2018: Report – Research 1 & 2

Posted on: Friday 06 July 2018 4:35pm by Monica Siegenthaler

Sadie Buckingham the Associate Director of Giraffe Insights, Stephen Murfet the Head of Insight at Sky within the Sky Media team and Emily Keaney the Head of Media Literacy Research at Ofcom, discuss their research on what kids watch and why. 1. Kids and the Screen: Changing the Channel Takeaway: Analysis of data around viewing habits of young viewers. Kids are navigating through the content maze, this supports the concept that “Content is King.” Now it is up to the TV provider to make navigating to this content as easy as possible. The data identified patterns in viewing behaviour during holidays, half term and term time. This data revealed if there is a true change in viewing behaviours or if…

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CMC 2018: Report – The Last Word: Toby Thompson

Posted on: Friday 06 July 2018 2:57pm by Simon Bor

The final session was opened by former changemaker, Jeremiah Emmanuel BEM (EMNL Consultancy), now a member of the advisory committee of the CMC. Takeaways: There were 239 speakers and 1100+ delegates at CMC 2018. Next year’s theme is ‘Limitless’. Toby Thompson evoked childhood wonder and made us think about 'freedom'. Detail: ‘There’s no limit to creativity,’ said Jeremiah, youngest ever CMC Advisory Committee member and a former CMC Changemaker, as he announced the theme he has chosen for next year’s conference: Limitless. Jeremiah then introduced us to Toby Thompson. Originally from Bath, Toby is based in London. He’s a 24-year-old performance poet, a Glastonbury Poetry Slam Champion who has performed not only at festivals, but at the Natural History Museum,…

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CMC 2018: Report – Building An Audience – What’s Next?

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 10:35pm

Takeaway: There is a consolidation of the average number of devices in households. Average number of smart phones means children “own” one more device than they did three years ago. Total time watching videos is up. Children are still watching linear and doing so on TV, smart phones and tablets. Video content consumed is different depending on the device on which that content is being consumed. Detail: The panel for this session comprised of Adam Woodgate from Dubit Trends, Sarah Muller VP Children and Youth at Sony Pictures Television and Simon Ragoonanan Brand and Communication at Hopster. Adam gave a compelling snapshot of audience trends backed up by compelling data and statistics.  One such revelation was that the 8-10 year…

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CMC 2018: Report – The F Word

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 10:22pm

Steve Jobs, James Dyson, Walt Disney and Marilyn Monroe all have one thing in common, they are all ‘failures’. The panel discussed how to embrace failure, welcome risk and find opportunities when it all goes wrong. Takeaway: Innovation cannot happen without failure. Reframing failure, learning from it and moving forward can lead to success. Don’t be afraid to seek support and take on board feedback. Detail: Shari Donnenfeld opened the session by joking that most people are happier saying the other F word than failure, before introducing the panellists: Cathal Gaffney, Managing Director/COO of Brown Bag Films, Biren Ghose, Country Head at Technicolor, Linda Simensky, VP of Children’s Programming at PBS and TV presenter, mind coach and author, Anna Williamson.entitled Biren…

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CMC 2018: Report – Commissioner Conversations: Branded Content

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 9:44pm by Cate Zerega

Takeaway: Do your brand homework. New IP has to fit with the brand voice to make an impact. Think more kid - qualitative child research is at the forefront of Beano Studios.  CMC Changemaker Femi Owolade-Coombes said it best: the future is inclusive and collaborative. Detail: Moderator, TV presenter Nigel Clarke, kick-started the conversation asking his panel about the opportunities for content creation. Hasbro’s Finn Arnesen seeks IP internally and externally that fits a global audience and has strong merchandise potential. The other end of the spectrum is Gina Costelloe with Lego. Lego’s content focus for the last ten years serves to amplify the Lego play system. On the digital front, Hayley Granston of Beano Studios seeks IP that matches the…

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CMC 2018: Report – Tips and Hits from Animated Women

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 3:36pm by Monica Siegenthaler

In spite of its longevity, the animation industry has only recently seen significant numbers of women entering the field behind the camera. This panel of female leaders in the industry spoke of challenges they have faced in their careers and the importance of bravery in the industry. Takeaway: While the number of women in the industry has grown (reaching 50% in certain fields), women still need to be supported - especially by other women. When in the process of recruiting it's about looking outside the box and not hiring where you are familiar. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there -“If you don’t ask, you don't get.” - (Georgina Hurcombe, LoveLove Films) Detail: The session was kicked off by…

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CMC 2018: Report – Learning – What’s Next?

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 2:00am

This session explored ways in which AR and VR is being harnessed to bring about improvements in children’s learning, what early adopters are doing and also what needs to happen to make this type of learning experience part of children’s everyday lives? Takeaway: AR and VR each have enormous potential at home and in the classroom to enhance existing experiences and be part of new types of learning experiences. Technology issues are important; it is important not to creep into a ‘have and have not’ issue where not all children in the classroom have access to rich learning experiences. AR will change the classroom at a deep level and ties in with the future of learning, including the flipped classroom…

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CMC 2018: Report – eSports – Ready to Play

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 1:44am by Tom Jordan

With a diverse audience of over 300 million, Esports is a hugely exciting, growing sector – but what exactly is it, how do you get involved and how do you use it to engage your own audiences? Takeaway:  Esports is MASSIVE, and is only going to get bigger. Esports is a platform to reach the unreachable audience: millenials. The platform can be a huge platform for good, creating communities and enhancing digital education. Detail: As someone whose main experience of watching gaming is impatiently standing around nagging my son to hurry up as he completes yet another game of Fortnite while his tea goes cold, I was intrigued to find out what the real deal is behind the massive, and…

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CMC 2018: Report – Accessibility – What’s Next?

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 1:34am by Gabrielle Smith

Changemaker and activist Heather Lacey delivered a poignant introduction to today’s session on accessibility and what it means to campaign for inclusivity within professional media industries. Through highlighting some of her own experience, Heather reinforces the key message that in ‘seeing a representation of yourself- your true self is so incredibly validating, that you matter, that you are worthy.’ Takeaway: Provision of access to impaired audiences should be considered from inception, and not as a bolt-on after production. Making content alongside creative and dynamic captioning, subtitling and audio description an interactive process with added agency given to performer. Bringing something new to the table for audiences whilst reflecting their individual needs. Detail: In today’s media landscape, there is a growing…

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CMC 2018: Report – Competing for Time

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 1:12am

Takeaway: The panel discussed challenges facing brands, emerging voice recognition technologies and the importance and influence of the younger generation and their characteristics. Detail: Emma Worrollo, founder of The Pineapple Lounge, began the session highlighting that companies do not just compete with each other, but are now competing for the time and engagement of the new generation of children. Making up approximately a quarter of the population, this is an audience who have an unprecedented amount of access to commercial experiences. Where the older generations tend to think in a more linear way, younger generations move with more fluidity between different technologies and brands. Emma briefly explained the different generational groups and how the generation hierarchy has shifted, helping to…

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CMC 2018: Report – The Art of Animation Design

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 12:59am

Takeaway: Ideas can come from unexpected sources. Stay true to yourself and don't fake it. Take opportunities that come your way. Detail: The session was opened by Changemaker Javid Rezai, who discussed LGBTQ+ representation in Children’s TV. Javid talked about how the television shows he watched as a child shaped him in a number of ways, and that he continues to see the influence of this. Javid said that more LGBT representation is not only important to those kids, but rooted in the goals of tolerance, and will speak to every child. Leigh Hodgkinson Author and illustrator Leigh Hodgkinson discussed with Kath Shackleton her journey from working on the first series of the BBC’s Charlie and Lola to being the creator…

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CMC 2018: Report – Research 5 & 6

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 12:28am by Cate Zerega

There is no really safe place where parents feel they can let their children go wild in the current voice world. The industry has not addressed parental fears of the long term impact voice technology will have on their children. Takeaway: The most successful games are built around social mechanics at their heart. Gender differences emerge in games in terms of platform. Both genders start on tablets with boys more likely to push through to consoles and girls more likely to graduate to mobiles. Detail: Alexa, Amazon’s voice technology application, gained notoriety because it beat out “mum” as a child’s first word. Anna Campbell of Sparkler presented her research on the relationship between voice technology, children (aka gen alpha users)…

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CMC 2018: Report – Technology – What’s Next?

Posted on: Thursday 05 July 2018 12:08am by Cate Zerega

Takeaway: Consumers can expect to see reliable AR hardware on the market within 2 years. Emerging technology combinations learn and adapt, allowing children forward movement in infinite directions instead of traditional linear paths. This is exciting, terrifying and full of potential. Detail: Moderator Matthew Thomas of MTM began the discussion asking the panel where they saw opportunity for engaging kids with voice assistants. Preloaded’s James Allsopp is most excited about how voice technology can be used to create access for kids with vision and cognitive impairments.  What about the tendency to outsource a child’s attention to Alexa and an Ipad? BBC’s Jon Howard placed the responsibility with the industry to create products that generate conversations within families. Lucy Gill of…

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CMC 2018: Report – Creative Keynote: Baroness Beeban Kidron OBE

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 10:44pm by Gabrielle Smith

Changemaker and award-winning performance poet Jay Hulme introduced tonight's Creative Keynote with an honest and inspirational plea for breadth of inclusivity, understanding and empathy for all. Jay’s performed poetry came from personal experiences of what it is like to grow up transgender, and how different an experience that might have been in an accepting and tolerant society. Keynote Takeaway: ·      Those in charge do not always have your best interests in mind ·      In order to create the stories that are needed, our greatest role is to step aside for others ·      It is not how you use a camera, but what you use it for Detail: Baroness Beeban Kidron OBE is the Founder and Chair of 5Rights…

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CMC 2018: Report – eSports Tournament

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 6:24pm

Takeaway: eSports are growing in popularity, with fans across all demographics. They allow children to engage and learn through play. This kind of gaming promotes analytical thinking amongst players and improves reasoning skills. Detail: Although both online and offline competitions have been an in-home staple since the domestication of gaming technology, competitions on a professional level did not become commonplace until the late 2000s. Recently, the popularity and spectatorship of eSports has continued on an upward climb with fans across all demographics converging to watch their favourite players compete. eSports ‘shoutcasters’ — an industry term for presenters — Ketchup (Ryan Neal) and Mustard (Jake Neal) hosted a casual, improv introduction to eSports during which delegates and volunteers alike were able…

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CMC 2018: Report – Is The Internet Really Broken?

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 4:36pm by Joseph Channon

Can publishers, creators, parents and governments trust computers and algorithms to make intelligent decisions about what is shown to children online? Takeaway: Big platforms (especially Google) are placing an increased importance on algorithms both to model their users for advertising and to control what content is provided to them. However, without proper moderation you cannot always be sure that what these algorithms provide will be entirely appropriate (especially for children). Parents and children need to be taught better media literacy skills so that they have the tools to safely navigate online providers. However, it is too easy and dismissive to place the entire burden on parents. Content creators for online platforms such as YouTube do not face the same strict…

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CMC 2018: Report – Behind the Screens at YouTube Kids

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 4:01pm

Before the session we heard from changemaker, 19 year old Zoë Daniel - a Guardian and Reuters Journalist who is also a freelance filmmaker and broadcaster. Zoë’s story of how she has built a career in the media was inspirational and shows how given the right opportunities, talent will shine. The challenge is how to encourage individuals of all backgrounds to be part of the media both in front and behind the camera.  Takeaway: YouTube App now has over 70 billion views and 11 million active weekly users. The App is in 37 countries and 8 languages. Parental controls are increasingly granular and now offer the ability to select/block specific programmes. Detail: Franceso Miceli pulled back the curtain on the…

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CMC 2018: Report – Commissioner Conversations – BBC

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 3:48pm

This session invited key speakers from the BBC to reveal their strategy for the future and how the CMC audience can engage with them through pitching, development and production of content across all platforms. Takeaway: • The ‘Fewer, Bigger, Better’ strategy will provide focus for priority brands, but not at the expense of new content across all genres and platforms. • There are opportunities to pitch for new content for 13-16 year olds which will sit on BBC iPlayer. • Across CBeebies and CBBC there are opportunities to pitch for drama, as well as games and short form content for apps. • Animation is still key across both channels and there is an open door policy for pitches. Detail: Tim…

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CMC 2018: Report – Disruption – What’s Next?

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 2:55pm by Sian Reed

As the landscape of Children's TV changes, what is next for the companies involved? Takeaway: • Diversifying platforms still need great content and engagement. • Most viewing is still done via traditional TV but binge-watching tends to be on-demand. • Knowing your audience and researching thoroughly is the key to making content that lasts. Detail: Jon Watts, MTM and host, jumped right in by asking the panellists to discuss changes to the UK market in recent years. All three panellists agreed that the resulting factor has been the way in which we consume content. Alison Bakunowich, SVP general manager at Nickelodeon, thought that there had been three main changes: a creative generation, portable devices and on-demand services. “We’re in the…

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CMC 2018: Report – Opening Keynote

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 4:17am

Acclaimed children’s poet, broadcaster, columnist and former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen took to the Crucible stage for the opening keynote, to ask how children’s media can encourage creative and inquisitive thinking and safeguard children in the digital world. Takeaway: Rosen expressed concerns that the education system teaches children only how to pass tests and minimises children’s ability to ask questions of the world around them. He discussed how the digital media world is largely unregulated and can be a dangerous place for children. He suggested that the children’s media industry needs to work together to find solutions and create safe spaces for children online. Detail: Rio-Leanna, winner of CBBC’s ‘Got What It Takes’ and one of the 12 changemakers at…

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CMC 2018: Report – First Timers’ Reception

Posted on: Wednesday 04 July 2018 2:42am

As sunshine poured through the windows of the Crucible Theatre, this year’s newcomers mingled over drinks, excitedly awaiting advice from seasoned CMC veterans on how to successfully navigate their first Children’s Media Conference—and perhaps something arguably more enticing: the opportunity to win one of four goody bags provided by Disney. Below are panel’s five top tips and insights into how to squeeze the best experience out of your short time at this year’s conference: Rick Adams: “Mix, meet and learn from each other’s presences, experiences, smells, whatever”. Christian Hughes: “Take every opportunity you can. Go out there and do it”. Sharna Jackson: “Go to a session you wouldn’t normally and go to the Mercure Hotel at the end of the…

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