Dozens of content creators and hundreds of their fans were in attendance at VIDXB on Friday for the region’s first dedicated event for online video.
Among those in attendance was His Highness Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who toured the event and met with world-famous YouTube star Casey Neistat.
Other influencers at the event included online creator Lele Pons, the creator of the most viewed Instagram story of 2017. Other opening day highlights at the event – which was organised by the Dubai Film and TV Commission (DFTC) – included live cooking demonstrations from Chef Samar, an e-sports session with UK-based gamer and performer KSI, and a tutorial on beauty content creation from Noor Stars, Nuha Style, and a number of other beauty influencers.
Additionally, Google’s regional head of marketing – MENA, unveiled details of YouTube’s new partnership with Iftah Ya SimSim, the Arabic co-production of Sesame Street.
“Fifty episodes will debut as part of YouTube’s Creators for Change initiative, a project that aims to highlight social issues through YouTube channels,” he said.
Jamal Al Sharif, Chairman of DTFC, noted that “VIDXB has been months in the making, and opening the doors today to see the idea become a reality was very special.”
“There has been a real gap in the market for an event like this and the demand for all part of the programme – from fan meet and greets and creator performances, to the industry workshops and panel sessions – has been overwhelming,” he added. “We look forward to seeing the creativity continue to flow across the weekend and have no doubt that VIDXB will successfully cement its position as a catalyst for digital media production in the region.”
Off the main stage, industry professional and creators were given workshops on the tools and techniques relevant to brands, as well as those wanting to build their own presence online. Additionally, Jonathon Labin, the managing director of Facebook Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan, delivered a keynote address on how mobile technology, artificial intelligence and virtual reality will be used in the future.
Another speaker was psychiatrist Sara Rasmi, who held a session entitled “understanding your audience: how social media and stylized life impacts teens” in which she spoke of the possible misinterpretations of the realities presented on online platforms.
The event’s first day closed with a performance by British singer Conor Maynard, who performed alongside KSI.
The event - which continues on Saturday – is the first in a series of events organised by DFTC to help promote local content and facilitate online content creation in the UAE.
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