VidCon, seed-stage dilution, advertising, privacy, and building a career in design

The need-to-know takeaways from VidCon 2019

Extra Crunch media columnist Eric Peckham took part in all the craziness that has become VidCon this past week, where 75,000 influencers, YouTubers, advertisers, and more congregate in one place to see how many likes they all can generate (and I guess to discuss business strategy). This year, there were voluminous discussions about the rise of Chinese social media giant ByteDance’s TikTok as well as the future dangers and opportunities of synthetic media — deepfakes and also fictional influencers.

Eric has all the details of what was interesting from the conference in an exclusive conference wrap-up for Extra Crunch.

One of the use cases for synthetic media is the creation of “virtual influencers” — computer-generated characters whose social media accounts engage real people online and gain a large following. This remains a novelty rather than a mainstream trend, but it is on the mind of a number of people I spoke to.

Charlie Buffin co-manages (human) social media stars but is also developing virtual influencers like Cade Harper and Pippa Pei that post content with each other and with real human influencers. He explained to me that the opportunity is to own the original IP of these characters and craft storylines between them, plus for real-life influencers to create virtual representations of themselves that can engage fans in more ways.

What seed-stage dilution tells us about changing investor expectations

Scale Venture Partners operating partner Dale Chang discusses one of the major trends in seed financing: the rising dilution of early-stage rounds of capital. From there, he then investigates how those changes at the seed stage are changing expectations for Series A and B rounds.