SXSW wrap: Monday's highlights
Day: Forget the mainstream; ‘you have to have a niche'
"If you're going to make any content on the Internet, you have to have a niche," keynote speaker Felicia Day told SXSW Interactive attendees Monday. Day, a University of Texas graduate, is best known for the Web series "The Guild" and Joss Whedon's "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog." TV and movies have to cast a wide net, but that's not so with the Web, said Day, who added that there's not really a "mainstream" anymore.
Diller, Franken stand firm in defense of net neutrality
Two of South by Southwest Interactive's big-name speakers spoke out Monday on net neutrality — the principle that all sites, providers and data are treated equally online.
"We need an unambiguous rule, a law, that nobody will step between publisher and consumer," Barry Diller said to an eruption of applause during his session.
Diller is the chairman of Expedia and the chairman and senior executive of IAC, an Internet company housing businesses including Match.com, Citysearch, The Daily Beast, Vimeo, CollegeHumor, Electus and Ask.com.
At another session, Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., said he believes the elimination of net neutrality would be bad for consumers and disastrous for independent artists.
Watson chats on Facebook Live
Facebook Live, the social media site's online video channel, has become an obligatory stop for celebrities at SXSW.
Among the latest to visit: Romany Malco of "No Ordinary Family" and the cast of "Psych" ("Psych's" Dulé Hill was also part of a panel about TV and new media at SXSW Interactive).
The video chats are also attracting Texas politicians. Sen. Kirk Watson talked with host Randi Zuckerberg about topics including Austin's creativity and his use of social media.
Spurlock focusing on Texas politics
Morgan Spurlock, who screened "The Greatest Movie Ever Sold" at SXSW, is developing a show for HBO about Texas politics. The pilot has been written by Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana, who teamed up for the "Brokeback Mountain" screenplay. Spurlock says the plan is to shoot the show in Texas.
Even dentists rock at SXSW
Austin dentist Shane Matt is turning his Authentic Smiles Dental Studio into "Mouth by Mouthwest" to raise money for programs that provide dental care to Austin musicians.
His office at 211 San Antonio St. will feature The Trishas; Kevin and Dustin Welch; Alejandro Escovedo and Amy Cook; Will Sexton and Jake Owen; Carolyn Wonderland; and others from 1 to 8 p.m. today through Thursday.
Proceeds will go to HAAM, the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, and MusiCares. For a schedule, visit www.authenticsmiles.com/news.htm.