We Went To VidCon and Met Doug The Pug

VidCon is the world’s largest event held every year to bring online video creators and viewers together. We were lucky enough to get the opportunity to experience and witness the amazing things that VidCon 2018 had to offer.

Day 1

VidCon officially kicked off on Thursday, June 21. Co-founders, John and Hank Green (the brothers who probably helped us all during our high school years of taking AP courses), greeted guests with an industry welcome, as Hank explained how online video is “both a business and a culture, and the best business that gets done is when we consider humanity.” 

The first day was filled with panels, interviews, and various activities for both creator and viewer attendees. The highly-anticipated panel was the YouTube Premium series, “Escape the Night” Season 3 panel, featuring Joey Graceffa, Rosanna Pansino, Colleen Ballinger, Nikita Dragun, Teala Dunn, Roi Fabito, Manny Mua, Matthew Patrick, and Safiya Nygaard. Graceffa and his fellow cast members talked about juicy, behind-the-scene details and celebrated the official release of the third season on Graceffa’s YouTube channel. The day ended with a “Movie Night Thursday” featuring Love, Simon, a teen comedy-drama about a closeted gay high school boy. The film is a great heart-strings pulling kind of movie that will make you want to laugh and cry. 

Day 2

On the second day of VidCon, we decided to explore the exhibition halls to see what goodies and activities were available to partake in.

The first stop was the Shreds Blast Box booth. Here, we got to taste delicious Blasted Shreds peanut butter and chocolate cereal.

As we made our way through the exhibition hall, we walked by two huge beds where attendees could lay on and rest, a booth that shot out money to anyone who came by, and many other booths like Hubert’s Lemonade, MTV Cribs, Facebook, Twix, Adobe, Canon, Lego, and Genius Kitchen, which offered ball pits and decorated rooms to take fun photos.

After the interactive festivities, we decided to check out some of the conference rooms, where the panels and workshops were held. Some panels and interviews we attended were ones of Anna Akana, the ladies of Ladylike, Jenn Im, Laura Lee, and Manny Mua. The Twitter stage held an interview with Anna Akana, a filmmaker, actress, author, and comedian, who creates helpful and inspiring YouTube videos about mental health, going to therapy, etc. She talked about why she started out with her “goodbye” catch-phrase, “Stay awesome Gotham.” Anna also gave advice to people who want to create a YouTube channel of their own. The Twitter stage also held an interview with the ladies of Ladylike, where they shared their advice and experiences with first impressions. Later in the day was the Beauty and the Business panel, featuring Jenn Im, Laura Lee, and Manny Mua. These beauty gurus talked about what it’s like to have a beauty YouTube channel, how they began their careers, and what it’s like to own a makeup/clothing line. They even revealed their opinions on which high-end brand makeup company has the lowest quality products.

Day 3

The highlight of VidCon, in our personal opinion, occurred on the third day. We got to meet the most wonderful, loving, adorable, and irresistible, Doug the Pug. The Facebook Watch booth held a Q&A and meet & greet, with Doug!! His owners, Leslie Mosier and Rob Chianelli, answered questions and took many photos with fans. During the Q&A, Doug was somewhat distracted, growling at the TV monitor as it displayed a video of him and it was the most adorable thing ever. He briefly fell asleep with his face cupped in Mosier’s hands before taking photos with fans.

The last major highlight of VidCon 2018 was announced during Hank Green’s keynote presentation. Green and VidCon were proud to announce that they are launching the “VidCon Emerging Creator Grant Program.” This program will grant $2000 to an emerging online video content creator every week from now until VidCon 2019! So if you’re a video content creator, be sure to plan on attending Vidcon next year! Follow the link here for more information about the grant program. 

VidCon is a three-day event with so many workshops, panels, interviews, performances, and activities, that we could only get through so much of it before we were tired out. Check out the video below for a recap of our VidCon 2018 experience! 

Overall, VidCon was amazing. As first-timers, we definitely did not know what to expect. Stepping into the convention center on our first day, we were overwhelmed with the many activities, free food, and photo-ops in the exhibition halls. And in the smaller conference rooms, we were educated and inspired by so many wonderful creators and viewer attendees. Everyone and everything at VidCon truly made the whole event and experience worthwhile. Thanks so much for having us! 

Diana is a fourth year undergraduate student at UCLA, studying Linguistics and Computer as her major and Cognitive Science as her minor. She is one of the graphic designers for Her Campus UCLA. 

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