504 E Locust St
Des Moines, California 50309

BAVC Innovation Salon series

Celebrate 30+ years of innovation, art and community!

Innovation Salon V: The Gaming (R)Evolution: Creating Social Change Through Games

New media and alternate reality games are engaging new and more diverse audiences than ever before. In fact, games developed with a social change and/or education agenda are starting to explode into diverse social, educational and business environments.

What if games that encouraged people to take action and/or solve real-world problems were developed in tandem with independent artists, non-profit organizations, advocacy groups and government agencies? When nearly 1 in 5 for-profit games fail, how can independent producers successfully create fun and meaningful play that successfully meets more than one bottom line.

Featuring panelists (see complete bios below): Cathy Fischer (ITVS Interactive), Alice Petty (Stanford), Susana Ruiz (Take Action Games), Richard Tate (HopeLab), and moderated by Tony Walsh (Phantom Compass).

7:00 pm - 8:15 pm
Moderated panel

6:15 pm - 6:45 pm
Pre-reception drinks & appetizers for BAVC members.
Not a member? Visit http://www.bavc.org/meet/membership/ to join

Where: Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (Screening Room),
701 Mission St @ 3rd in San Francisco, CA 94103-3138

Admission is free! Please RSVP at: https://bavc.wufoo.com/forms/bavc-innovation-salon-v/


Cathy Fischer
Senior Producer and Content Strategist
ITVS Interactive

A UC Berkeley grad, Cathy Fischer began her career as a publicity intern for maverick film director Robert Altman. She later worked for the Primetime Emmy Awards and on Academy Award campaigns for feature films, documentaries and shorts. At HBO, Cathy oversaw national campaigns for the HBO Undercover documentary series, Comic Relief, The Josephine Baker Story and others. After serving as director of PR and marketing at the San Francisco International Film Festival, she joined the Independent Television Service (ITVS) and launched ITVS Interactive.

Cathy is senior producer and content strategist for ITVS.org and the PBS series Independent Lens, its Inside Indies online magazine, the Independent Lens Online Shorts Festival and ITVS’s Electric Shadows Web-original projects. Since its inception in 2002, the Electric Shadows initiative has funded six online projects: non-linear online documentaries and social issue games created by independent media makers. Electric Shadows sites explore the arts, culture and society through innovative forms and meet the ITVS mission of taking creative risks and advancing civic participation. Titles include: Face to Face, Beyond the Fire, Circle of Stories and Off the Map. Two recent Electric Shadows projects were the innovative games Fatworld, an online video game about obesity in the U.S., and World Without Oil, the alternate reality game that harnessed the collective intelligence of the Internet to imagine and cope with a global oil shock. Electric Shadow projects have garnered a People’s Choice Webby Award, four SXSW Web Awards, Time.com’s “50 Coolest Websites,” among others. Cathy is passionate about uncommon voices, independent thinking and challenging the status quo.

AliceAlice Petty
Post-Doctoral Fellow, Stanford University
Cosultant, Federation of American Scientists’ Discover Babylon Project

Awarded her Ph.D. from the department of Near Eastern Studies at the Johns Hopkins University, Alice Petty is an archaeologist whose area of specialization is the language, literature, history and material culture of ancient Iraq.

Dr. Petty is a subject matter expert and consultant for the Federation of American Scientists’ Discover Babylon project, an inter-institutional collaboration to create an educational video game for middle-school kids about the origins of writing and literacy in Mesopotamia. The first phase of Discover Babylon was a short game vignette designed for play on a kiosk in the Near Eastern art gallery at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, MD. The second phase, completed in 2005, was a full-length prototype designed for play on a home PC. She continues to be involved in this ongoing project, which is now developing a collaboratively authored gamescape within the virtual world of Second Life.

Alice Petty is currently a post-doctoral fellow in the Humanities at Stanford University and her current scholarly interests include the ways in which virtual reconstructions are comparable to conceptual (re)constructions and interpretations of the past. She is also fascinated by the use of Assyrian and Babylonian imagery on Iraqi currency, postage stamps and public art.

Susana Ruiz
Lead Developer, Darfur is Dying
Co-founder, Take Action Games

Susana is a film and media artist whose research interests include the intersections between art, journalism, game design and cinema. Susana developed “Darfur Is Dying,” a game for social change, which garnered critical acclaim from experts and journalists and won numerous awards, including the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences’ prestigious Governors Award. The game was said to be “one of the best presentations of life in Darfur by Pulitzer Prize winner New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. Her most recently completed project, “RePlay: Finding Zoe” is an online game addressing gender stereotyping and has won the
Ashoka Changemakers global competition Why Games Matter: A Prescription for Improving Health and Health Care. Susana was a semifinalist for the 2008 Echoing Green Fellowship, which provides funding and support to social entrepreneurs with bold ideas for social change. Social issue-driven games, gameplay metaphors, activist digital art, user-centric design and future cinema are Susana’s principal interests – and while it is an exciting time with much room for advancement and
manifold processes, Susana’s commitment lies specifically in the emotional and participatory potential of interactive design. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art as well as a Master of
Fine Arts from the University of Southern California's Interactive Media Division in the School of Cinematic Arts, where she will also be conducting her dissertation studies.

RichardRichard Tate
Director, Communications and Marketing

Richard is responsible for HopeLab’s public relations and product marketing activities. His focus is ensuring that HopeLab’s work, mission, and values are effectively communicated to key audiences through media coverage, web communications, direct-outreach projects, and public-speaking opportunities. Richard joined HopeLab in 2006, with the launch of HopeLab’s first product, the Re-Mission video game for teens and young adults with cancer. The game and the HopeLab model of customer-focused, research-based product development have received international attention, including coverage in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, U.S. News & World Report, USA Today and Wired. HopeLab has distributed more than 115,000 copies of Re-Mission to 79 countries. Richard has more than 12 years experience in a variety of communications roles. Before joining HopeLab, he served as director of corporate communications for biotechnology company Chiron Corporation. He began his communications career as an editor and journalist and has written for numerous print and online media outlets. Richard has held editorial positions at the national newsmagazine The Advocate, the Los Angeles lifestyle magazine Buzz, Citysearch.com and GameSpy Industries. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California, where he studied English and creative writing.

and moderated by:

Tony Walsh PicTony Walsh
Chief Navigator of Phantom Compass

A multi-disciplined creative, Tony Walsh has helped plan, design, write and illustrate compelling, narrative-driven entertainment and educational projects since 1994. His long and productive freelance career ended in 2008 when he founded Phantom Compass, becoming the studio's first full-time employee. With a 25-year passion for playing and building games, Walsh has made play a key component of his career. In 2004 and 2005, Walsh was a game designer and writer for the multi-award-winning Regenesis Extended Reality game series, and in 2006 was a game designer and writer for the Emmy-winning Fallen Alternate Reality Game. In 2007, he was a guest Game Design instructor at the Canadian Film Centre Media Lab, a mentor for Australia's 1-week "Laboratory for Advanced Media Production," and a mentor for the Bay Area Video Coalition's 1-week "Producers Institute for New Media Technologies." In addition to managing Phantom Compass, he teaches a postgraduate-level course on Game Culture and Design for George Brown College, and lends his support to the the Interactive / Media / Design program at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague as a member of the "Pool of Masterminds," an advisory group comprised of professionals and academics. Walsh also serves as an Advisory Board member for the South by Southwest Screenburn game festival in Austin, Texas. A provocateur and cultural commentator, he has been cited in such publications as Wired, Discover, Utne, and the Harvard Business Review. In 2007, he lead a panel discussion on "Avatar-Based Marketing in Synthetic Worlds" at SXSW Screenburn. In 2006, he moderated a top-rated panel on "The Secret Sex Life of Video Games" at South by Southwest, and in 2005 was a panelist on the subject of journalism in virtual worlds.

Official Website: http://www.bavc.org/innovationsalon/

Added by bavc_innovation on May 15, 2008