VidCon: The Future of Television Is Here

If you're wondering what the next wave of television will look like, you should head to VidCon.

I mean it. Pack your bags, get up from your desk and drive down to Anaheim, where anyone who's anyone in online video is converging for the 5th annual conference.

“This is no longer the future of video," said Fullscreen CEO and founder George Strompolos to a room full of the MCN space's movers and shakers during the opening industry keynote Thursday. "These are creators that have captured a generation. They have spoken to the hearts and the minds of the youth.”

Strompolos is right on the money. Literally. (His company Fullscreen announced during the event that they are investing $10 million in creator "passion projects" in 2014.)

The younger generation was out in full force, lining up outside the convention center's doors well before their stars arrived.

They packed the meeting rooms and flooded the exhibit floors to get a chance to see React video series creators The Fine Brothers, beauty vlogger Michell Phan and What the Buck? star Michael Buckley among many, many others.

Names that might not mean all that much to most. But they mean the world to the YouTube consuming 16-34-year-olds.

“Consumers are becoming creators, and some of these creators, as we know VidCon is a perfect example, are building massive, massive audiences,” said Strompolos.

Not long after his keynote, a group of teenage girls ran through the lobby, screaming when they saw one of their stars.

Jessika Walsten

Jessika is content engagement director of Broadcasting + Cable, Multichannel News and NextTV. She has been with the brands in various roles since 2013. In her current role, she works primarily behind the screen, keeping an eye on the website and fixing any site bugs. A graduate of USC Annenberg, Jessika has edited and reported on a variety of subjects for NextTV, including profiles on industry leaders and breaking news.