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Professionals at top media companies preach innovation

By Jessica Federkeil, Point Park News Service:

The #MediaPioneers afternoon panel held in the Lawrence Hall ballroom showed Point Park University students multiple avenues in which the media landscape in Pittsburgh is growing and evolving.

During the #MediaPioneers Panel, Lexi Bulculfine from The Incline presented a tutorial on their website, featuring a unique marketing technique that has no pop-up ads and emphasises content over advertisement. Photo credit: Julie Kooser, Point Park News Service.
During the #MediaPioneers Panel, Lexi Bulculfine from The Incline presented a tutorial on their website, featuring a unique marketing technique that has no pop-up ads and emphasises content over advertisement. Photo credit: Julie Kooser, Point Park News Service.

The panel was filled with media professionals across Pittsburgh. Lexi Beculfine, editor of Pittsburgh’s newest media curation site called The Incline was a member of the panel. “The Incline launched Tuesday, the same day as the CMI grand opening.

“Its pretty cool The Incline and the Center for Media Innovation officially share a birthday,” Beculfine said.

Joining Beculfine as featured panelists included: Tracy Certo, founder and publisher of NEXTpittsburgh, Jim Kubus, manager of Upgruv, and Mila Sanina, executive director of PublicSource.

Andy Conte, the director of the Center for Media Innovation, said during his introduction that the new space will allow the University to bring in more media pioneers who are working to move the industry forward.

“We [the panelists] are a group of people embracing a forward movement,” Kubus said. “This is an example of people who are not afraid to experiment and explore new things.”

Although the panel represented a range of various media companies, they all preached one common theme: innovation.

“It’s important for all of us to be flexible moving forward with the we think of news and embrace new technology,” Kubus said. “Don’t think like you are working for a newspaper.”

Beculfine said The Incline is a mobile first news curation company. They are focusing on the platforms they know their target audience is already using to engage with readers.

Point Park students listen to media professionals in the Lawrence Hall Ballroom for the #MediaPioneers Afternoon Panel. Photo credit: Julie Kooser, Point Park News Service.
Point Park students listen to media professionals in the Lawrence Hall Ballroom for the #MediaPioneers Afternoon Panel. Photo credit: Julie Kooser, Point Park News Service.

Kubus said that a place like the Center for Media Innovation is a great tool for students entering the communications field because it provides a newfound perspective for learning.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity to build professional experience,” Kubus said. “Seeing something in real time is a great way for students to learn. I know anytime I need to learn something, I go to YouTube to see how it’s done.”

Freshman Inez Panebianco, a multimedia major, said she was nervous because she realizes how much she still has to learn, but she is excited to get work in the new center.

“I just joined U-View,” Panebianco said. “It is really cool to be learning on the newest, state-of-the-art equipment right of the bat as a freshman.”

*If you missed the livestream Tuesday afternoon, you can catch up by clicking here.

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