Writer/Producer Jenni Powell Explains ‘Celebrate the Web’

SeanBecker_FeliciaDay_DanielStrange.jpg
Many had a visceral reaction the the second annual Streamy Awards. On Twitter it was nicknamed “The Steamys” (as in pile of). Fans were angry. Attendees were angry. Participants disappointed and confused. Actor/writer Kim Evey called fellow web TV writer and producer Jenni Powell the day after the ceremony, Monday morning to discuss something unrelated. The two ended up talking about how they felt about this year’s Streamys. “It blew passed the mark,” Powell tells FBLA. “It should have been focused on rewarding the work.”

Evey agreed and between the two women they knew every single winner of a Streamy Award. They sent out emails talking to others who shared their sentiment about the show. “There were too many distractions going on in the background,” Powell notes. By that afternoon the conversation was going as to how to make everyone feel better. It was decided they would have another show. A small one. They invited all the winners to the Acme Theater in Hollywood the Thursday after the Streamys. Sometime around Wednesday night a fan asked about the hashtag. The phrase “Celebrate the Web” was given as their goal. Minutes later the domain was registered and donated, less than 24 hours before the show.


“We never wanted to make it an anti-Streamys,” says Powell. But it did turn out to be a supplemental. It would be like Slamdance consisting of all the winners of Sundance without the organizers of Sundance. It’s basically something that can only ever happen on the Internet. It’s the egalitarian natural of the web, where everyone has a voice and a place to air it. You also live and die by your popularity. So the web community who already lives by this reality, did what they do best, take their talent elsewhere.

So what will happen to the Streamys? From the people we’ve talked to the producers of the show got the message: they screwed up. It will happen next year with possibly a few less sponsors.

What is www.celebratetheweb.com going to evolve into? They plan on added a forum. “We want it to be a place to have a dialog,” Powell tells FBLA.

Last year when we covered the Streamys we felt that Web TV was a couple of years away from being redundant. And if the Streamys were successful they would be obsolete because Web TV would just become TV. What we would have never guessed was that a snafu by the Streamys could be so major it ended up solidifying the otherwise scattered Web TV community. They call it “bringing the community together to celebrate the web.” We call it unit cohesion against a common foe.

Either way it’s a nice twist.

Pictured are winners Felicia Day and Sean Becker at the clearly dressed down event.

Previously: The Streamys Supplemental: ‘Celebrate the Web’