What Happened At Playlist Live Orlando

So, Let’s talk Playlist Live.

In case you don’t know what that is, Playlist Live is an online video convention that seems to be more for Viners (although, now that Vine is officially dead, will it be more about YouTube now?) than YouTubers. Regardless, online content is its thing, just like VidCon. Playlist Live is held in two areas: Orlando, Florida, and Washington, D.C.

A few weeks ago, I made an announcement saying that I was going to run a workshop called Disability Representation and Accessibility at Playlist. This was the first time I was going to be there.

Getting things set up was a very interesting and a little bit of a difficult experience. Because I wasn’t involved in a lot of the conversation regarding accessibility, which was a huge mistake and I really should have been adamant to Playlist and my network that I need to be involved in my accessibility because I know what’s best, I didn’t know what I was getting until the very last minute and that was just too late. But I was assured that I would having CART and interpreters at my workshop. I also wanted an interpreter, but I originally wasn’t allowed one. Why? I never received an answer, but I wasn’t taking no for one and I said that I need to have an interpreter so I can also enjoy the event like everyone else. There was irony in the fact that I was asked to run a workshop on disability representation and accessibility and not being given an interpreter.

I got the interpreter within a day and that made me wonder exactly what was going on behind the scenes.

If you want to see a full vlog of stuff that went on at Playlist, you can view the vlog I uploaded to go along with this here. But this article is meant to talk about one thing (besides the fight for an interpreter): I didn’t get to do my workshop.

A few weeks before Playlist, I confirmed that I was doing a PowerPoint presentation and I would be doing an activity, so I would be needing a PowerPoint projector and screen as well as index cards and pens to run the workshop. I got my okay and then I was looking forward to the workshop, although I was very worried that nobody besides two friends of mine were going to come.

I went to check in to my workshop 30 minutes before start time and I asked about my index cards and pens. Nobody had any idea what I was talking about. Then I go into my workshop room when it starts and I’m confused because I thought it was another waiting room because there was no PowerPoint screen and no screen for the CART.

So CART is trying to figure out how/where to set up and I’m still walking around going, “Okay, so you all are here for the workshop, but how am I supposed to do my workshop when nothing I need is here…?” So my interpreter and I are running around trying to figure out what happened and trying to find someone to tell us why my stuff isn’t there and to get someone to put the stuff in there. At this point, my head is is spinning a bit and I’m not thinking very well.

Now my interpreter is running around by herself trying to find out what’s going on and I go back to my room to tell everyone what is happening. This is about 10-15 minutes into what is supposed to be my workshop. Fast forward 20-25 minutes into the workshop and people are coming in with equipment. I think to myself that it’s going to take them 10-15 minutes to get ready then it’ll take me and my own equipment to go with it about 10 minutes to get ready. By the time everything is setup, there’s very little time to present.

So I didn’t. I wasn’t given what I needed to do a full fledged workshop and it couldn’t happen.

But we did manage to make it into some sort of discussion rather than a panel or a workshop. I gave a quick summary of what the workshop was supposed to be since someone asked. Then others with different disabilities chimed in on their own accessibility needs, or helped out with what I would’ve explained in the workshop. So something happened, at least.

Was it what I wanted, what it was supposed to be, what it should’ve been? No. But I’m glad we got something out of it. I just hope people enjoyed at least that part.

I sent Playlist a message and hadn’t received anything since. My manager talked to them, but I have not been reached out to personally. They told my manager that because two panels/workshops before me did not use it, they did not test it out and did not place the screen for the third workshop to use it. This response makes zero sense to me, as I am not the first two workshops and I said I needed it in order to do my job.

I received no chance to reschedule my workshop that weekend and have not been offered any other solution.