Thursday, August 23, 2012

5 Networking Events to Prep You for DIG on November 14, 2012

The Countdown Begins Until the Fun Starts at DIG 2012

To further prepare you for the awesomeness that you will experience at the Digital Interactive and Gaming Conference, we at the DIG headquarters have put together a short list of 5 networking events to attend before November 14, 2012.

This year’s DIG Conference is just under 3 months away and we are getting excited. Registration for this year’s conference is open! Early bird passes are available before October 14, 2012 and you know what they say, the early bid gets the discount.

Here are some local events to tide you over and help you to meet some new friends to bring with you to DIG 2012!


London Creative Network – Quarterly Meet-up
LONDON – Various Venues

If I told you that there is a large group of people who are creative, like you, and gather quarterly to eat, drink and network would you come with me? Get social the old way!  The London Creative Network is an organization of London's creative industry including graphic designers, web developers, photographers, writers, marketers, printers, account managers and everyone else in the creative industry.  The LCN hosts a quarterly event where all are welcome to "hang-out, catch-up with friends and meet new people, all without agenda leaving attitudes at the door for a great night out."

Find a friend to accompany you to DIG?


Geek Dinner – Monthy Meet-up
LONDON – Various Venues

If you have a blog, podcast or anything else involved with the Internets then Geek Dinner is for you. If you are interested in getting engaged with the social media community in London, Ontario then Geek Dinner is for you too. The monthly event’s motto “No seminars, no keynotes, no speakers, just people of similar interests getting together for some food, drinks, and conversation.” Geek Dinners are hosted in various Downtown restaurants and always have free wi-fi, so netbooks, laptops, and gadgets are welcome. *YES!*

Want to get in on the next meet up?


Project Play – September 16, 2012
LONDON – Fanshawe College Student Centre

Have you always wanted to attend E3 but never got your chance? On September 16, 2012 unite with local video gamers, magic and RPG players, cosplayers and enthusiasts at Southwestern Ontario’s largest hands-on gaming event: Project Play!
This is your chance to get ready for DIGX at the networked gaming competitions, put on your costume skills in the cosplay competition or show off your creative flair in the digital art gallery.
Project Play is also a fundraiser, with every dollar raised being used to purchase gaming bundles for community organizations in London and the surrounding area. That’s a gaming event that we can stand behind!

PSST! We hear that Sony is bringing their promotional tractor trailer to ProjectPlay, filled with your favourite titles for the Play Station 3 and Play Station Vita!

Learn more at


Fluxible – September 22-23, 2012
KITCHENER - Conrad Centre for the Performing Arts & The Tannery and Communitech Hub

Fluxible is the User Experience event to go to before DIG! Get warmed up with 2 days with some of the world’s top User Experience pros in a format that mixes hands-on workshops with informative presentations and plenty of chances to make new friends over great food and drinks. Register today using the code DIGLONDON to receive $200 off your ticket! Is that a great deal or what!?

Learn more and register at


Digi Fest  – October 18-20, 2012
TORONTO – Corus Quay

Digifest is Toronto’s international festival celebrating innovation and digital creativity. Similar to DIG, emerging and seasoned designers, technicians and artists come together to experience firsthand what the digital industry in Canada has to offer. Digifest educates attendees on the latest interactive & mobile media, gaming, art and design, architecture, simulation and more!
Interested? Check out:


London, Ontario, Canada is full of professionals just like you who are looking to network, learn, explore and connect with colleagues and new contacts. Our creative cultural city is working together every day in new ways to incubate our industry, as a result a plethora of networking events abound right around the corner from your workplace.

DIG welcomes you and all your new friends to the conference of the year happening right here in a place where we can feel proud to live, learn, work and play. See you on November 14th!


Katie Wilhelm is a Marketing and Communications Coordinator at the London Economic Development Corporation. Her favourite game of all time is Shining Force II for the Sega Genesis. Follow her on twitter today: @KatieWilhelm

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Fresh to Death: Matchbox Pictures’ Devil Seed and Content Creation in London, ON

Trisha Beausaert

 Let’s talk creativity. More explicitly, let’s talk content creation. Shall we go even further? Content creation in London, Ontario. Of the significant industries that London boasts, the Content Creation industry (which includes Digital Media/Information & Communications Technology) is one that is gaining global attention. London is making itself known for content creation in many modalities: Film, television and broadcasting, video game production, web development, print media, and art. With the recent release of Devil Seed, a horror film produced and directed by London-based production company, Matchbox Pictures, the quality and world-class products of content creation companies is expanding the reach of London into the global markets. 

Finding itself at the top of itunes Canada downloads, and edging out Hollywood horror blockbuster, Devil Seed’s success is an indication of the quality products London’s creative industries can offer. “The creative industry here is incredible, it’s striving, and it is only getting better,” states Brittany Medeiros, Coordinator of the onEdge (Emerging Digital Gaming Enterprises) Network. “London is starting to make its mark on the creative world, and people are starting to acknowledge it.” With local brands and projects becoming major players on the world stage, London’s creative market is being identified as fresh and accessible.


Gary Elmer, in charge of Production and Development at Matchbox Pictures and producer of Devil Seed, explains that the company has shot television and movies locally, nationally, and internationally. Devil Seed was filmed, edited, and produced entirely in London using a team made up exclusively of London talent. According to Elmer, “London excels at providing a company with everything that is needed on a daily basis for a fraction of the combined costs of a larger center, and the things that it does not have, like specialized equipment, can be brought in as needed.” Elmer also reveals the Devil Seed shoot to be “one of the best shoots [they] have ever been on,” and he maintains that “it is a great business decision to produce here.” When asked about why the production company works out of London, Ontario, Elmer responded: “it has always been a pleasure to shoot in London. The paperwork required to do things is one quarter of what it would be in Toronto. The City departments are agile, friendly, and professional. Local businesses have been extraordinary in their support and we have an excellent base of local talent here.” 

The local talent alone is one of the driving forces behind this expanding industry in the city. Two post-secondary institutions, Fanshawe College and the University of Western Ontario, turn out educated and savvy professionals every year  who support the content creator companies established in the city. The London Economic Development Corporation’s Larry MacKinnon, reasons, “having an engaged community breeds growth- having a great college and university builds exceptional talent.” The mix of new talent and reputable business practices elevates the content creation industry as it grows and becomes more advanced and profitable. MacKinnon also notes that “our creative future looks prosperous as London is being embraced by its populace as a creative, cultural city, with independent business groups constantly being created.” 

The DIG conference is another example of the increasing prevalence of content creators. Representing game and web development companies across the country, content creators gather in downtown London to present and discuss new products, attitudes, and ideas as the industry continues to evolve. As well, the local students who attend the event have access to school representatives and recruiters, which expands and develops the content creation machine in London even further.  Just as Matchbox Picture’s Elmer puts it, “there is freshness . . . here, [in London].”

The low costs associated with producing content here, coupled with sophisticated and innovative talent and access to resources within and just outside the city, all contribute to the high-end nature of the products being generated for global consumption. With studios for every type of content creation imaginable flocking to London, and the success of such companies being recognized internationally, such as Matchbox Pictures' Devil Seed and Digital Extremes' entire game portfolio (see DIG’s profile on Digital Extreme’s office space, here), it is indeed a great business decision to produce creative content in the Forest City. 

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