When it comes to bringing together the best minds in music, technology, film, and gaming, there’s no doubt that South by Southwest (SXSW) stands out. Securing its place as an annual melting pot where brilliant minds from different worlds meet and gather to show off to a global audience, SXSW has become one of the most anticipated festivals every year.
Held in Austin, Texas every mid-March, SXSW is a nine-day event, which features three divisions: music, film, and interactive. Each division puts the spotlight on great and upcoming talents from their respective fields.
It comes as no surprise, therefore, that this year the festival attracted thousands of people on social media. With an undeniable focus on SXSW’s interactive division, Twitter (with 97 percent of mentions) became perfect avenue for both attendees and online spectators to talk about what’s new and trending on SXSW— the “breeding ground for new ideas and creative technologies.”
March 12 marked the day when SXSW received the highest number of posts on social media. The annual festival received almost 1.25M posts. Posts that garnered the most mentions talked about former US Vice President Joe Biden’s speech, artificial intelligence (AI), and virtual reality. It’s clear how AI and virtual reality were hot topics in this year’s festival, as told by the massive mentions they both received on social media. A high amount of mentions also focused on SXSW’s keynote speakers: Gareth Edwards, a film director; Lee Daniels, film and TV producer; and Nile Rodgers, a record producer.
This year’s SXSW also featured the Interactive Innovation Awards, wherein the most exciting tech developments were honored. “Release It” was an SXSW segment that launched new services and products through a pitch competition among today’s brightest tech startups. Release It’s buzz on social media was evident, with 29 percent of posts mentioning Abarty’s Health (streamlined services for healthcare), this year’s Release It winner.
Music—SXSW’s strongest suit—continued to attract thousands of attendees each passing year. High-profile premieres and casting reveals kept people glued in to what SXSW has in store for everyone. The latest and greatest in tech can see their future set in SXSW’s stages. This is why SXSW is a festival like no other—it’s a big world and there is something for everyone.
To get in-depth details on this year’s SXSW, read our infographic.