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23rd Annual Webby Awards April 23, 2019

Meet the 23rd Annual Webby Special Achievement Winners

From Webby Video Person of the Year Issa Rae to Webby Entrepreneur of the Year Emily Weiss, and more, this year's Webby Special Achievement honorees are truly making the Internet better.

Every year, The Webby Awards honors a set of Internet icons as Webby Special Achievement Winners: people who have broken boundaries on the Internet. This year is no exception.

From Webby Artist of the Year Tierra Whack, who released her 15-minute, 15-song audiovisual album “Whack World,” to Webby Special Achievement recipient Hasan Minhaj, whose Netflix series “Patriot Act” is breaking brand new ground in terms of content and style, and more, we can’t wait to celebrate this incredible group of creative artists at The Webby this year.

Get to know the 2019 Webby Special Achievement Winners and their work below!

2019 Webby Special Achievement Winners

From Webby Video Person of the Year Issa Rae to Webby Entrepreneur of the Year Emily Weiss, and more, this year's Webby Special Achievement honorees are truly making the Internet better.

Issa Rae, Webby Video Person of the Year

There are many reasons we love Issa Rae: her groundbreaking series “Awkward Black Girl” and “Insecure”—and for her selfless use of the Internet to both educate and showcase content from diverse creators, through Issa Rae Productions.

Her original content, like “A Sip,” “pieces,” and “ColorCreative Masterclass” (which teaches viewers how to write, direct, and produce for TV), is carving a space for the next generation of Black storytellers.

Rae isn’t done yet! She further uses her online platform to advocate for multifaceted, Black stories to be told, as seen through her work with the films “Little” and “The Photograph.”

Greta Thunberg, Webby Social Movement of the Year

16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg is accepting for Webby Social Movement of the Year for igniting a global resistance of youth activists against climate change through #FridaysForFuture and #Climatestrike.

Since sharing her first school strike on Twitter and Instagram in 2018, Greta has mobilized millions of students worldwide to take a stand on behalf of climate justice, and she has pressure elected officials to act. Greta has spoken with remarkable clarity about the urgent need to act on climate change before world leaders at the UN Climate Conference, the EU, Davos, and beyond, and she has ignited an unstoppable global movement for environmental justice.

Hasan Minhaj, Webby Special Achievement

Beloved comedian and Daily Show alum Hasan Minhaj released his hit Netflix show “Patriot Act” in October 2018, and it’s quickly taken hold of the streaming economy with its refreshing talk show format.

The weekly comedy series—which dives into everything from global news and politics to pop culture—has brought streaming audiences a dynamic and informative show, that widens their worldview. Minhaj also engages fans with additional hilarious content online, like”Hasan Responds” and “Deep Cuts.”

Minhaj’s work, both online and off, continuously works to open doors for people of color and Muslims to thrive in the media and entertainment industry.

Michael Douglas, Webby Special Achievement

Legendary actor of all screens Michael Douglas shook up the streaming world with his latest role as Sandy Kominsky in the Netflix original, The Kominsky Method.—and we’re so glad he did!

Since The Kominsky Method debuted in 2018, it’s become one of the streaming platform’s most compelling shows, with Douglas’ Sandy Kominsky as an actor-turned-acting coach. Douglas’ portrayal of a man navigating his new career, a beautiful friendship, and the journey of what it means to be human is a breath of fresh air on digital platforms.

Tierra Whack, Webby Artist of the Year

A visionary artist and iconoclast in the truest sense, Tierra Whack broke the Internet mold and reconfigured it with the release of her debut album, Whack World, which was released as a 15-minute, 15-song audiovisual project on Instagram.

As a digitally native artist, Tierra Whack demonstrates that the Internet is the ultimate creative platform for experimentation, and she raises the bar for other creatives to reconsider what’s possible.

DESUS & MERO, Webby Special Achievement

Desus Nice and The Kid Mero have made their mark on the Internet by rejecting the standard rules of talk shows to bring audiences everywhere their “Bodega Boys” podcast and breakthrough show “DESUS & MERO.”

Unabashedly authentic and unapologetic, Desus Nice and The Kid Mero are perfect voices for the digital age of voracious consumption and quick wit. Desus Nice and The Kid Mero also engage their audience through their hilarious Twitter accounts (where you can find incredible content like the amazing 2019 Tucker Carlson clap-back, and more).

In an entertainment industry, that still limits opportunities for Black and Brown people, Desus Nice and The Kid Mero have raised the bar for talk shows and pop culture at large, simply by being real and keeping their brand strong.

Emily Weiss, Webby Entrepreneur of the Year

Emily Weiss has made an incomparable impact with her stand-out skincare and beauty brand Glossier, which was named a Unicorn this year for its $1.2 billion valuation. The former blog known as Into the Gloss birthed a dedicated consumer-base and one of this age’s most successful e-commerce businesses.

Throughout Glossier’s successful four years, the Internet has played a driving role; from the community being at the core of what Glossier creates and sells, to its highly active and engaging social media presence with nearly 2 million followers on Instagram alone; and well beyond.


Watch the Best Moments of the #Webbys: Monday, May 13!

Want to see this year’s Webby Special Achievement honorees make their epic 5-Word Speeches at this year’s show? Be sure to follow #Webbys to watch all the best moments from the 23rd Annual Webby Awards, hosted by Jenny Slate, as they happen on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Monday, May 13.

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