Webbys Tap Top AI Scientists and Gaming Pioneers In Nod To The Internet’s Future


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Casey Klurfeld


World’s Top Internet Honors Recruit Industry Big Shots from Facebook, Google, Niantic, and Amazon to Support New Categories in Machine Learning and Games

NEW YORK, September 14, 2017 — Hailed as “the Internet’s highest honor” by The New York Times, The Webby Awards launched its 22nd Annual Call for Entries today, introducing a slate of new categories and judges in both machine learning and gaming. The early entry deadline for all categories is Friday, October 27, 2017.

Some of the leading authorities on AI and machine learning are now members of the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences (IADAS) judging panel this year, including Facebook’s Director of AI Research Yann LeCun, Amazon CTO Werner Vogels, Google’s Gradient Ventures Founder and Managing Partner Anna Patterson, CyPhy Works and iRobot Co-Founder Helen Greiner, Prisma-AI Founder Alexey Moiseenkov, and Roam Analytics Co-Chief Scientist and Co-Founder Andrew Maas.

The Webby Awards also added some of the biggest names in games to the judging panel to select this year’s new Games category winners, including pioneers like Niantic/Pokémon GO Founder and CEO John Hanke, Playmatics Founder and CEO Margaret Wallace, Kill Screen Founder Jamin Warren, President of the Higher Education Video Game Alliance and former White House Gaming Advisor Constance Steinkuehler, TinyCo Co-Founder Suli Ali, Double Fine Productions Founder Tim Schafer, and top gamer Anne Munition.

“As our online experiences—from e-commerce to games to social media—have become increasingly more dynamic, it’s important to acknowledge just how sophisticated and complex the technology is that powers nearly everything we do on the Internet,” said David-Michel Davies, Executive Director of The Webby Awards. “These innovations demand recognition and we’re thrilled to celebrate the creative and visionary Internet work that continues to push the boundaries of what is possible.”

With virtual assistants and chatbots replacing human interactions for simple tasks, and automated recommendations dictating what consumers watch, listen to, read, purchase, and communicate with, the impact of automation and machine learning on the daily lives of consumers is more significant than ever. The Webby Awards and newly recruited AI experts will recognize the transformative impact of these new technologies, with new categories this year honoring excellence in Machine Learning, Messaging/Bots, and Augmented Reality, among others.

Likewise, a new suite of honors for games was introduced this year to celebrate the full range of creative and technical achievements across the gaming experience—from art direction and visual design, to user experience and music—on mobile, handheld, in-browser, and VR platforms. Past standout Webby Award-winning games that continue to drive the industry and Internet forward include the wildly popular Pokémon GO, Monument Valley, Cut the Rope, Angry Birds, and Two Dots.

The Academy also announced new members and Webby judges, including social entrepreneur and CNN contributor Van Jones, Lyft CEO and Co-Founder Logan Green, Airbnb CMO Jonathan Mildenhall, Actor Gillian Anderson, Rent the Runway Co-Founder Jen Hyman, Glossier Founder Emily Weiss, HBO Chief Digital Officer Diane Tryneski, PopSugar Founder and President Lisa Sugar, Merriam-Webster Chief Digital Officer and Publisher Lisa Schneider, and GE Chief Creative Officer Andy Goldberg. Podcasting fans will recognize new Webby judges in that discipline, such as Missing Richard Simmons host Dan Taberski, Longest Shortest Time host Hillary Frank, Hidden Brain host Shankar Vedantam, the Nancy Podcast co-host Kathy Tu, and Pineapple Street Media founder Jenna Weiss-Berman.

Also new this year is a formal Webby Award recognition for Media Company of the Year, honoring the media company with the most wins across editorial and branded content categories. With the explosion of dedicated in-house and brand content studios, media companies have found the key to developing sophisticated advertiser content that complements traditional editorial platforms. Past Webby Award-winning media companies include VICE Media, BuzzFeed, The Washington Post, National Geographic, Condé Nast, The New York Times, HBO, and BBC.

The Early Entry Deadline to submit work for Webby Award consideration is Friday, October 27, 2017. Entrants can submit work across categories including: Websites, Film & Video, Advertising, Media & PR, Mobile Sites & Apps, Social, Podcasts & Digital Audio, and new this year, Games.

In 2016, The Webby Awards received 13,000 entries from all 50 U.S. states and 70 countries worldwide, capping off the biggest celebration of the innovators, entertainers, and visionaries on the Internet last year. This year’s entrants will have the chance to join past Webby Winners like Spotify (Best Streaming Audio), The Women’s March (Social Movement of the Year), Internet Archive (Lifetime Achievement), Apple (Best User Experience), VICE (Best Cultural Website), Game of Thrones (Best Social Presence), HBO Now (Best Streaming Video), Gimlet Media (Drama), Tyler Oakley (Best Web Personality), and Girls creators and Lenny Letter founders Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner.

All entries compete for the Webby Award (as voted on by IADAS) and the Webby People’s Voice Award (as voted online by the fans). Last year, more than 850,000 Internet fans from more than 240 countries and territories around the world cast their votes. For more information on the 22nd Annual Webby Awards and to enter, please visit

Find The Webby Awards Online:

Snapchat: TheWebbyAwards
Twitter: @TheWebbyAwards
Instagram: @TheWebbyAwards

About The Webby Awards:

Hailed as the “Internet’s highest honor” by The New York Times, The Webby Awards is the leading international awards organization honoring excellence on the Internet, including Websites, Film & Video, Advertising, Media & PR, Mobile Sites & Apps, Social, Podcasts & Digital Audio, and Games. Established in 1996, The Webby Awards received 13,000 entries from all 50 states and 70 countries worldwide in 2016. The Webby Awards is presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS). Sponsors and Partners of The Webby Awards include: YouTube, WP Engine, Vitamin T, EY, Digiday, The Hollywood Reporter, Gixel, Product Hunt, and WNYC Studios.