About

Patricia Handshiegel

Digital Dish covers the ins and outs of an Internet executive moving into the television arena. Disher Patricia Handschiegel is the founder of Stylediary.net, which she sold to Stylehive.com in November 2007. She has a background in Internet infrastructure and technology business, was an advisor to Kaboodle.com (sold to Hearst in 2007), and has contributed as an entertainment/media business writer for Venturebeat.com. She’s also been an early visionary of professional Internet TV content since 2005 and is currently an advisor on several entertainment/Internet projects. Always an entrepreneur, she had a highly profitable babysitting monopoly at 11, lent her writing skill to students at 17 and landed her first published national article at 23.

She has also worked as a ghost writer for a national TV correspondent. At 22, she was recognized nationally for promoting the growth of women’s hockey and advised companies on creating hockey products for women. She’s been quoted and profiled in dozens of media outlets since and is currently developing two book concepts. A serial entrepreneur, she plans to continue to build Internet, entertainment and media companies, with the goal of promoting social change and charities. She is currently involved in the use of technology to help find missing and abused children, and has contributed financially to TheJoyfulChild.org and other organizations. She is the founder of Look|Shop|List.com (in development).

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How Creative Can TV Be?

October 20, 2008 2:15 PM

I’ve been working on broadcast television projects for the past few months. When I think about how things can be produced and what TV shows can include, it’s exciting. I’ve already posted that about ancillary revenue streams and a Web/interactive element baked in, but it’s more than just that. Different camera angles, unique themes, etc. It feels like the possibilities are endless!
I’m new to the entertainment business though. I wonder: How creative will you get to be on your first projects in the eyes of development execs?

I’ve watched TV many years and it plays a part in the shows I am creating. A lot of my concepts also evolved out of feedback/chatter on and offline over the years of owning my social media company, Stylediary.net. I tried to incorporate some of the things that it seemed people wanted. For those who may be new to Digital Dish, I spent a long time in media before moving into TV (including owning Stylediary). I’ve been excited to take what I’ve learned in media into my television projects. Lots of what we’re doing has been seen on other shows, too.

It’s all very cool. But as I talk with my production partners, manager, etc., it seems that a lot of network executives play it safe and keep to what works. It’s said that there is little room to be creative.

I’m not surprised—even in the short time I’ve been directly in the market, it’s obvious that it’s difficult to know what’ll be a hit and what won’t. I know it’s also very hard to land a high-level, decision-maker role in the business.

But I have heard more than once that television suffers as a result. For every “Heroes” or “Entourage,” they say, are a half-dozen scripted and non-scripted shows that feel redundant.
But with the down market, where people might be turning to the Internet and TV more, I wonder: Could it be a good time to put TV on blast and switch things up to generate a new excitement about shows?

UK television comes out with really interesting ideas that are often replicated here. What if American TV could turn it the other way around?

I would love to see it, not just as a creator/producer but as a viewer too.

But as ad revenues are expected to go down, I wonder if it’ll make it even harder for networks to take creative risks. Only time will tell—both overall and with my projects. I’d love to hear people’s thoughts on this.

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