Anastasia Kozitsyna at SlidesLive: Communicating Across Continents
As editing supervisor at SlidesLive, Anastasia Kozitsyna understands what goes into the post-production process after a large conference or event. Anastasia has been in the audio and video industry since attending Czech Technical University in Prague and receiving her master’s degree in Audio/Video Technology and Signal Processing.
“I believe it’s my 5th year with SlidesLive already (since summer 2017)! Time flies,” Anastasia said. “When I first came to SlidesLive, we didn’t have our spacious and cozy office. I mean, our ‘office’ was just a tiny room in a student dormitory with a server hidden in a wardrobe.”
But things have definitely changed since then. With SlidesLive, Anastasia has accelerated her career, becoming an editing expert. With tons of equipment to work with, Anastasia needs a lot more space than what’s available within a dormitory wardrobe.
“I started as an editor part-time, and since then, I’ve been mixing different positions: cameraman, live stream operator, editor (more like highlight videos editor, for example, the SlidesLive sizzle is my work), graphic creator and so on,” Anastasia said. “And now I ended up doing editing supervision for big events as well as coding.”
The big events that Anastasia works on require a ton of editing. However, Anastasia gathers a team of editors that help her out with the job. Still, as supervisor, she must ensure that communication goes smoothly and that all team members are aware of the SlidesLive workflow while dealing with post-production.
“So for big events with thousands of pre-recordings and dozens of parallel workshops, it’s just not possible to deal with all the parts of production on your own,” Anastasia said. “And the editor supervisor is a manager of the post-production side. You need to gather a team and teach people our workflow because when you’re an editor, it doesn’t make you a SlidesLive editor by default. We are developing quite a unique automation system that requires team members to become familiar with. So as an editing supervisor, you are in the middle of everything: communicating with the production manager, editors, IT and clients.”
Yet Anastasia’s position as editing supervisor didn’t always exist in the way it does today. Anastasia serves as the middleman between production managers and editors across countries and continents, making sure all communication goes smoothly so that the SlidesLive team can work efficiently and please the client.
“Before COVID, we had more production managers in the US,” Anastasia said. “And it was extremely hard for them to communicate with the editors in Prague (editing is happening in Prague). And I don’t mean just the language barrier and time difference. It was more about the workflow. So co-founder Vojta Ciml came up with the idea of creating this new position: someone in between editing and production who knows the workflow and can communicate with the client.”
The editing team at SlidesLive handles a ton of customization for clients. With social media videos differing from long videos of dialogue, there’s a lot that the editing team must master. However, one of the most interesting aspects of editing for SlidesLive remains in the company’s pre-recording feature.
“I think the most fascinating and futuristic part is pre-recording editing,” Anastasia said. “The pipeline starts with the recorder: software for speakers to record their talks in the most convenient way. When they’re satisfied with the recording, the materials are uploaded to our server and processed. We’re trying to minimize manual work as much as possible, so there are a bunch of automatically updated spreadsheets, automatically created timelines for the editors, and even some of the talks are edited completely automatically.”
Even with a lot of automatic editing, Anastasia’s role as editing supervisor is definitely stressful at times. But with the SlidesLive team, that stress is worth the amount of fun and satisfaction felt during and after a big event.
“Sometimes it’s just crazy: the stress level is high, hours of sleep are low,” Anastasia said. “But even in those cases, we have a great deal of fun. And we also care about each other which is so sweet and important. So when you are stressed out and sleep-deprived, there is always someone to help you or at least bring you a cup of coffee and cheer you up.”
The SlidesLive team is full of flexible, free and open-minded individuals. With a team of friends who care about each other, Anastasia is able to speak her ideas into existence without fear of rejection. And that’s what being a part of a team is all about.
“You know the cliche phrase that you can be whatever you want to be? I think it’s so true for SidesLive,” Anastasia said. “Everyone is open to new ideas, and you can wear as many hats as you want to. SlidesLive is not just a place where you work from 9 to 5, and it’s not ‘I work for SlidesLive’, it’s more like ‘We are SlidesLive.’ And it’s just amazing how we’re synchronized in our mindset.”