1.3 years of our lives will be spent searching for something to watch, according to an estimate by Quartz.  With the numbers of new shows, films and streaming platforms swelling, our decision paralysis is likely to get worse.

So we asked people: what makes a show or film worth your time?  The top response that came back: “if I want to talk about it afterward.”

The Watercooler was born as a way to help you find shows and films across all platforms that you’ll want to talk about afterward.  With guidance from a diverse community of writers, subject matter experts, and streaming guides, who are factoring in frame of mind and co-viewing, we hope you’ll discover films and TV series that are worth your time — and maybe even find a Binge Viewers Club to watch with and swap notes with afterward.

Ultimately, The Watercooler offers an antidote to  the isolation of binge watching and the time suck of endless scrolling – introducing us to content the algorithms might not show us, bringing the human layer  back to search and the shared experience back to viewing.

Meet the Team

MRheadhsot

Founder | CEO

Melissa ROTH

A writer and contributor to outlets including Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair and The Washington Post, Melissa also worked in a variety of roles for HBO,  Amazon and Twentieth Century Fox.  She founded The Watercooler HQ to create more relevant ways for people to discover films and original series, and to help foster more connection and community around entertainment.

aneesha

MARKETING  STRATEGIST

ANEESHA RAO

Aneesha Rao is a Google alum and the founder of  Lantera Labs, a marketing strategy and execution agency for enterprise and SMB companies. She works with brands like Side Real Estate, Outdoor Voices and Tiina the Store. Rao also founded the non-profit Lantera Education to educate those in marginalized communities, providing them access to affordable technical education. She is a data whiz at heart, and a proponent of trying anything.

Cindy White

Managing Editor

Cindy White

Cindy White has spent nearly two decades covering the entertainment industry for outlets including IGN, Collider, SyFy Channel, GeekMom, and more. Her published work also includes a romance novel set in Hollywood. She lives in the wild suburbs of Los Angeles with her husband and twin daughters.

AD INNOVATION STRATEGIST

STEVE SUSI

An Amazon Inventor Award winner for patented innovation, Steve Susi served as the first NYC creative director for Amazon Advertising, and went on to lead creative operations across Europe, Asia, and Canada, where his teams would deliver original brand experiences on behalf of hundreds of advertisers and millions of customers worldwide. Prior to Amazon, Steve was fortunate to direct talented agency teams handling the world’s best-known brands, including Mercedes-Benz, American Express, AT&T, and many more. His book Brand Currency: A Former Amazon Exec on Money, Information, Loyalty, and Time takes the reader inside the company’s operating system to reveal how Amazon has come to dominate business sector after sector. It was a 2019 Amazon category best seller.
LAZAR

SOFTWARE & DATA ENGINEER 

Lazar KOVACEVIC

Lazar is a software engineer, data scientist and entrepreneur with deep interest in psychology, pedagogy and educational IT systems. He’s spent years developing information systems that introduce users to more diverse points of view and foster the exchange of ideas with less friction and prejudice. As part of the Netflix Prize competition, and inspired by his work in multidisciplinary team which included psychologists and psychiatrists, he independently developed an effective recommender algorithm.

CREATIVE PRODUCTION LEAD

JOSH EISENMAN

A veteran Creative Executive Producer with The New York Times and Amazon Advertising, Josh has led innovative, story-based marketing productions, resource and project management for hundreds of leading brands, from AmEx and Unilever to CBS and Google. As a senior partner to Clients, Sales, Product, Data and Ad Tech teams, he’s helped transform clients’ business problems into actionable solutions, curating teams and orchestrating end-to-end execution and optimization of campaigns.

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Content creator

Jess Carpenter

Jess Carpenter is the author of the novel Les is More and a writer whose work has been featured by Scary Mommy, Psych Central, and more. With an M.S. from the University of Utah, Jess loves binge watching all the best shows with her laptop in one hand and balancing laundry/snacks in the other.

Our Advisors

KarenSilbergRichman

DKCNews EXECUTIVE

KAREN RICHMAN

Karen Richman is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at DKC, a  full-service public relations, digital communications and content production company and one of the top 10 independent PR agencies in the U.S.. In this role, she works directly with the firm’s president to oversee firm-wide strategy, day-to-day client service and internal operations. Karen has extensive experience managing marquee clients including Hello Bello, The Honest Company, Yahoo!, Gannett /USA TODAY, SELF Magazine, Marvel Entertainment, Delta Air Lines, American Greetings Properties and King Features Syndicate.

SteveScheffer

HBO PRESIDENT EMERITUS

STEVE SCHEFFER

Steve Scheffer served for decades as President of HBO’s Film Programming, Video and Enterprises, acquiring all the movies for HBO and Cinemax from the major studios and independent producers (including HBO financed theatrical productions), overseeing distribution of HBO original programming such as The SOPRANOS and SEX and the CITY and overseeing HBO’s home video operations. Previously, he held executive positions at Columbia Pictures, MGM, Allied Artists and Polydor Records. 

AdamBlazerHeadshot

LIVIT MEDIA FOUNDER

ADAM BLAZER

Adam Blazer co-founded JLTV in 2006 and served as its COO for 10 years. He built the network’s digital, cable, and satellite distribution and managed all traffic and programming teams.  Blazer founded Livit Media in 2014, where he directs the development of dozens of digital video streaming platforms, and virtual and augmented reality technologies and experiences.

RichCohenPIC

VANITY FAIR & ROLLING STONE Contributing Editor

RICH COHEN

A contributing editor at Vanity Fair and Rolling Stone, Rich Cohen is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Monsters; Sweet and Low; When I Stop Talking, You’ll Know I’m Dead (with Jerry Weintraub); The Sun & the Moon & the Rolling Stones; Tough Jews; and The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse.

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MediaBridge Capital Advisors 

Rob Levy

Rob Levy has more than 20 years of experience in the media and entertainment industry. Over the last several years, Rob has played an instrumental role as a Senior Investment Banking Advisor on several noteworthy sell-side M&A engagements for MediaBridge Capital Advisors. Previously, he served in senior operational roles at Artist Management Group, Warner Brothers, and Untitled Entertainment. Rob was also President of InterMedia Entertainment and launched the branded entertainment division of Untitled Entertainment in 2007, running it successfully through 2012.  Rob began his business career at the investment banking firm of Houlihan, Lokey, Howard & Zukin.  He holds FINRA Series 79 and Series 63 licenses. 

RioCROPPED

MEDIA & MARKETING EXECUTIVE, 21st CENTURY FOX, NBC, DISNEY

RIO CYRUS 

Rio Cyrus is a 20+ year global media and strategic marketing executive who has held senior level roles at 21st Century Fox and The Walt Disney Company. She has overseen the evolution of content distribution from transactional to subscription among leading global OTT, SVOD, Telco and MVPD platforms.

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