Q:What is new about the panel submission process in 2016?
A: The big change this year is that the top 10 vote getting panels and top 4 trainings will be automatically selected provided they meet our diversity and content guidelines. This means that all panel proposals will be posted publicly after they are submitted. You can vote once per day for as many sessions as you’d like.
Q: Will I get a confirmation email with a copy of my submission?
A: Yes! The email will come from ‘’ with a reply-to address of ‘,’ which is the email to use to if anything looks incorrect.
Q: Do I have to login to vote for a panel/training? How do I login to vote?
A: You need to be logged into the Netroots Nation website to be able to vote. The page to login or create a login is here.
Q: Did it count my vote? I don’t see a ‘submit’ button.
A:YES, if the checkmark shows up in your browser, your vote has been counted. There is no “submit” button for voting, just hit the checkbox.
Q: Can you edit the proposal after it is submitted
A: No, unfortunately not.
Q: What does the asterisk on “trans*” mean?
A: Quoting from site It’s Pronounced MetrosexualTrans* is an umbrella term that refers to all of the identities within the gender identity spectrum.” They even have a handy graphic that helps explain.
Q: Is there a cost for speakers to register for Netroots Nation?
A: Yes. There will be a deeply discounted registration cost for panelists, trainers and speakers. The earlybird speaker rate is just $125 for the entire conference (less than the cost of a day pass), it will increase as the conference approaches. We will be offering panel organizers a limited pool of scholarships based on need. But if you’re communicating with potential panelists before you submit you should be sure to mention this policy. If you have more questions about this policy, email us at
Q: What does a good session proposal look like?
A: It’s always a good idea to check out sessions we’ve done in the past. You can view Netroots Nation 2015 here. But generally we’re looking for sessions that are diverse, well targeted to our audience and interesting. Successful panels usually have a cross-issue focus, present an action-oriented take on an issue or share lessons learned, include experienced moderators and interesting speakers, and are not a commercial for a single organization or product. Successful trainings are skills-focused, not discussion or debate-focused, and can range from beginner/basic to expert/advanced level. When you’re describing your speakers or trainers, make sure to tell us why they’d be a good fit for the panel and what role they’re playing or what their expertise is. Simply pasting in speaker bios generally isn’t helpful. 
Q: How important is diversity?
A: It’s incredibly important. Panels containing only white men are rejected automatically, so don’t submit them. Panels which are gender balanced but don’t include any people of color are not looked upon favorably in the scoring process. For reference, in 2015, based on the submissions as accepted, 62% of our speakers were people of color and 63% were women. If your session is accepted, we may ask you to make changes to better reflect our commitment to diversity.
Q: What are all the different kinds of content I can submit?
A: Netroots Nation accepts submissions for several kinds of sessions: Panels, Trainings, and Screening Series Sessions (films/video). Only panels and trainings are posted publicly or voted on.
Q: What if I want to submit a film for the Screening Series?
A: Click here to submit a film for consideration.
Q: What if I’m the organizer and the moderator?
A: That’s fine. There is a place to indicate that on the submission form.
Q: How important is spelling, grammar and punctuation in my submission?
A: It’s important. Reviewers read lots of submissions and glaze over when things are hard to understand because of bad grammar and punctuation. Don’t fall victim to it. Also be aware of cutting and pasting errors.
Q: Will all this information I submit be released publicly?
A: No, it’s just for our reviewers to read or so we can get in contact with you. If your session is selected, we may post your session title and description, but there will be a chance to revise/update before the conference.
Q: How long is a session?
A: Each session is 75 minutes. You should allow time for Q&A within that time block.
Q: When will my session take place?
A: The panel will be scheduled for Thursday, Friday or Saturday, July 14, 15 or 16. Let us know if you have specific scheduling needs and we’ll do our best to accommodate. The sooner we’re aware of scheduling concentrations after accepting panels, the more likely we can accommodate.
Q: Does Netroots Nation pay for air travel or hotel accommodation?
A: No. Speakers are asked to cover the cost of their travel and hotel accommodations. Information about scholarship opportunities will be released in the spring.
Q: What if I want more than four panelists and a moderator?
A: It isn’t possible to submit more than 4 panelists with our system. We generally discourage this, but we have bent the rules on occasion. We’ve found there is not enough time for everyone to speak AND involve the audience if there are more than five people on stage. 
Q: When should I expect to hear back on my submission?
A: You’ll find out in early March if your panel has made it to the final round and late March if your panel has been selected for NN16. View the timeline here.
Q: How are panels selected?
A: Panels will be divided into generally similar categories and each group will be reviewed by a committee of experts. Those committees will recommend several of the best from each category to a final committee, which will make final decisions. You can find more information about our process here.
Q: Can I suggest myself or another person to speak on another panel?
A: Unfortunately, the only way you can submit a speaker is to include them on a panel, screening series, or training session submission. You can always email us at the address below and we’ll take it under consideration.

Have a question that’s not covered here? Email us at panelsNN16 at

Netroots Nation 2017