Tribeca Hacks: Frequently Asked Questions


What is a Hackathon?

A Hackathon is an event where people get together and build a product in a short amount of time.  Ranging in topic, format and length, our Hackathons always focus on storytelling and explore new tools and methods of story creation.

What is the goal of Tribeca Hacks?

We bring together content creators and creative technologists to increase understanding and broaden participation in the field of interactive storytelling.

How does a Tribeca Hacks work? 

Each of our Hackathons are a bit different.  Some are short in length and just focus on knowledge building through workshop and working groups. Others are more intensive and involve an actual team being built around a particular focus. Each of Hackathons are meant to encourage collaboration and immersion into the digital realm.

What is a Blackbox?

A blackbox is an applicant who doesn’t fit in any of the other categories (storyteller/designer/technologist). A blackbox possesses interdisciplinary skills in storytelling, tech and/or design, or a unique skill that would contribute to the group dynamic and project by pushing it to a new creative level (e.g. composer, choreographer).

Where are the Tribeca Hacks located?

Tribeca Hacks is international. We've built out events in New York, Cambridge, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Chicago and even Geneva and Paris. We are actively looking to expand our program to other locations.


How do you select applicants/participants?

Each application is different, but we select participants from all fields, who are willing to think outside the box and try innovative approaches to create content.

Do I need to be a hard-core tech-er?

No you don't, but if you're one, that's great!

Can I apply with a partner? 

We usually prefer to create a new team but are open to consider previous collaborations. Please note this in your application.

How am I placed in a team? How will my team work?

We try to create collaborative teams by bringing together complementary assets, taking into consideration the Hackathon's scope as well as the projects' needs. Note that some of our Hackathons are closer to a workshop, in that case participants aren't part of a team, but are still invited to interact with others.

I missed the deadline, can I still apply?

Due to the large number of applicants, we have to be strict about our deadlines. But check back in for future Hackathons via our website, TFI newsletter, or Twitter!

Can I apply to more than one Hackathon?

Yes you can, but read each Hackathon's description to ensure you are applying to events that best suit your skill set and focus.

I don't live in the same state as the Hackathon, can I still apply?

Of course!  However, due to limited budgets we're unable to provide travel or accommodations.

Why are some Tribeca Hacks not open to the public?

Some Hackathons are dedicated to our film grantees and professional technologists. However if you're really interested in one of them, please feel free to contact us at 


Do I need to bring anything?

Bring your computer and necessary project materials. We'll provide the rest. Usually we try to introduce team members to each other a few weeks prior to the event so that you can discuss and prepare video, photo, audio. Please look at our toolbox.

How long is it? Do I have to stay there for the entire Hackathon?

Each Hackathon lists its duration. Once confirmed as a participant you are required to complete the event.

I need sugar? Will I be fed? 

Yes, we provide meals, coffee and snacks. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate dietary restrictions. 

Do I need to pay to attend?

Most of our Hackathons are free, and there is usually no submission or participation fee.

Is transportation included?

No, we do not pay expenses for travel or accommodations.


What am I creating?

We'll provide you with the framework and scope of the Hackathon. You (and your team) are encouraged to create whatever you wish!

What am I winning?

It's usually not a competition. Tribeca Hacks is an opportunity to develop projects, discover new tools and meet amazing people.

What are the results? Where do they live?

The Tribeca Film Institute doesn't have ownership over any of the project. However, we will share it on our website and showcase it to the world! Nevertheless we will address the ownership issue with the different team members before the Hackathon.

Are the results shown to the public?

It depends on the Hackathon, but participants usually have the opportunity to present their results at the end of the event to the other participants, as well as to a small group of guests and partners. 


How can I promote my project and the Hackathon I participated to?

Use our hashtag #tribecahacks on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.