About StoryFile

“I just wanted to be able to sit across from a person’s video and have a real conversation!”

Heather Maio-Smith, Co-Founder & CEO, StoryFile

StoryFile's Story

In 2010 Heather Maio-Smith was creating an exhibit on intergenerational testimony with Holocaust survivors. As she talked to Rose Schindler, she realized that her unborn grandchildren would never have the chance to talk with them personally as she was doing ‘I wanted to be able to sit across from her and have a real conversation!’

After creating a 3D prototype, she brought the project to USC Shoah Foundation and USC Institute of Creative Technologies and formed a partnership to secure in-depth interviews interactively.

Heather had always intended that once the survivors were filmed, that anyone should be able to tell their story and save it for future generations. And so in 2017, along with Co-Founders Stephen D. Smith, Sam Gustman and Ceci Chan StoryFile were created as an automatic, cloud-based platform that would bring the power of conversational video into everyone’s hands.

Speak with Rose Schindler's StoryFile
StoryFile's Company Values

From the outset StoryFile determined it would be a company that people could trust.

Our company values reflect our product. We are innovative, we aim to be trustworthy, and to be authentic. In a world of bots, droids and avatars, we took the decision that we wanted to make video more human.

We decided at the heart of our values is you and your story.

PHOTO: StoryFile’s first two employees – Gabrielle Sobel and Julia Campbell
Do Well, Do Good

StoryFile is a technology company that has a social conscience.

We are a for-profit venture and provide our investors with good returns. We also believe that social capital has value too. The founders of StoryFile operate on a 'do well, do good' principle. We believe it is possible to do good things in society, while doing well in business. This philosophy combined with the values of innovation, trustworthiness and authenticity, help guide our decision making and business model.

PHOTO: Heather Maio-Smith, CEO StoryFile and Stephen Smith, Chairman
Meet the StoryFile Team

Viola Fletcher, 106, Tulsa Race Massacre Survivor

We have committed ourselves to the promotion of ethical AI.

There has been much debate about the future of AI and there are undoubtedly dangers associated to algorithms making human decisions.

StoryFile’s conversational video uses AI to help the process of storing and retrieving the video content provided by our customer. Our commitment is to them. We do not change any content or manipulate to say something that was not said, or recreate the image in ways that were not intended.

We strive to make our AI free of racial, religious, gender or linguistic biases. We want to ensure that our AI policies promote fairness on our platforms and do everything we can to reflect the true intention of the interviewee. And because we believe AI should be transparent we have a publicly accessible ethical AI policy.

Learn More about The Tulsa StoryFile Exhibit

We have committed ourselves to creating a diverse, inclusive, safe, and respectful place to work.

We recognize that there has been a long history of privilege dominated by patriarchal, white hegemony (written by a white male founder). We are committed to overcoming the disadvantages and exclusion that our economy, society, and culture has forced upon vulnerable groups. Because those biases are built into a long history of marginalization we recognize that it will take considerable effort to ensure that StoryFile reflects and represents the entire population.

To help achieve that our diversity, equity and inclusion policies provide guidelines to ensure that our hiring is equitable, our culture diverse, and our work practices inclusive across the organization.