Last week I spent two days at this year’s re:publica conference (#rp12) in Berlin. re:publica conferences focus on all kinds of issues around the web, in particular on blogging, social media, and digital media’s effect on society. This year, re:publica’s topic strands included law & politics, education, innovation, civil action, health, and entertainment, and how each of these areas have been impacted by recent developments in digital media.
Looking at mine and others’ re-caps of the recent conferences, it occurred to me that a LOT of ground had been covered – almost too much to make sense of, at least through simple reading. In order to make things a bit easier, I’m going to summarize the main trends and themes that were not only a) repeatedly mentioned at the recent conferences, but are also b) extremely crucial for transmedia, and for this point in time.
DAY 3: Talk: Story Architecture – Crafting Transmedia Design Siobhan O’Flynn, Karine Halpern with Scott Walker How to lead audiences across different platforms is still a challenge of transmedia, and it is a crucial question for experience design. Stories are so popular because they communicate experiences and emotions. Design principles for transmedia stories: Non-linear spatial storytelling – whilst keeping the coherent and cohesive. Break the 4th wall: augmented reality. Transmedia offers tremendous opportunities for individuals to enhance their own experience of the story, to play with the content on their own terms.
My last post on ‘Creating a Transmedia Narrative‘ ignited a lengthy discussion in one of my LinkedIn groups. It seems that some of my readers thought that I was trying to establish that transmedia narratives follow different narrative norms/ no longer need to be based on traditional conventions of telling a story. This is not what I was trying to say. I merely pointed at parallels found in successful story worlds, narrative universes that withstood the test of time and continue to invite producers and audiences to expand their stories across different media. In order to last for decades or
As the concept of transmedia storytelling becomes increasingly mainstream it is important that we do not lose ourselves in continuous debates on what transmedia storytelling is and what it is not. It is relatively easy to theorize and predict with no end; what is considerably harder, however, is to turn all this transmedia theory into practical advice. Granted, we are still experimenting a lot with what works and what doesn’t, but I do believe that it is important to begin to compile transmedia successes, basic economic mechanisms, and common-sense into manuals, guide-books, and/or best-practice sets. What follows is my attempt
Today saw two very important and very similar announcements by two key players in the entertainment industry: YouTube announced the launch of Merch Store, a tool that allows artists sell their merchandise, concert tickets, and more, whilst Amazon declared that it will also start publishing – both digitally and physically – starting with 122 books coming this fall. These two revelations come only six months after Netflix announced its plan to enter the original content business, and less than two weeks after YouTube publicized its original content deal with Tony Hawk and Warner Bros., amongst others.
At last night’s Transmedia LA meetup, Kent Nichols, Partner Outreach at blip.tv, shared a few very important ground rules for producers trying to self-distribute online. Kent is a videomaker and producer himself, and some of his projects include the award-winning series Ask A Ninja as well as the all-new The Guilty Crafter. blip.tv specializes in serialized online content, and as Partner Outreach Kent helps producers (for free!) to identify the right set of practices to find an audience online, an more particularly, to find their critical mass.
Today Facebook announced it’s new layout/complete overhaul. Great summaries of the most important changes can be found at Yahoo! and at AllFacebook.com, but the question that remains is: Does the new design offer any transmedia opportunities? After all, it was also announced today that Facebook has now got over 800 million users – an immense audience, and even better possibilities of targeting particular niches due to Facebook’s unparalleled user profiling.
Tonight it was time for another ad-hoc Transmedia LA Meetup. This time the guest was Prof. Henry Jenkins, one of the earliest thought-leaders on transmedia and convergence culture. I am basing the following paragraphs solely on the notes I took during Henry’s talk, so they are no word-for-word transcription. As a matter of fact, I will be paraphrasing most of the time. If you see phrases or sentences in quotation marks, they denote a word-for-word citation, but everything else is just summing up Henry’s words.
When it comes to stylistic platform potency, there are certain aspects that determine the best use of each platform in transmedia storytelling. Unlike its economic counterpart, however, stylistic platform potency concerns itself mostly with how a narrative can be told most effectively, and more specifically, how it can be most meaningful to its audience. “How does this particular medium communicate?”