robert | November 14, 2013 ‐ No Comments
robert | November 8, 2013 ‐ No Comments
Here’s my issues with transmedia hackathons:
- the emphasis is on the race to end, not the journey
- 48hrs is far too long
- some hackers come with products pre-built
- who is anyone to judge the results?
Transmedia hackthons, storyhacks, transmediaJams – the bringing together of arts and technical people have so far all suffered by framing the event as a competition rather than a collaboration. In fact the bigger the prize for the winning team, so the less collaborative everything becomes: all the teams rush off to their corner space and secretively work away… individually each person doing what they usually do.
In our Interactive Narratives meetup group, one of our members, who likes to be known as Hot Coffee (don’t ask!) wanted to see how feasible it would be to create a transmedia experience in 1 hr that had to be demonstrated to the group in 10mins or under.
The results were an incredible insight. After an hour we performed our 10min experience and it generated so much conversation, feedback and discussion that we could have gone away for another 2 hrs to further develop the idea, came back to re-perform it and then listened to another hour of feedback and so on. And that’s just on a 10min experience!
So here’s how I’d organize a storyjam:
- no more late nights. Let’s work smarter rather than longer.
- no more judges. You be the judge of your own work and use the feedback from the other participants as a yardstick
- no more prizes. The learning experience is the reward.
- Goal: create a transmedia experience that lasts 10mins or under.
Day 1 (assume Saturday)
- 9am: form teams (more below) and explain the day
- 10am: teams collaborate on designing a 10min experience
- 11am: first two teams perform their experience. If the experience isn’t ready then they don’t get to talk about it – this is the penalty for not doing something. With 2 teams, the performance will take 30mins (ok its 20mins but I’m keeping the maths simple), add 30mins per team for feedback – that’s 2hrs gone!
- 1pm: lunch
- 2pm: second two teams perform their experience.
- 4pm: spend another hour re-designing the experiences
- 5pm: Go home and get some rest or go to a coffee shop. I don’t recommend alcohol – drinking lots of water is much better for getting the neurons firing (and your liver will thank you).
Day 2 (assume Sunday)
- 9am:if the teams have been in groups of teams (see note about too many teams) then mix up the groups so everyone gets to see something new. Now the first two teams re-perform their experience. Get feedback. I expect that the feedback might be shorter on the reiteration but let’s stick with 30mins each
- noon: lunch
- 1pm: second teams re-perform
- 3pm: All back together to share learning from the past two days.
- 4pm: Go home.
Nowhere in this format does anyone perform their experience to someone not creating their own experience: there are no voyeurs or passengers. The emphasis on the two days is collaborative, peer-to-peer learning by doing.
Some might argue that 10mins isn’t long enough but you will be incredibly surprised and delighted at how rewarding it is to focus on, say, one beat of what might be a larger piece.
Team size should be 2-4 people ideally with different skills (writer, artist, actor, coder, producer, interactive, no known skills etc.)
If there are more than 4 teams then group into sets of teams.
It’s quite important that someone in the group has a concept they’d like to champion. Therefore it’s best for everyone with an idea to pitch it to the group and have people join that group to pursue it. Anyone that can’t find one other person to support their idea will need to either go home or join a team with an idea they can support – not hang around moaning or trying to subvert the group they join.
*** to be continued ***
robert | October 29, 2013 ‐ No Comments
What drew my attention was the story structure and the navigation system – it’s very engaging and allows the audience to explore the story and character threads as their interest takes them.
Check out the project at http://unlinear.tv/
robert | October 28, 2013 ‐ No Comments
Presentation given to filmmakers in Poland on Oct 25th 2013
Belen Santa-Olalla | October 23, 2013 ‐ No Comments
El fenómeno de la comunicación transmedia se expande con ganas por territorios hispanohablantes. Especialmente en Latinoamérica este tipo de narrativas participativas empiezan a resonar con bastante fuerza, ya que el carácter social de su gente hace posible que los universos narrativos sean habitados y enriquecidos por una gran multitud de participantes. En esta entrevista en Iberoamérica Televisión en el programa Confirmado, estuvimos charlando del concepto de transmedia, sus caracteristicas, su difusión y hacia dónde se encamina.
Entrevista a @Belen_Santa
robert | October 19, 2013 ‐ No Comments
Transmedia storytelling is taking the audience on an emotional journey that goes from moment to moment.
Our lives are a continuous stream of time & events. What the storyteller tries to do is join that stream and create a moment: a special event that means something. This special event stands out from all the other events because it delights, it enthralls… it engages and this is a moment.
When we approach the design of our experiences in this way it leads to an alternative way of drawing the “user journey”. Rather than presenting rows of platforms and zigzagging lines representing the audience crossing between platforms, we start with rows of audience types – keeping the audience constant and showing the platforms they encounter on their journey. The connecting lines now show how the platforms connect to each other to create an integrated experience.
The diagram below is a partial screen shot from Conducttr to illustrate the point. In this project, parents and children are working collaboratively and you can see the middle row are the shared moments.
robert | October 15, 2013 ‐ No Comments
Hoy charlamos con Luis Borruey, gerente de Infinitoo Studios y productor de la experiencia “Horror urbano en Valencia“. Nos contará sobre su proyecto:
una app – contenedor de historias que incorpora la tecnología 360º. También nos invitará a colaborar en su propuesta participativa.
Entrevista por Belén Santa-Olalla, @belen_santa
robert | October 9, 2013 ‐ No Comments
Jonny Virgo discusses the amazing success of indie #transmedia project City of Conspiracy. A must listen for anyone curious to know how #transmedia can be self-funding.
Jonny explains the reasons, the strategy and the numbers behind his book, music and live experiences.
Jonny is in conversation with Robert Pratten (@robpratten).
robert | October 2, 2013 ‐ No Comments
@robpratten talks to Marco Sparmberg (@MarcoSparmberg) from Hexagon Concepts (haexagon.org) in Hong Kong about their project 00c6: a sci-fi story throwing light on the gendercide in China.
The project forms a backdrop for a larger discussion about transmedia in Asia.
Watch the webseries on Blip.tv
robert | September 29, 2013 ‐ No Comments
One of the interesting paradoxes about the reality TV is that more a show is less like reality, so the better the ratings. By this I mean, less like our reality. Shows like The Real Housewives of… may be set in real places and show real people but their lifestyle and dramas are likely to be a million miles away from any reality that we’re familiar with.
So this got me thinking about how transmedia design principals and analysis can be applied to these types of shows.
It can be said that the shows do have their own storyworlds: the characters, locations, the belief systems, the economic systems etc. are all evident in any particular show. And so that means there must be a portal or threshold between their reality and mine; between the storyworld of the show and my real life. In fact, the more distinct we can make that portal such that there is a crossing point into the world of the show, so the stronger the show is for it.
Duck Dynasty is a good example of a show with this own storyworld full of guns, camouflage, religion, family values and dead animals. The show would have us believe that the families live in the forest living off the land and so the inner world is that bounded by the forest. When we leave the trees for urban living it feels like the characters are crossing a threshold into another land but of course the urban surroundings are part of the Duck Dynasty map just like different regions in Game of Thrones or the urban and rural areas of GTA V. But Duck Dynasty is strongest when it’s in foreign territory – visit a local play park for some half-baked product placement or to give our Christmas presents to kids at the village hall and we get closer to our world and some of the magic is lost.
Whenever a boundary can be created around the reality TV show so the program makers create a storyworld in which the audience is less likely to find contradictions which means more able to actively create belief and hence more able to immerse themselves in the world. For example, many shows put all the characters in the same house – of course it helps with the mechanics of production and increases the likelihood of conflict – but the effect is to create a bounded world that no viewer has experienced. This creates a clear definition of in world and out of world. Even when the boundary is physically less apparent, boundaries created by wealth or celebrity or deprivation or achievement help to insulate the show from everyday experience and this create the attraction.
Drillability is often the enemy of the reality TV show because the more we drill, the more we peer behind the curtain and see that the “reality” of the show is far from the full truth. On Duck Dynasty we hardly see all the employees that must keep the company running and on X Factor we hardly hear about the researchers who listen to all the contestants long before they get to the celebrity judges. The program makers try not to remind us of these facts because they spoil the illusion – they break the reality of the reality show. Anyone that’s searched the Internet to find further details behind incidents in a show steps across an in-world and out-of-world boundary often resulting in a detrimental experience: curiosity kills the cat just like discovering your favourite gadget is made in a sweatshop or your favourite food is made from the bone & gristle of animals treaded inhumanely.
When looking to build extensions, then, why not dispense with “reality” and extend into pure fiction?
The world of Buffalo Bill Cody gives us an interesting example of fictionalized transmedia storytelling for a real world character. So remote was the Wild West of pioneer Buffalo Bill that most people wouldn’t know the difference between a truthful account of a fight with Indians and a fictionalized one. So why bother pretending? The Buffalo Bill storyworld offers us cartoons, novels, theatre plays – in which he used to play himself – and a live travelling exhibition of staged encounters.
Why not take Si Robertson and give him his own comic strip? Why not take Millionaire Matchmaker and make photo-love stories and romance novels? A Facebook social game for Celebrity Rehab?
By further fictionalizing the reality TV shows, it gives the property endless potential for expansion without having to ever worry about reality again.