Thursday, November 29, 2012

What is the future of storytelling? Immersion, interactivity, integration and impact

What is the future of storytelling? Immersion, interactivity, integration and impact | Transmedia Spain |
As consumer technology evolves at an ever-quickening pace, opportunities for new forms of storytelling are emerging. Experimentation is all well and good, but what do audiences actually want? To answer this question, research has been performed in The Future of Storytelling project.
Unsurprisingly, these early adopters are keen to take advantage of everything that technology has to offer. Their key demands are summarized as ‘The 4 I’s': Immersion, Interactivity, Integration and Impact. Essentially, they want to be able to explore a story in greater depth, and have it reach out of the confines of a single medium and play out in ‘the real world’.
The people Latitude spoke to were very keen on ‘transmedia’ experiences – stories that are told over multiple formats (think TV dramas where characters have real-life social media profiles that help tell the story).

How Leaders Can Inspire Action Through Compelling Storytelling

How Leaders Can Inspire Action Through Compelling Storytelling | Transmedia Spain |
Great communication changes people. It changes the way they feel. It changes what they do.The secret to inspiring others is connecting an idea or a vision with a hope or a need.
Great communicators leverage their message and story in one way or another to make a connection and compel change.
HOPEHIV’s Phil Wall inspired the audience at QlikTech’s annual meeting in January. Phil told his story. But his story wasn’t about him. It was about the orphans and vulnerable young people that his charity helps in Africa. It was about the people that do the helping and about the people that raise the money to help. The 1,100 attendees at that meeting were compelled to action.
Phil’s story had the three essential elements of compelling communication:
· A platform for change that resonated with the crowd.
· A vision of a brighter future to which everyone related.
· A call to action that people accepted.

TFI New Media Fund | The TFI New Media Fund provides funding and support to non-fiction, social issue media projects which go beyond traditional screens

TFI New Media Fund | The TFI New Media Fund provides funding and support to non-fiction, social issue media projects which go beyond traditional screens | Transmedia Spain |
The TFI New Media Fund provides funding and support to non-fiction, social issue media projects which go beyond traditional screens – integrating film with content across media platforms, from video games and mobile apps to social networks and interactive websites. We’re looking for projects that activate audiences around issues of contemporary social justice and equality around the world and demonstrate the power of cross-platform storytelling and dynamic audience engagement.

Four to eight non-fiction projects will be accepted, each receiving $50,000 to $100,000 in funding. The projects must present a non-fiction story focused on social issues and include an integrated cross-platform or new media component designed to engage and activate audiences in imaginative ways. The fund will include peer support and expert mentorship for producers. Producers from the U.S. and internationally are invited to apply.

Google Launches Ingress, a Worldwide Mobile Alternate Reality Game

What’s the wackiest thing you can imagine Google launching? How about a game to fight for control of the minds of everyone on earth?
Or maybe that’s not so wacky.
Meet Ingress - Google Launches Ingress, a Worldwide Mobile Alternate Reality Game - -, a new free mobile app and alternate reality game made by Google launching today (on Android first, available as soon as it makes it through the Google Play release process).
Ingress is a project of former Google director of geo John Hanke and his Niantic Labs, a start-up team wholly inside of Google.
“This grew out of us thinking about notions of ubiquitous computing,” Hanke told this week. “The device melts away.”
Ingress also aims to get people out in the physical world, both for physical activity and to see their surroundings in a new way.
Users can generate virtual energy needed to play the game by picking up units of “XM,” which are collected by traveling walking paths, like a real-world version of Pac-Man. Then they spend the energy going on missions around the world to “portals,” which are virtually associated with public art, libraries and other widely accessible places.

Post 4 In Progress

Answering a question about the future is no easy task due to the complexities of the present times that we live in. The future of convergence can only be left up to new innovations in the field of media technology. Also, the world of convergence is left to the big players in media and also society, since they have the final say throughout all. It is up to media producers to direct and nudge convergence, and up to society to either accept it or demand it in different forms/fashions.
Technology and storytelling have a very unique intersection, in that, as technology gets more advanced definitive, the ways in which we tell stories change as well. It is imperative that technology be used to tell stories, because without technology, we would have no way of understanding the past times before us. Even before the most simple innovations before scribes, before the printing press, stories played a crucial role in shaping the magnificent beings that we are. Technology provides platforms in which people can tell their stories, and get their message out to huge audiences, as Barack Obama did throughout both of his presidential campaigns.
We can approach the future with our knowledge of past and contemporary experiences with integrity, demanding sophistication and throwing away simplistic ideas of the past. As consumers, we are increasingly demanding faster, more innovative, more advanced methods of communication, and that letting the producers of boring, simple, slow media fall to the wayside.. Because of this, we can expect for the innovators, big thinkers, and hard workers to rise to the top. Independent media outlets who don’t have as many resources as the huge conglomerates will also notice the change in consumers, and use feedback to give consumers what they want, instead of just putting out media that they think consumers want.
As consumers, we should be thinking about how we can play a bigger role in giving our feedback to the senders. Feedback can play a tremendous role in changing the culture that currently exists. The information that we can give to the producers of media can absolutely change the media that we receive in the future. We have been in the game, but the role we have played has been simply of consuming media. Thanks to the powers of technology, we can effectively give indirect feedback to media creators through sites like Facebook and Youtube. If I watch a trailer for a movie, and I seem to not like it, I can simply write a comment under that video, giving constructive criticism to the video. The producers of that video can collectively use information such as my comment, along with others to direct attention to areas that people feel could have been produced better.

Post 4
What is the future of convergence you ask?  I can't give an exact answer to that but I do know that convergence will continue to grow.  Technology will continue to progress and companies will find out better ways to reach out to consumers across different markets.  I believe that we'll see flying cars by 2020 and maybe robots in peoples homes. Classroom learning will also be state of the art.  We already see this happening with the inclusion of Smart Boards and projectors in classrooms.

We can approach the future more preparedly.  I say this because based on what we know now about media convergence can be used as an asset.  For example we know that transmedia is more prevalent than multimedia.  Transmedia reaches consumers on different markets.  Multimedia uses the web as the only means to reach out to consumers. 

We should be thinking about new technology methods and platforms that can be used.  We all know that technology gets quickly outdated.  There's always something new.  It appears now that the future of technology specifically gaming is with the progression of tablets.  In an article by Fortune Kevin Chow states video gaming consoles will not disappear after the next generation but after a few years console gaming will turn into tablet gaming. See article from Fortune here .
Of course we can get in the game. All it takes is being proactive.  Be creative, take chances, don't be afraid of failure.  Today Hashem Bajwa really inspired me to start thinking about projects and being open to new ideas in technology.  

Post 4 - The Future of Convergence


The Future of media convergence will be, in my opinion, much like what we see today. What else could be possible converged?! Maybe as new inventions come about the convergence of media will transform, but it's hard to say where exactly the future of converging media relies. 

Technology is a format used to tell a story. YouTube tells stories, Blogs tell stories, Facebook and Twitter tell stories. People use technology to express what is happening in their lives or how they are feeling.

We can approach the future in a schematic manner based on our knowledge of the past and our contemporary experiences. From just thirty years ago until today we can see huge changes in technology and it is by those extreme changes that we can predict even greater, newer inventions. 

For example, the idea of Game Theory is definitely something we can expect to see in many classrooms. Media convergence is now becoming a way of education. No longer is media a form of entertainment but a tool. It isn't only the inventions of media that will be new to us, but also it's uses. 

Take for instance this video that instructs professors on how to use YouTube in the classroom. This is what we will be seeing a lot more in the future - the convergence of media and education.  

We can't prepare much for what the future will bring when dealing with media. We simply have to prepare ourselves to learn the new tools of the trade as they are discovered. M.I.T, a university known for it's advanced studies of technology, even has an article on how to use media in the classroom. This idea of an old dog learning new tricks is and will be very relevant to us in the future. 

We should also be thinking about contributing to a newer age of media whether investing in a new media technology financially or with our thoughts. As an advancing generation, we should consider using technology for greater educational purposes. A lot of classes and lectures are still antiquated and are set in the format of typical, 19th century schemes. Yet, with all this fountain of technology the education system should too advance in its teaching methods.

The Future of Convergence

          Most people would probably argue that social media is the epitome of convergence. And while social media is proficient at exploring both multimedia and transmedia, I feel as though the more social media progresses, the dumber our society will become.

          Take, for example, politics – specifically, the Obama campaign. As we discussed in class, back in 2008, the Obama administration utilized multiple facets of social media as part of its campaign strategy, in order to appeal to a younger and wider demographic. Clearly, the strategy was a success, because a senator of hardly three years was able to convey his messages of “hope” and “change” to millions of new receptors online that he would have otherwise never been able to reach.

          But as more and more people relied on a tweet or a Facebook status to gather bits and pieces of information, less and less people took the time to thoroughly read articles about the election and truly educate themselves. So while social media allows for second-to-second information and the widest array of “news” the world has yet to see, are we actually learning?

          I believe the true future of convergence with regards to education lies in the form of video games. Though the creation of this type of gaming dates back to the 1980’s with Atari as the first home-style console system, rendering it a fairly old concept, the last two+ decades have been spent perfecting both the online and at-home gaming world.

          Originally designed as either single or multiplayer, these interactive games were no more advanced than to allow a tiny dot to bounce from one virtual racket to the next in a simulated version of tennis or ping-pong. As technology advanced, games like Galaga and Pac Man were developed. These games incorporated a motive that players needed to feel in order to successfully win. In both games, obstacles in the forms of tiny virtual enemies were set into place that brought with it a greater challenge, but also in it, a greater sense of victory.

        According to game designer and New York Times Bestselling author, Jane McGonigal, whose lecture on TED Talk very much inspired me, “gaming can make a better world,” and in her opinion, is the resolution for the future. Famous for her lectures on gaming and how it can save the world, McGonigal has created video games based on real-life circumstances and possibilities, and challenges players to use their personal skills to complete the tasks given. McGonigal, who thinks the biggest misconception about video games is that they are a waste of time, argues that these interactive games help to channel social and leadership skills, teamwork, and helps to create a level of self-confidence for even the shyest and most introverted of gamers, restoring assurance in their own ability to achieve what they set their minds to.

        “My goal for the next decade is to try to make it as easy to save the world in real life as it is to save the world in online games,” says McGonigal. Worldwide, 3 billion hours a week are dedicated to gaming. McGonigal’s intention is not to redirect these hours, but to apply life lessons where people are going most often: online. “If we want to solve problems like hunger, poverty, climate change, global conflict, obesity, I believe that we need to aspire to play games online for at least 21 billion hours a week by the end of the next decade.”

        McGonigal’s research at the Institute of the Future points to a greater feeling of accomplishment in the gaming world, a sense that far surpasses that of real life. Her plan is to continue creating games that bring real-world obstacles into the gaming world, with the hopes that these gamers, after achieving the “epic win,” will have confirmation that they are well-equipped to handle real issues and tasks.

        It is a new platform for learning, and McGonigal isn’t the only one in support of it.

        Microsoft’s XBOX has made its own contribution to the gaming-based classroom in the form of “Kinect,” a motion-controlled accessory to the console. “But why use it in the classroom?” asks According to the article “Kinect in the Classroom,” written by Andrew Miller on the organization’s website, “there is a great opportunity to use the Kinect in the classroom to not only meet specific learning goals, but engage in research-based practices for learning,” (

         Below is a link to the website that features a video on “Kinect Math,” and how it allows students in classrooms to manipulate graphs, variables, etc. The video is located towards the end of the article:

         The world has been changing since its inception, but the last century’s advances are far greater than all previous centuries combined. In a world that is growing and changing at an exponential rate, all educators can do to successfully teach each group of new students is to also change with the times, and learn to adapt to a new world. Right now, that world is gaming.

Post #4-In Progress

The future of convergance is one where you'll see social media taking more of a role in how media will be made and published. The signs are already there. The website Kickstarter is the best example of this. The gist of Kickstarter is that a person posts their idea for a project on the site and asks for the public for donations with the hope of making a pre-determined goal to get their project off the ground. This method is now even closing the gap between the gatekeeper and the audience, essentially making the audience, with their donations, gatekeepers themselves.

I think that the way that the way in which technology is getting more interwoven in the process of storytelling is a plus for the fact that with the advent of smartphones and wireless technology, anyone can now be a storyteller, producer whatever you want to call it. I'm sitting on the train right now on my iPhone trying to finish this post, which wouldn't be possible without people like Steve Jobs who came up with the iPhone.

What I foresee happening with the idea of media convergence. is that the model that Kickstarter started on a grand scale. Gone would be the days where the audience en mass simply taking whatever was made for them and liking. Through YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms, any member of the public will now have influence of every step of the creative process and beyond as well.

What people have to consider is not only new and better ways to use all of the various media technologies currently in vogue to create and share media but also come up with whole new media technology and outlets. Without the constant cycle of "out with the old and in with the new", for example Facebook leapfrogging MySpace, the message becomes stagnant.

Post #4 Currently Happening

             Convergence is something inevitable. While it can be seen as an art to some, it’s a business. With the advent of new technologies everyday convergence is able to tell its story through many platforms. Henry Jenkins says that an economic backing keeps convergence culture running. He says that “Media industries are embracing convergence for a number of reasons: convergence…exploit the advantages of media conglomerates, because convergence creates multiple ways of selling loyalty…”(254).
Current TV logo

Post #4: Future of Congervence

The future of convergence will increase number of participations with advanced technologies. The society will have more accessibility with different types of mass media. It will no longer be just producers selling to consumers. Consumers will allow to produce and share with other consumers through different platforms.

As Jenkins suggests, parents and teachers use media literacy education to teach young children. Learning how to read and write, memorizing multipulcation table, and solving math problems are important. But rather, children will learn and understand faster through digital games. Games are fun to play, and that's the best way for children to learn. Playing digital games help the children learn the material and teamwork, and feel the satisfaction when they win the game. Jenkins suggests, "Parents, for example, receive plenty of advice on whether they should allow their kids to have a television set in their room or how many hours a week they should allow their kids to consume media. Yet, they receive almost no advice on how they can help their kids build a meaningful relationship with media," (270). I agree because children learn faster when they enjoy or feel satisfaction. Older generations have to understand that games are not bad influence, rather be more active.

The future of convergence culture also affects the fan culture. Today, internet has allowed the public to access and to interact with different users. Now, they are on the spotlight. They can represent their identity and spread their ideologies for free. People will upload videos on Youtube and upload parody videos that react directly to the media. Fan fiction like Wikipedia also has free access to publish facts on almost any terms. Jenkins discusses, "Individual contributions do not have to be neutral; participants simply have to agree to disagree, and, indeed, many fans come to value the sheer diversity of versions of the same characters and situations," (266). The more people participate and respond, the more different stories we will see and expand our visions. That's why the participators play more often with popular culture because it's more fun and interesting than serious matters.

The intersection of technology and storytelling will continue as they support each other. Without stories, there's no use of technology; without technology, stories can not be told to mass audiences. In the future, technology will be even more advanced than what we have right now. As for now, we have limitation to which stories can be told in certain areas. In the future, there will not be any limitations and able to tell any kind of stories in every possible mass media or transmedia.

One of the major conflicts we will face as convergence culture grow is that we will lose physical interaction and communication. Just like Sherry Turkle is arguing that we are "alone together." We will no longer be physically facing each other and depend more on new, advanced technologies. This issue is already brought up today but it will become more serious issue in our future. Media culture is very helpful for us to learn and develop. But as human being, we should not forget the importance of nature.

What Does the Convergence World Hold for Us ?

The future, something that we all look up to and constantly try to imagine what is going to be like holds an endless amount of possibilities. We might picture this planet decades from now as a Dystopian world completely ruined because of humans or perhaps a better place, a Utopian world, in which technology and society would have fused to make this the perfect place to live. Still, there is no one that knows exactly how it's going to be but our expectations do give us an overview.

A Dystopian world destroyed by humans.
World of the Future
A Utopian world, the ideal place to live.

Without a doubt, the future would be dominated by technology. Each year, many new technological inventions come out that change the way we live and interact. However, we must not underestimate technology because it is the most influential factor that will determine the future of mankind. Convergence which is part of this whole technological movement is what will ultimately decide how we consume media in the future. It is 2012 and so far we have come across so many inventions that were not even expected 10 years ago. With technology growing so fast in the future we might only need to use one device for everything that we do.

The world cultures that we know of today are also going to be significantly affected. If right now with social sites such as Facebook people from all over the world stay connected, how is social interaction in the future going to be? I personally believe that there is going to be a universal culture where we all share something in common and this is going to be possible because of technological advancements. Many of today's typical social issues, such as racism, are going to disappear because they are no longer going to be relevant in our lives. Just like technology converges, society will also go through that same phase.

Thanks to social sites world cultures will peacefully collide. 
With technology, there is so much potential to make every aspect of this world a safer, healthier, and more peaceful place to live in. Technology has no boundaries, it can continue to spread without any problems which is an advantage that nothing else has. In an article titled, "Using Technology to Improve Society," the author, Glenda Cooper, makes a lot of great points about technology helping out the modern world in solving its problems. Cooper says, "Cutting the cost of looking after older people by a fifth. Bringing down violent crime outside pubs and bars by a third. Being able to diagnose diseases at patients' bedsides just by having them breathe into a machine. These are all ways that smart cities in Britain are transforming the lives of ordinary citizens." As it is displayed here, not only one, but many social issues can be resolved with the help of technological devices that are currently helping this world from certain decay. Just like technology can save us from misery, it can also bring destruction as we have seen in the past. Conflicts such as the one that happened in the middle east a couple of months ago because of a video that offended muslims or as we experience today with cyberbullying happening everywhere are flaws that come with media and technology that we need to fix immediately. By doing so, we can contribute to make technology a tool that instead of helping us destroy the planet it can actually provide us with support to make this a better place.

This world is not perfect, all of us human beings make mistakes on a daily basis and it is comprehensible, but with the help of technology we can improve ourselves to overcome those obstacles. We must learn how to use media properly and not cause harm to others because doing so would definitely slow our progress as a society. Even though it might sound impossible, we should try to avoid being fully dependent on technology. In order to have a balanced world, we must still use our brains to solve problems and not let technology do it all for us. We don't want to become dumber, we want to become more intelligent human beings that are capable of doing the impossible which is what the future should be all about.