Storytelling Across Multiple Platforms
Al McEwen
Director of Digital WBMC
al@wbmc.tv
All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and
women merely players
~ The Bard, As You Like It
Using various media to express
and expand story worlds isn’t new.
We’ve been telling stories across
multiple platforms for...
Take religion
Literature
Events Movies Merchandise
Music Art Architecture Monuments
Web/GamesTV
Stories are told across
many different m...
All stories are connected by their
underlying ethos.
Messages are broken into discrete
pieces that are easy to communicate.
Unique features of
each media make
messages more
accessible.
Many works have been created by
groups of devoted followers.
Producer Consumer
Prosumer
In a way this follows the
contemporary understanding of
transmedia storytelling.
A transmedia story unfolds across multipl...
Some Terminology
[Narratives] have been constructed
to achieve unity. While postmodern
narratives open out into fragments and
bricolage in ...
Integrating multiple texts to
create a narrative so large that
it cannot be contained within
a single medium.
~ H. Jenkins...
A Pervasive Game is a game
that has one or more salient
features that expand the
contractual magic circle of play
socially...
Environments are the spaces in which
creative works are experienced...
Every distinct media has an
environment, but for so...
A Transmedia Narrative project
or franchise must consist of
three (or more) narrative story
lines existing within the same...
} {
Games
TV
Feature Film
Short Film
Print
Music
Websites
Social
Live
Performance
Travelling
Work
Theme Park
Stage
Set
Vir...
Fran-
chise • mulitple mono-medium projects
examples - book, film, game, internet
Project
• Multiple media products make u...
How is this relevant to
entertainment media?
The Modern Paradigm
Apples
AKA The Past
Appointment Viewing
Subscription
Ad Supported
Broadcast Centric
Marketing Budget
Audience passive
Oran...
Audience
Know your audience early in
development and design around
them. Some members will contribute
whilst others will passively ...
Consider each tier of your audience.
Prosumers
Base Users
Active Users
Will actively participate in the creation
of auxili...
Designing a Solution
1.	Find the underlying message or ethos
2.	Consider the environments in which people can
engage with your message
3.	Devel...
You may have an idea but you need
to boil it down to basics.
Try to:
1.	Find your archetype
2.	Write your OneLiner
3.	Identify themes
4.	Know your aspirational driver - Mastery, beaut...
Think of platforms and match them to
the environments.
Consider Environments
Ask:
1.	Where do I listen to music or watch TV?
2.	When do people need to be uplifted, nurtured or e...
You may have a platform in mind but
take the time to think about what
platforms best fit.
Develop Content
Look for:
1.	The media that best suits the space
2.	The media that suits the user’s constraints (time and ...
Your project is out there. Now you
must evaluate, reward and adjust.
Listen to the Audience
Listen to:
1.	What your audience is saying about your story
2.	How you can reward their input
3.	Ca...
As you use more platforms for your
message and take on new content
from communities, you
MUST stay on message.
Maintain the Message
Make sure:
1.	You don’t fracture your narrative
2.	Always repeat the previous steps when initiating n...
Social Media isn’t a broadcast
platform. Make sure you have
conversations with your audience and
reward people for partici...
Staying in Touch
Social Platforms
1.	Twitter
2.	Facebook
3.	Google+
4.	YouTube
5.	Blog Comments
6.	Newsletters
7.	Email
8....
Key Considerations
4 Key points to consider when
developing Transmedia narrative
- Vision
- Collaboration
- Engagement
- Raw Guts
~ Suzanne S...
Examples(to be discussed in the workshops)
Dark Knight ARG
AUTHENTIC in all Caps
YouTube Orchestra
Goa Hippy Tribe
Murder in Passing
Parkman Murder
Bear 71
Lizzie Bennet Diaries
Biophilia
Arcade Fire
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Storytelling Across Multiple Platforms

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A quick introduction to multiplatform storytelling with some broad examples.

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Storytelling Across Multiple Platforms

  1. 1. Storytelling Across Multiple Platforms Al McEwen Director of Digital WBMC al@wbmc.tv
  2. 2. All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players ~ The Bard, As You Like It
  3. 3. Using various media to express and expand story worlds isn’t new. We’ve been telling stories across multiple platforms for centuries.
  4. 4. Take religion
  5. 5. Literature Events Movies Merchandise Music Art Architecture Monuments Web/GamesTV Stories are told across many different media.
  6. 6. All stories are connected by their underlying ethos.
  7. 7. Messages are broken into discrete pieces that are easy to communicate.
  8. 8. Unique features of each media make messages more accessible.
  9. 9. Many works have been created by groups of devoted followers. Producer Consumer Prosumer
  10. 10. In a way this follows the contemporary understanding of transmedia storytelling. A transmedia story unfolds across multiple media platforms with each new text making a distinctive and valuable contribution to the whole. In the ideal form of transmedia storytelling, each medium does what it does best—so that a story might be introduced in a film, expanded through television, novels, and comics; its world might be explored through game play or experienced as an amusement park attraction. ~ H. Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide, 2006
  11. 11. Some Terminology
  12. 12. [Narratives] have been constructed to achieve unity. While postmodern narratives open out into fragments and bricolage in content, plot and style, distributed narratives take this further, opening up the formal and physical aspects ofthe work and spreading themselves across time, space and the network. ~ J.Walker, Distributed Narrative: Telling Strories Across Networks, 2004 Distributed Narrative
  13. 13. Integrating multiple texts to create a narrative so large that it cannot be contained within a single medium. ~ H. Jenkins, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide, 2006 Transmedia Storytelling
  14. 14. A Pervasive Game is a game that has one or more salient features that expand the contractual magic circle of play socially, spatially or temporally. ~ M. Montola, Exploring the edge of the Magic Circle: Defining Pervasive Games, circa 2009 Pervasive Games
  15. 15. Environments are the spaces in which creative works are experienced... Every distinct media has an environment, but for some creative works the environment is not incidental but constructed to be a part of the meaning-making process. ~ C. Dena, Transmedia Practice: Theorising the Practice of Expressing a Fictional World across Distinct Media and Environments, 2009 Environments
  16. 16. A Transmedia Narrative project or franchise must consist of three (or more) narrative story lines existing within the same fictional universe on any platform... Transmedia ~ APG Transmedia Guidelines, 2010
  17. 17. } { Games TV Feature Film Short Film Print Music Websites Social Live Performance Travelling Work Theme Park Stage Set Virtual Theatre Outside Inside Integrated Media Media Environments
  18. 18. Fran- chise • mulitple mono-medium projects examples - book, film, game, internet Project • Multiple media products make up one Transmedia project examples - Why So Serious (ARG for Dark Knight) 4 Approaches To Transmedia ~ Christy Dena, Pixel Lab , 2010 Concept (Native) • Designed to be transmedia from the concept stage Franchise • mulitple mono-medium projects examples - book, film, game, internet Transformation • Changing an ex- isting mono-media property into transmedia examples - The Fun Factory for Coke
  19. 19. How is this relevant to entertainment media?
  20. 20. The Modern Paradigm
  21. 21. Apples AKA The Past Appointment Viewing Subscription Ad Supported Broadcast Centric Marketing Budget Audience passive Oranges AKA The Present Video On Demand Free Content Brand Integrated Networks & Community Engagement Audience participation
  22. 22. Audience
  23. 23. Know your audience early in development and design around them. Some members will contribute whilst others will passively consume.
  24. 24. Consider each tier of your audience. Prosumers Base Users Active Users Will actively participate in the creation of auxiliary content and promote your project. Hardcore fans. Will promote your project but not be active in the creation of content. Will casually consume your project.
  25. 25. Designing a Solution
  26. 26. 1. Find the underlying message or ethos 2. Consider the environments in which people can engage with your message 3. Develop content specifically for appropriate media 4. Listen to the audience 5. Maintain a cohesive message across all platforms The List
  27. 27. You may have an idea but you need to boil it down to basics.
  28. 28. Try to: 1. Find your archetype 2. Write your OneLiner 3. Identify themes 4. Know your aspirational driver - Mastery, beauty, empowerment, belonging, spectacle Find the underlying message or ethos
  29. 29. Think of platforms and match them to the environments.
  30. 30. Consider Environments Ask: 1. Where do I listen to music or watch TV? 2. When do people need to be uplifted, nurtured or excited? 3. Is there a shared space in which people can engage? 4. Do I need to create a virtual or new space to get my message across? 5. Is my audience here?
  31. 31. You may have a platform in mind but take the time to think about what platforms best fit.
  32. 32. Develop Content Look for: 1. The media that best suits the space 2. The media that suits the user’s constraints (time and place) 3. Short form engagement 4. Longer form engagement 5. Ways to innovate by using emerging platforms 6. Ways the audience can participate
  33. 33. Your project is out there. Now you must evaluate, reward and adjust.
  34. 34. Listen to the Audience Listen to: 1. What your audience is saying about your story 2. How you can reward their input 3. Can you integrate their contributions into your project
  35. 35. As you use more platforms for your message and take on new content from communities, you MUST stay on message.
  36. 36. Maintain the Message Make sure: 1. You don’t fracture your narrative 2. Always repeat the previous steps when initiating new content 3. Use variations of your themes to retell the same message
  37. 37. Social Media isn’t a broadcast platform. Make sure you have conversations with your audience and reward people for participating.
  38. 38. Staying in Touch Social Platforms 1. Twitter 2. Facebook 3. Google+ 4. YouTube 5. Blog Comments 6. Newsletters 7. Email 8. SMS
  39. 39. Key Considerations
  40. 40. 4 Key points to consider when developing Transmedia narrative - Vision - Collaboration - Engagement - Raw Guts ~ Suzanne Stefanac - Director, American Film Institute
  41. 41. Examples(to be discussed in the workshops)
  42. 42. Dark Knight ARG
  43. 43. AUTHENTIC in all Caps
  44. 44. YouTube Orchestra
  45. 45. Goa Hippy Tribe
  46. 46. Murder in Passing
  47. 47. Parkman Murder
  48. 48. Bear 71
  49. 49. Lizzie Bennet Diaries
  50. 50. Biophilia
  51. 51. Arcade Fire

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