Simon Nelson EIF Keynote, August2007

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The BBC’s Simon Nelson is controller of multiplatform and portfolio at BBC Vision. This talk was given at the Edinburgh Interactive Festival, August 2007.

The transcript of the speech has been posted into the comments fields of the individual slides due to technical problems.

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  • So thank you very much for listening... now to questions...<br /><br/>
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  • (1 minute Adventure Rock promo video starts playing automatically)<br /><br/>
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  • I’d like to finish with another interactive collaboration which is launching soon.

    Adventure Rock is a completely new departure for the BBC into the world of 3D environments which we have developed with Larian Studios, an independent game development company based in Belgium.

    Accessible from the CBBC website, children will be able to wander around an island discovering CBBC content. Each element of the application will promote creativity, ICT skills, positive contribution and collaboration.

    Of all the audiences for whom play is most important, it is kids who will lead the way for the BBC in this field. I took my kids to see the Blue Peter set recently and beforehand I asked them if they watched it (they’re a bit young). No was the answer but they used the website and played the games.

    Here’s a preview…<br /><br/>
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  • [video shown]

    One example of current collaboration is the forthcoming Signs of Life, an eight-part interactive experience produced with Endemol’s UK’s digital production arm Victoria Real

    Signs of Life is an occult astrological thriller tailored aimed at teenagers and available exclusively on bbc.co.uk.

    Set in the fictional English Village of Whyte, the 8-part adventure combines broadcast quality drama with casual gameplay and interactive elements. This enables the audience to delve deeper into the plot to discover more about the characters and the story.

    Each episode take around 25 minutes to complete (over 3 hours in total over the eight episodes). Aside from watching the adventure unfold, viewers can also explore episodic themes in relation to their own personalities and complete psychological tests. The more users play, the more the site learns about them, building up a unique user profile which they can then export to their social network page.

    Here’s a preview…<br /><br/>
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  • We’ve seen that playful interpretation of familiar IP can be incredibly successful both critically and commercially. My kids played this game before they watched Star Wars. Indeed, it made them interested for the first time in watching it.

    But - it relies on a creative partnership that we’d have to take to another level than we have previously

    Storytelling is a core competency of the BBC - games production is not. We therefore see potential for greater collaboration between the BBC and the interactive entertainment industry<br /><br/>
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  • Good afternoon. I’m Simon Nelson, Controller, Portfolio &amp; Multi-platform for BBC Vision - which means I oversee the strategy and commissioning for BBC Vision&apos;s multi-platform services and content. Today I’d like to talk about: the common challenges the BBC and the gaming industry are facing in reaching new audiences for our content what the BBC can learn from the games industry in terms of making its content more playful the increasing interplay between gaming and more traditional forms of storytelling (and the potential for greater collaboration between the BBC and the wider interactive entertainment industry) I’d then like to finish by showing a couple of examples of forthcoming BBC interactive propositions which contain significant elements of play What I’m not going to talk about, contrary to a lot of online speculation, is any major new moves by the BBC in the gaming space or any announcements of new initiatives. I’ve been doing this job now for just over 6 months, having spent the previous 10 years in BBC Radio &amp; music and this is actually the first speaking engagement I’ve let slip into the diary. However, it’s more to do with the fact that it’s such a fascinating topic that I agreed than because of any major announcements I want to make so I apologise in advance if that’s what you&apos;re looking for but I hope I’ll be able to offer you an interesting perspective on gaming and play from a broadcaster’s perspective.
  • Simon Nelson EIF Keynote, August2007

    1. Public Service Play in a Multi-Platform World <ul><li>Simon Nelson </li></ul><ul><li>Controller, Portfolio & Multi-Platform, BBC Vision </li></ul>
    2. Past monopolies of attention
    3.  
    4. TV Consumption as viewers age… Born in 1989 (hours per week) Source: Digital Homes Project analysis of BARB data, 1995 Q4 to 2006 Q4* (Up to 10 December 2006) Age Born in the 1960s & 1970s Born in 1985
    5. BBC loyalists?
    6. We are not alone…
    7. Games industry loyalists?
    8.  
    9.  
    10. Broadening games to play
    11. The BBC’s history in games
    12. “ At one point Britain was the most computer literate country on Earth, mainly due to the vision of the BBC, the skill of Acorn and the creators of the BBC Micro” British games programmer in an interview for “State of Play”, BBC Internal Research Project 2004 Ancient history
    13.  
    14. CDX
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    16.  
    17.  
    18. = now?
    19. Play Smashing Jaffa Orangey Bit Games
    20. Games “ Ludic Activity” Play
    21. Frisbees?!?
    22. A new approach: The playful web
    23. The obligatory Facebook mention
    24. =
    25.  
    26.  
    27.  
    28. =
    29. Games BBC-fueled “Ludic Activity” Play
    30. Games from worlds/ Worlds from games
    31. “ Narratives are the constitutions of new worlds” - Brenda Laurel
    32. “ Any IP I’m involved in, I’m thinking about the gamespace.” - Jesse Alexander (Alias/Lost/Heroes)
    33.  
    34.  
    35.  
    36.  
    37. Signs of Life
    38. Adventure Rock
    39.  
    40. Thank you <ul><li>questions... </li></ul>

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