Reinventing the Arts - NYFA Panel


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My recent talk for the New York Foundation for the Arts - about using technology to connect with audiences and build a fan base. A little bit about where things are going with transmedia and how artists might use these techniques.

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  • Need to be clear upfront - I’m only going to touch on how this can be used in your creation of works - you are the artist, and there is such a broad spectrum of “the arts” that I can’t possibly cover all the things affecting painters or dancers, or composers in technology and how they are possibly using technology. I’ll touch on these things, but I’m speaking more about how artists can use all of “this stuff” to reach a broader audience and engage them in their work.
  • yet still, films were made. Well, the first thing you have to realize is that digital has been a disruptive innovation on the field. it completely transforms everything we do. music biz example, trouble embracing the new so lose out
  • It has rolled back the tide on many bad business models and changed them fundamentally. We can now speak to one another more easily and see just how poorly a gallery is paying or a distributor, etc. Also, these behaviors (online) aren’t new - these aren’t new behaviors but what people wanted to do all along
  • we can’t operate in an analogue world anymore - the single biggest problem facing the arts is that so many people want to think that his is a cycle that will pass, that things will go back to normal, that digital is the same as analogue and we can adapt it to our existing models
  • but it’s a fundamental shift and we’re ill-fitted to the task if we try to cram digital economies into our old way of thinking
  • we’re in a whole new paradigm and business models are changing overnight in every industry.think about it, newspaper advertising and classifieds were a multi billion dollar industry and craigslist came along and tidied that up into one profitable 100 million company. the changes here will be just as profound
  • But we need to step back and look at a 50,000 ft level at what has changed Indeed the very notion of value has changed.
  • in the old world, the business was built on scarcity, but today we have ubiquity - true obviously in film and music, but also in all other arts - you are now competing with a worldwide artist base, and the entire history of the arts. And audiences who want cultural entertainment (or enlightenment, or....) can get it from many new places.
  • what matters is my attention
  • and engaging me, and keeping me engaged, is ever more valuable
  • becoming more participatory, a conversation
  • we’ve all heard of social networking, of course, and the thousands if not millions of social networks
  • here’s an example of a filmmaker using it to their advantage - building community. note how they make it easy for people to take the content to other websites and blogs through widgets, etc. Notice how Vanishing of the Bees has a blog, a petition, twitter, facebook, etc. and a widget to take the content elsewhere.
  • the latest twitter stats
  • Importance of twitter (today) Fastest growing 1382% increase in one year, 42% over 35.
  • Zoe Keating has used it to amass an audience of over 1 million followers, and she now has a self-sustaining career. Notice here she is replying/thanking a fan who cued her in on how to watch some media. She’s not just working a one way street, she’s communicating with her audience.
  • zoe has built a fan base, that’s in constant dialogue with her. Because this should be your ultimate goal - not to think of building an audience for just one project, but for you, your career - people who will continue to follow you, be in dialogue with you and support your career.
  • Filmmakers are doing it on their own. Iron Sky example
  • Join community in multiple places, now have 28K fans, and the movie isn’t even shot yet
  • also have people requesting the film through a Google Map mashup, and have over 19K requests before the movie is shot.
  • and now you can too with crowdcontrols
  • We’re also seeing people turning the audiences into their funders
  • Patronage – radiohead model, give it away but can donate to get more. Jill Sobule got her fans to donate to make her album - 95K
  • Here’s a blow-up of what you got for your donation
  • here’s a recent example of filmmakers doing this - cosmonaut example - one of the more clever uses of crowd-funding
  • cosmonaut example - here’s some of their merchandise, gives a broad range for support
  • Age of Stupid did this as well to much success and made a guide to it that anyone can download
  • Kickstarter examples
  • a gallery using it
  • Now, this is the next logical step - letting people actually be involved in the creation of new work
  • Back to Iron Sky - they are assigning tasks, for participatory filmmaking, and have over 1500 people helping with that - participatory means creation as well
  • Lest you think this is a weird Finnish thing - look at MassAnimation’s Live Music - 58K animators fro 101 countries made a join animated film
  • In B Flat - a collaborative, music/spoken word project - Darren Solomon
  • And they want to mix it up, mash it together and sample it and share it like crazy
  • Make their own versions, commenting on it and trade those as well
  • Rip – a film on remix culture (and girltalk) encourages mash-up and remixing
  • thruyou
  • it has to be convenient, immediate, because when I have things competing for my attention, I will move on. This means, people expect multi-platform
  • They want it when they want it, from whatever portal they like and on whatever device they like, and they want it yesterday
    They want to share it virally with their friends
  • and they may even still buy the film on a DVD or other method - but they want access to all of these platforms. Here’s one filmmaker who is using that to his advantage - Cory McAbee with Stingray Sam - offering easy ways to get it in multiple formats and with value added.
  • They’ll pay for limited editions, from the artist, with cool add-ons
  • and get it on mobile- one of the biggest trends recently and in coming years, which I’m not devoting enough time to today.
  • multiple access points, transmedia -
  • Cross media allows them to become active participants in multiple parts of the story. It allows them to delve deeper into the experience if they so choose, or access it from their preferred medium. The idea is to expand the story line into multiple media. The Matrix is the most famous recent example
  • of course, Star Wars was doing it before
  • and their fans are legion, and very involved with every aspect of the story
  • Definitions of transmedia and examples/things to think about
  • More to think about and experts.
  • Thomas Allen Harris and Through a Lens Darkly
  • Thomas Allen Harris and Through a Lens Darkly
  • we like to say it’s all about content, but it’s really all about context - it’s about the context built around the content, the experiences I can share, the way it is placed, etc
  • There’s an old marketing theory that says people don’t go to store to buy a ¼” drill, but because they want a ¼” hole. don’t go to the store to buy a hammer. They go there because they want to hang a picture, to get something done, and the hammer just helps them do it.
  • I love seeing a movie in a theater, but let’s face it – that was a tool for Hollywood to pack as many people into one space and make money off their desire to escape. It was a tool to have a fun night out, but it was only one tool.
  • I love seeing a movie in a theater, but let’s face it – that was a tool for Hollywood to pack as many people into one space and make money off their desire to escape. It was a tool to have a fun night out, but it was only one tool.
  • these aren’t new behaviors but what people wanted to do all along
    We now have new tools, and we can’t fight it, but need to embrace them to our benefit. The audience wants to build something – they can get your hammer for free, or you can give them a reason to buy it. They also want to interact with you in new ways, so use these tools to your advantage. People can collect around your film, watch it and interact with it in new ways now. And we have new ways of reaching them and engaging them.
  • what’s next?
  • how to contact me
  • Reinventing the Arts - NYFA Panel

    1. 1. Reinventing the Arts through Technology: A NYFA Presentation Brian Newman @bnewman01
    2. 2. 2 Disruptive Innovation Disruptive technology and disruptive innovation are terms used in business and technology literature to describe innovations that improve a product or service in ways that the market does not expect, typically by being lower priced or designed for a different set of consumers. Clayton Christensen via Wikipedia
    3. 3. It’s not until the tide goes out until you see who’s wearing the swim trunks - Warren Buffett
    4. 4. 7 Value has changed.
    5. 5. 8 Old World Value: Scarcity New World Value: Overabundance
    6. 6. 9 Attention Economy
    7. 7. 10 Engagement
    8. 8. 11 Participatory Culture A Conversation
    9. 9. Langworthy & Henein Vanishing of the Bees
    10. 10. Twitter Stats (via Twitter) •105,779,710 registered users •1,500% growth over the last three years •300,000 new sign-ups per day •60% of new accounts were from outside the U.S. •600 million search queries per day •A NY Times story gets tweeted every 4 seconds
    11. 11. Usage by Age Group US Growth Twitter
    12. 12. Zoe Keating @ZoeCello 1.38 million followers on Twitter
    13. 13. 17 Building Community Friends & Fans
    14. 14.
    15. 15.
    16. 16.
    17. 17.
    18. 18. CrowdSourcing Turning Community into Funders
    19. 19. • $10 - Unpolished Rock (but with potential) Level: A free digital download of the album, when it's released. • $25 - Polished Rock Level: An advance copy of the CD. Weeks before the masses. • $2,500 - Emerald Level: Mentioned as an executive producer of the album -- whoop- di-doo! • $5,000 - Diamond Level: I will come and do a house concert for you. Invite your friends, serve some drinks, bring me out and I sing. Actually, this level is a smart choice economically. I've played many house concerts where the host has charged his guests and made his money back. I'd go for this if I were you. • $10,000 - Weapons-Grade Plutonium Level: You get to come and sing on my CD. Don't worry if you can't sing - we can fix that on our end. Also, you can always play the cowbell. Details from Jill’s Next Record website
    20. 20.
    21. 21.
    22. 22. TheAgeofStupid.Net
    23. 23.
    24. 24.
    25. 25. 30 CrowdSourcing 2: Turning Community into Collaborators
    26. 26.
    27. 27.
    28. 28.
    29. 29. 34 Remix Culture Mash-Ups and Sampling
    30. 30. Gaylor: RIP! A Remix Manifesto
    31. 31. Kuitman: Thru-You
    32. 32. 38 Convenience & Immediacy Immediacy
    33. 33. Multi-Platform Agnostic, Viral & Mobile
    34. 34. McAbee: Stingray Sam
    35. 35. Sally Potter’s Rage First Movie Premiering Day/Date at a Festival and on Mobile
    36. 36. 43 Multiple Access Points
    37. 37. Transmedia What it is: Types/examples: Develop the story across multiple entry points Events Multi-platform Games/ARG Audience can become immersed in experience Interactive components Deep audience engagement Graphic Novels Encourages participatory audiences Online & viral content Each element a distinctive experience Mobile Story flows & builds rev streams Think Outside the norms - experiences
    38. 38. Transmedia Quick thoughts: Some Experts: Keep a mind towards audience dev. components from the beginning Christy Dena Think beyond marketing Stephen Dinehart (coined) It’s not all about the film - extend the experience Jeff Gomez Think about impact & social change Henry Jenkins Not just games.... events, gallery shows, etc. Mike Monello Some projects may not need to be a film John Threat ...or can become one if successful Lance Weiler Transmedia can be simple Many more...
    39. 39. Thomas Allen Harris: Through a Lens Darkly
    40. 40. Push Push Theater Company
    41. 41. Creating context is more important than creating content. The greatest creative and business opportunities are everything around the content Taylor Davidson
    42. 42. Image Courtesy: Yair Haklai - WikiMedia (CC Attribution)
    43. 43. The best way to predict the future is to invent it Alan Kay
    44. 44. Blog: Twitter: @Bnewman01