Some additional definitions and resources re: Transmedia Storytelling from Giovagnoli, Transmedia Storytelling

You may also want to draw from this site The Complete Guide to Transmedia Storytelling, which uses Henry Jenkins’ definition (which I gave in class) quite extensively.

a definition: “narrative forms that share the same elements (plots, characters, atmospheres… ) but that change depending on the publishing platform through which they are released (for instance, the same short film might be developed as a series or as a movie for the theater; its protagonist for a comic book series, etc… ).”

Telling stories which are distributed on multiple media is like creating a new geography of the tale and it requires the author and the audience to agree on some fixed and safe spaces for sharing, even if they can be altered to different combinations. Hence, before going on, it is important to clarify in this short introduction what the publishing and technological restrictions are, that are shared by all the different tales explained in these pages. The four cardinal points of “doing transmedia” are:

  1. Doing transmedia means to involve multiple media in a publishing project, keeping the features and the language of each one, even if they are part of a single system of integrated communication;
  2. Doing transmedia means to make the project’s contents available on different technological platforms, without causing any overlaps or interferences, while managing the story experienced by different audiences;
  3. Doing transmedia means to allow the multiple media to tell different stories but all exploring a common theme, even if it is experienced through multiple narrative perspectives;
  4. Doing transmedia means to agree to give a part of the authorship and responsibility of the tale to the audience and other storytellers in order to create a participatory and synergistic story in the experiences of the different audiences of the tale.

Thus, exploring the narrative universe of a story by using transmedia is even more like a question of experience than use, and it makes compromises and challenges necessary for both the authors and the audiences. It is the proper founding act for the tale, and an excellent opportunity to influence the homo ludens of today who are longing for new and more active roles in the process of fantasy and imagery-making. (Prof note: this is a critical step in the prototyping process – how can you imagine your new world/new tech/new usage of existing tech).

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