Total transmedia

The article “le fabuleux business du transmedia storytelling” (the miraculous business of transmedia storytelling), which appeared on the fascinating Storyplaying blog, tells the story of a talk given by Jeff Gomez at a conference entitled Tools of Change for Publishing. Jeff Gomez is a well-known creative figure in the transmedia world whom we wrote about in “Le transmédia est le futur du business” (Transmedia storytelling is the future of biz).

We want to focus on the following points out from this article:

  • a “classical” definition of transmedia: “the communication of a complex message, a subject or a scenario to a mass audience via multiple media. Each part of the story is unique and underpinned by the strengths of the media. The audience is encouraged to participate and interact with the narrative”;
  • a residual commitment on the part of the audience: “the construction of genuine, high-quality storyworlds guarantees the longevity of the story, the audience makes a long-term commitment, is involved and ready to share its experience with others;
  • a financial gain resulting from the number of media used: Jeff Gomez talks of advertising revenue of $50 million being generated by Heroes 360, the online incarnation of the television series;
  • and most importantly, a new definition of the professions involved in the construction of a transmedia world: this is created by “calling on different people, coming from different environments, who work on ‘chunks’ of the story which inhabit specific media.”. Jeff Gomez refers to the notion of “transmedia producer” to describe the person who creates the connections, i.e. the gateways between the different media, and ensures the consistency of the “storyworld”.

The article “le fabuleux business du transmedia storytelling” focuses on the radical effects associated with this development which is shattering established concepts such as “the intellectual property of the story, the status of authors or filmmakers, the audiovisual market, production market, etc.”

We experienced the premises underlying this hybrid creative organization at the Transmedia Lab workshops and we are continuing to work on the formulae which lead to the creation of new transmedia worlds.

We wanted to answer the frequently asked question concerning the different skills that have to be combined within a transmedia team: what are they and how are they defined? In a recent post, Julien Aubert describes some of the new jobs that have emerged during his creative career in the ARG field. The roles of “experience designer”, “community manager”, “web designer”, guardian of the source are all defined within the transmedia context. In the near future, we shall look at how his analysis fits in with Lance Weiler’s definition of the “story architect“.

In this way, we hope to fuel a debate and prompt others to contribute their experiences!

While waiting, and because a picture is worth a thousand words, the superb diagram above, by Robert Pratten, summarizes splendidly the transmedia approach: food for thought …

* ”The whole is greater than the sum of its parts” is a quotation taken from Confucius.


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