Transmedia and the new world order

Inanimate Alice

Inan­i­mate Alice–a bril­liant edu­ca­tion­al trans­me­dia project

What I learned from work­ing this blog over the last cou­ple of months is that the future of media enter­tain­ment is cross-platform–“transmedia,” if you will.

What this knowl­edge has led me to believe is that the tran­si­tion into new media mod­els could very well change a whole lot about what and who we per­ceive are impor­tant and influ­en­tial in the world. Here’s what I mean:

  1. Trans­me­dia is not being led by Amer­i­cans (gasp!). Con­tent cre­ators from Aus­tralia, Ger­many, France… well, from every­where, actu­al­ly, are ahead of the game from what I’ve seen. Why is this? 
    In part, I think that this is because oth­er nations are being proac­tive and fund­ing trans­me­dia projects that ben­e­fit their soci­eties. I also think that it’s because the aver­age Amer­i­can is too busy try­ing to plan for prob­lems and prof­its to real­ly take the leap toward inno­v­a­tive change and grab for the brass ring. Are there good Amer­i­can offer­ings? Of course, but they are not as numer­ous as one might expect.
  2. With­in Amer­i­ca, the peo­ple you are expect­ing aren’t the ones who are lead­ing this change. For exam­ple: Ball State Uni­ver­si­ty keeps com­ing up high on my search pages. I’ve heard of them (I grew up in Indi­ana, and my sis­ter did a sum­mer camp there), but I don’t know any­one else who has. But this (seem­ing­ly) incon­se­quen­tial uni­ver­si­ty jumped on the trans­me­dia band­wag­on ear­ly, and pref­er­en­tial attach­ment dic­tates that ear­ly is good–Ball State is four google result pages (in oth­er words, light years) above the USC film school on the search I ran.
  3. Hol­ly­wood isn’t cap­i­tal­iz­ing on trans­me­dia the way it could be. They have mon­ey to put into these projects, and some stu­dios are mak­ing a token effort, but the big names aren’t giv­ing us com­plete expe­ri­ences by “includ­ing all the ingre­di­ents. ” In fact, Hol­ly­wood is active­ly work­ing against this trend, and is going to suf­fer for it.
Where am I going with this? Frankly, I’m not sure. I think that that is the point, though. None of us knows for sure how this ride is going to end, but those who got on ear­ly got the best hors­es.
Luck­i­ly, there’s not only one brass ring on this round­about…

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