Tuesday, April 11, 2006

A book on cross-media... in Italian

Last Saturday I received the book Fare cross-media, written by Max Giovagnoli in Italian. It is a book on the theory and technology of integrated communication and media, published by Dino Audiono Editore.

Max and I got in touch by accident. Max reacted to the general e-mail for information on the ACTeN project, which has been completed since September 2004. He indicated that ACTeN papers had been of importance to him as a professor at the University of Malta in Rome, where he is teaching at the LINK campus. It was a surprise for him to get into contact with me as he knew me from my ACTeN paper on cross-media.

Max had another life before his academic career. He was the editor-in-chief (caporedattore) of Grande Fratello (Big Brother). He is looking back at the project with some humour as he characterises the Italian version of Big Brother as the modern Decamerone, after the tales of Giovanni Boccacio. In these tales seven young man and three ladies have to leave the city due to the pest. They sit together and tell each other 100 stories about love in 10 days.

Once he had started his academic career, he started to delve into cross-media as a topic. He started to document himself and wrote a book on cross-media. The titles of his chapters are interesting:
- Thinking about cross-media;
- Structuring cross-media;
- Imagining with cross-media;
- Arousing emotions with cross-media;
- Telling stories with cross-media;
- Audience and cross-media.
- Essence of cross-media.
The book contains 160 pages, illustrations and many footnotes. It is remarkable how many references are made to ACTeN papers. Max closes the book with thanks to people that have inspired him. Besides Italian people he mentions Derrick Kerckhove of Toronto University and Monique de Haas of the Dutch company Dondersteen Media. There is also a line of thanks with my name (misspelled as usual) thanking me “per il contributo ai primi passi di questo lavoro”, which I freely translate to “his contribution to the initial passion to work on this question.”

It is interesting to see that Max Giovagnoli worked on this book and used all the ACTeN documentation, while we in the project had no idea who was benefiting from the papers.

Presently I am concerning myself with the question of Cross-media: what’s Next. There are many workshops and conferences concerning themselves with cross-media from one of various points of vision: print, broadcast, (mobile) telephony internet or as multiple media, multi modal, multi channel. It is rather funny to see that everyone is now getting excited about cross-media. But you can also see it from a historic point of view. Online and particularly internet has been coming for years. All the attention was on the online aspect of it. It is only now that internet is embedded into the existing media and that a message is carried across various media.

Talking about cross-media: my friend Damien Marchi and the Streampower team have won the iEmmy Award in Cannes for their interactive, participatory, daily, live CULT tv-show on the French TV station France5. Congratulations


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