Monday, March 26, 2007

Cross country for cross-media (3)

The first paper that was presented at CMID07 was by Christy Dena, an Australian consultant who works in the field of Media and Entertainment and has a blog named (surprise, surprise) Cross-media I had heard of her and I had seen links in the Dutch cross-media blogs, but I had never met her before.

She has a lot to tell about cross-media and can go from a helicopter view to details. She sports a schema about cross-media and entertainment, which covers the five angles: content, marketing, business, audiences and technology. For each angle she works out the points to be considered. At the conference she worked out the content angle with examples in a fascinating way.

There are five ways to prepare content for cross-media. By repurposing content, one can republish the same content on each platform e.g. Someone comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town. A second way of preparing content for cross-media is by ttechnical Adaptation, whereby the content is edited and redesigned according to the affordances and limitations of each platform. Another way is art form adaptation by remaking a message to fit the tropes of a particular artistic genre. An example of this is the Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy, which has been moved from radio play to book to computer game and mobile (I still have the Commodore 64 version in its original wrapping, including a book). Another form is augmenting: providing additional, complementary & contradictory information in different platforms like in MTV’s Laguna Beach, where the world depicted in the TV series is augmented with Second Life. Stretching is the last way. Transmedia series contain self-contained episodes like in Homicide: Life on the Street, a police series whereby the TV series stops with a cliff hanger, while the investigation continues and is closed on internet; in the next TV installment a new case is opened. A transmedia serial will have dependent episodes, including, discussions with other participants, webcam video sessions and telephone voicemail.

And just like she drills in the content, she also drills in the other aspects. The model is very applicable in entertainment, but could also be used for interactive marketing.

The content section did remind me of Christian Fonnesbech, CEO of the Danish company Congin, who coined the method of dramatic content engineering. He produced years ago the internet soap Anders og Henrietta as an interactive marketing tool for a bank.

But the main contribution of Christa is that she looks from five angles to a cross-media project, from content creation to audiences and is able to lay out a strategy. The way she marries content to technology, but also content to audiences and technology to audiences is done very profoundly.

It was great to meet Christy and team up with her for somne days. She will be in The Netherlands for a few days and will present a guest-lecture at the HNN in Leeuwarden on Wednesday, March 28, 2007.

Blog Posting Number: 704

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