Tales of Our Tomorrows: Transmedia Storytelling and Communicating About the Future

by Peter von Stackelberg & Ruth Eira Jones

ABSTRACT

Foresight professionals and the futures field as a whole faces a series of challenges in communicating about the future. Simply presenting data and having a “rational” discussion is not enough to shape perceptions about the future and move people to action. The rapid evolution of digital media technology and the emergence of transmedia storytelling present foresight professionals with a powerful new approach for communicating about the future. Transmedia storytelling is the use of multiple media – graphic novels, video clips on YouTube, blogs, Twitter, and enhanced e-books, for example – to tell one or more related stories set within a common storyworld. This article outlines some of the key principles of transmedia storytelling in order to provide a basic framework that foresight professionals can use when designing transmedia projects.

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