DIGITAL MEDIA FROM THE INSIDE OUT: My focus is digital content -- production, distribution, collaboration, innovation, creativity. Some posts have appeared across the web (HuffPo, Tribeca's Future of Film, The Wrap, MIPblog, etc.). To receive these posts regularly via email, sign up for my newsletter here.

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'Sanditon' - A Town Built by Digital Immigrants

Welcome to Sanditon”, the highly anticipated sequel to the hit web series “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries” launched on the web this week with a new, interactive twist: fans can create their own characters who interact directly with the storyline, thanks to the Theatrics collaborative storytelling platform. More than 100 Personas were created on Sanditon’s Theatrics site in the first 24 hours after launch, thanks to the huge and very involved fan base of the Bennet series.

Join the show to create your own Persona and learn more about how the Theatrics platform is helping this team of 21st Century storytellers bring their fans into their story world. The story’s home page is here. Pemberley Digital, the company producing both projects, selected LLC to provide a new component to their newest transmedia experience, complementing story and interaction on popular web platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr.

Key to the Sanditon strategy is the formulation of their Theatrics site’s value for audience engagement. The overall storyline calls for residents of the town of Sanditon to “ beta test” a new type of online video software called Domino. The Theatrics site is where that “test” is being conducted, allowing fans to create their own characters and interact directly with the storyline in a completely new interactive experience.

Over the next four months the Sanditon content creators will use Theatrics tools to:

  • manage the characters created by the fans
  • download fan videos to share socially and for compilation edits
  • send “Calls to Action” to accounts that have created personas, so they can help drive the story forward
  • connect the Theatrics experience to the other social platforms where the story is also unfolding in other forms

If you have questions about how to use for your project during this beta test period, please feel free to contact me at 

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• Your Virtual Self: Who Owns it and What’s it Worth?

Each one of us generates vast amounts of data – email, phone calls, social networking, photos, text messages, videos, browsing, purchasing and more.

Our data create a new form of identity, what you might call a Virtual Self – a concept that will determine the future of the web.

This virtual identity, and all of the bits of data that comprise it, has become an incredibly valuable form of currency – it’s the way the web exchanges value.

Companies aggregate your data in order to deliver advertising, commerce, content, and services to you – worth billions of dollars.

But who owns this data? Who owns your Virtual Self?

Right now, the identity wars are dominated by Facebook, Twitter, and Google – firms that have become what Mashable calls “large-scale consumer identity providers (a.k.a. IdP’s).”

“There’s a great burden placed on identity providers to police the media companies that connect with their users,” Robyn Peterson writes in a recent post. “There’s also a great burden on media companies to fulfill and not violate the trust of their end-users, and to behave appropriately.”

Right now, we’re all complicit in the creation of this Virtual Self -- we use our Facebook or Twitter account to sign in to other websites, which in turn use the components of your identity to construct their content.

We do it willingly. In exchange for data about our friends, locations, interests, behavior, and preferences, we get content served to us that seems eerily relevant -- courtesy of the companies whose algorithms process the bits of our virtual identities.

Of course we’ve seen flare-ups over privacy and identity, but they haven’t changed the trend for consumers to share our Virtual Self, which is getting pretty comprehensive.

Own Your Own Data

“It represents our actions, interests, intentions, communications, relationships, locations, behaviors, and creative and consumptive efforts,” according to The Locker Project, a non-profit start-up unveiled last week as part of a set of initiatives aimed at allowing people to have “ownership over their personal data and clear control over how it’s protected and shared.”

I love their slogan: “Data is Life. Own Yours.”

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