Ramblings & ephemera

New communication, new art forms

From Jim Hanas’ “The Story Doesn’t Care: An Interview with Sean Stewart“:

I think that every means of communication carries within itself the potential for a form of art. Once the printing press was built, novels were going to happen. It took the novel a little while to figure out exactly what it was going to be, but once the press was there, something was going to occur. Once motion picture cameras were around, the movies—in some format or another—were going to happen.

I modestly or immodestly think that [developers of alternate reality games] got some things fundamentally right about the way the web and the internet want to tell stories in a way that not everyone had gotten quite when we lucked into it. What people do on the web is they look for things and they gossip. We found a way of storytelling that has a lot to do with looking for things and gossiping about them. …

Suspension of disbelief is a much more fragile creation in the kinds of campaigns we’re doing right now than it is in novels, where everyone has taken the last two hundred years to agree on a set of rules about how you understand what’s happening in a book. That hasn’t happened here. Right now, this is at an unbelievably fluid and dynamic stage—a whole bunch of things that have been figured out in other art forms, we’re working them out on the fly.

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