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Transmedia Diaries #2

A blog series I was holding back to leach the substance of how I came up with all that « stuff ». Not a transmedia work as a form of communication, but a piece of storytelling with text about the stories happening while working on the transmedia concept itself, as an indie creative researcher, in order to co-design the future. It started in December 2010 with a corner-stone on the French Wikipédia. French native, yes, still a transmedia advocate. My way.

Past serves the Future via the Present.

Some people are born greedy. How come? And what’s worse? The hypertrophy of the ego is worse. No, it’s not the same, though they do associate very well.

A former high school friend was born in a greedy family but as I was 15 I had no idea what it meant and I was intrigued by their materialistic way of life. She was a girl lost in a malish jewish family-hood, lacking attention and transforming her needs into authority at school, trying to control us, kids. Living in Cannes on the French Riviera does not help a teen to prepare for the 21st century (and beyond). Tough my creative career was made possible by the fact that I was involved with the cultural and public life of the city very early, I did wonder how much I could bear with the materialists, the greedies and the opportunists. I could never imagine they could also lie. We learn.

After 15 years of promotion of the « Indie American Cinema » in Cannes and elsewhere, as well as promoting my « French Short Films Wave » of the ’90s, I quit from my job in Cannes (and New York, and Paris) on the spot. I gave up. Fed up.

Sandy Mandelberger, former Director of the IFP and other agencies of the film industry, arrived at my home in the early morning with the press kits of the indie movies made by American young directors to hand them to me for their dissemination. In Cannes, we wake up very early to either get to the press screenings at 8 am, or place the materials in hotels lobbies before breakfast. Well, not all festival attendees do that, but the professionals, the ones working at the film market. No film market, no Cannes. No Cannes, no international film and television industry system. Of course over the years the Cannes film festival changed, in the 80s-90s the film industry was « still » great. Sandy and I were pioneering and I thank him for hiring me in New York when I was a film student.

I opened the door and said to Sandy that I quit. I did not want to work for the promotion of nasty film directors, greedy producers, or even great artists, because great artists make you miserable sometimes. The pay was too low for the assets I was putting on the table. I also was a short film director and wanted to produce my first feature, I had a non-profit on my own to work on cultural events with valuable partners, so doing this job every year and sometimes for events in other cities, was too much work for little money. In the film and TV industries, the most valuable asset is your network. Mine was valuable, it was a pity to waste it for the promotion of people with hypertrophy of the ego who will not be here the next year, or ever.

20 years later.

The Cannes high school friend became a mother, working with her brother, or should I say « for » a brother, then « for » her husband. Really? No time for being creative, create her public exposure, be in the fields, learn the real world outside family life, real-world that she never actually experienced on her own. Her husband, one of those other teens from Cannes (really?) became a greedy film producer. Almost logical. Working in France makes it possible for a smart greedy person to benefit from the subsidies and grants from the government agencies (this worth an article…) and to network with the industry in order to build a business that is making money even if it is not providing valuable artistic or cultural assets. I had met hundreds of those. I even worked for some. In this case, there was the common subtle unhealthy distortion of what we call « author’s rights ». He was able to make more money as an author than a producer, using the techniques of the French system for the sake of copyright. That is another story, let’s go back to the « wife », the sister-mother dying for real professional or creative life.

2009, Europe.

I was building an international community for the sake of the Creative Commons. My political investment changed my life. Instead of working « for » the creative industries, I preferred to change it for the sake of ethics and because I was not aligned with the way the French system was working, not even the European system which I know very well. My strong international network and my habits with public relations and the creative businesses allowed me to be fast-building non-profits organizations and innovative tools and communities. New York was still my ideas box and my second home. I met Lance Weiler in London though, where I also saw several of my peers, when we all got « Transmedia Ready » (explanations to come in the next post).

2010, Paris.

I ask my former high school friend, the « wife-mother-sister », to join me in the launch of a company because she has know-how I do not have, such as business management. I recalled of her as being an unfair greedy person but I was sure that she could understand the opportunity that I was describing. In this, I was very right. I thought that partnering with a long time friend from school, will avoid the issues I had in the film industry before in partnering with male-minded greedy producers (see, #meetoo). I asked her to co-found the company. The corporation. I would still have the non-profits on the other side for political and public activism as I did not want to mix the two. This is crucial.

One cannot mix public and private activities when advocating for a concept, for a cultural statement, for change activism, for politics, for social change, or even sustainable life or business. It just does not work overtime. We all tried. One can build a non-profit and a corporation on the side, but the non-profit shall be the private agency for the private money system. Clear. For more than 10 years I was not really making money with Transmedia Ready, I even lost some. Same with Transmedia Meetups (started December 2010), Transmedia Alliance (launched in 2013), and all collaborative workshops such as Barcamps and hackathons. But it was possible to build an on-the-side Transmedia Ready studio or agency to pay ourselves so I can continue to do the necessary activism that was supposed to change the rules at the level of the European Commission. Ambitious? Possible.

There was a good long term strategy for cultural change. Trying to change rules in the ecosystem of the French creative industries was not possible as the copyrights law is also controlled by Europe and the economic and business models are also controlled by Europe, as in any other industry. Even if the idea of Authorship is historically French, even if this money wise copyright protection paid smart greedy opportunists such as the « high school friend’s husband ». (One needs to know the tricks to get money from gov. agencies and copyright unions, but it is worse learning).

Money from the audiences (you and I) enters the public European or French bank accounts and, remains there (…), then it is used for subsidies, sometimes some grants too, to the ones who can manage the rules. That built the actual system we are in. For how long still? There are millions of euros in Luxembourg. Brussels, Geneva, and Strasbourg where the European Parliament is. « They » vote in Strasbourg, but the management offices are in Brussels, and sometimes in Luxembourg (not really in the Union), for instance, Eurostat, the European body for statistical studies is a huge building with some empty offices and lots of well-paid agents in Luxembourg (I worked there as a freelance producer).

2011, Paris.

Back to the girl from Cannes. She litterally said: « I will have a good salary, I’m worth 5.000 euros per month, I’m used to make money. Not like you« . Shocked. I was still in the memory of my best summer ever in 2010, at the « Digital Peak », filming a hacking camp in the mountains of the South of France, with great open-minded people about the Commons and the Open Source. I was building an open-minded community for Change in the current cultural habits destroying the fairness of the creatives, the pioneering, the sense-making of future generations in the media, museums and schools. And, hopefully, reach the decision-making commissions in Brussels and professional gatherings such as market places and conferences. Dream versus utopia.

Nevermind. I took « her » with me to New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco (but once she got the authorization from the family to leave home… humor). Our items of luggage really do not look the same! I had no idea, I just was so much into trusting some other transmedia activists abroad, that I let her took over my network. I did not know what she was preparing behind my back. One cannot say that this is a typically female jealousy issue because I had a similar story with a male New Yorker. A transmedia advocate turned a smart open community of pioneers into a corporation and, even worse, into a trademark. He also used my European strategy to copy-paste, spreading his trademark in several cities including France.

Long term strategies work only with long term ethics.

Backed-up by her greedy unfair husband, the former high school enemy was able to convince some people to work for her, even for free, and not work with me. In one year, I lost friends, investment, and self-esteem. My reputation was attacked and it was spreading all over the international community. Just the fact that I was carrying this « greedy not-so-smart woman » with me in public places made me lost friends because they could not understand why I was with her, or her with me, using my brand.

One day in her home in Paris, straightforward, no introduction: « My husband has nothing to do with this as I take my decision alone but I do not need you, I can do it alone and start my own company ». Done. She also wanted to use the very same business cards. Why did she say that her husband was not involved? Follow my thoughts… I had betrayals in the film and television industry with partners, that was the reason I wanted to work with a high school friend, for the trust. Breaking. She said I could keep the brand… Thank you. She just used the same word without « Ready ». Then she did the copy-paste strategy. Talking a lot was easy for her and by using Names she convinces some naive debutants to get into projects pioneering from the Open Culture and the Open Innovation. Other advocates just did not know anything about this as they all thought she was still associated with my own values, name and network.

The backstories are worth to wait for the revelations when one can judge the real success. Is it money, fuzzing social media (fake statements), or long term ethics?

Today transmedia is developed as a concept by different social groups. One of them is academia, especially in the Spanish language. I never left. I waited. « Transmedia is to the media what contemporary art is to the arts ». I had submitted this statement to the approval of my mentor Brian Clark (passed and missed 1968 -2015.) before making it public. I honor him also for helping me to see the ideas to use in my research, for instance, the Phenomenology theories in philosophy. My statement is still valid. I did doubt. It is mine but I do not need to trademark it (follow my thoughts…). As long as I shared it with smart fair peers and some researchers, I am happy to be an innovative person making a difference for the future, even if painfully broken, especially by greedy opportunists with the hypertrophy of the ego: that disease does not heal, and is not contagious, we wait and they are gone!

Sustainability in the strategy and together with the content, is key. That is the future.

Past serves the Future via the Present. And-Joy.

Tolkien and I at the BNF

I arrive at the giant door of the library. « Bibliothèque National de France« . A series of beautiful buildings commissioned by the former President of France, François Mitterand, dedicated to knowledge and research, as he was a highly educated man fan of literature.
Celebrating my very fist day in this life as a researcher, with a free access to the research section, committed to a new level of my own independent, pragmatic and transdisciplinary research. I organised my day: it is more difficult because of the issues I have encountered in my professional and personal life in the 5 recent years. I act as a handicapped woman to make sure I am going to be safe, nurtured, and able to accomplished some work. I have much less ability for huge tasks these days but my understanding of disciplines and techniques became much more accurate at the same time. My overview of 50 years of self learning, traveling, meetings, studies, art and work, provided to my mind (and heart) a lot more of global understandings and desire for making sense.
I enjoy and get prepared. The goal is to write.
The BNF has an agenda for cultural exhibitions. I am not concerned, at first, and I am not even interested since I have to commit to my goal, and it is hard. So I fake not seing the signs. I recall having been here before for my master degree in political communications, but I have forgotten all the details.
I have seen that TOLKIEN was the title of the exhibit but I was pushing his name away because I did not want to be influenced. Can one transmedia creator or academic not get influenced by Tolkien?
Tolkien storyworld has been important for me but furthermore is way of world building and the sustainability of the universe. The legacy from this beautiful mind is huge and so now I get it why it is all over the place at the BNF. Never mind, I push his name away because I want to concentrate on my topic: transmedia communication for innovative organisations.
The BNF is so big that it is a global perimeter of modern urban architecture with specific cultural points of access for the citizens. A neighbourhood. Kids rehearsed their dancing, tourists march in lines, students eat meals sitting on the ground, near by boats on the Seine river, beautiful skies open over the old Paris. It is the 21st century.
Epic Tolkien at the entrances. I have my eyes captured as I finish to descend the very long stairs and move forward the security portals. My eyes talk to my neuronal system: Stop. Did you notice my birth date? The exhibit is going to close on my birthday so it is written with large letters on the beautiful poster, very large, black, red and some white, with the Tolkien language and signs. Colors of my work, language of my storyworld, doors of my new life, direction for my writings. I was just saying to my little professional self that fiction is always the best for making sense… But corporations, institutions, do not deal with fiction. Except the BNF, which is her role.
In my professional and creative world, Tolkien can be used, even for communication strategies or operations and even for corporate communication. So I do not have to research more, I already have all the clues, I must just write.
I found it interesting lately, that I wanted to extract myself from the transmedia thinking process I started in 2010 and progress towards design thinking and innovation. Why? Now why. Can’t I just read the signs, trust Tolkien, and continue what I created? Can the community, the mean part of it, interrupt my world to the point where I need to switch? Fortunately, I reconnect with deep knowledge of making sense with fiction and I accept to step out of the box where I can explore, not to say exploit, proximity fields of studies that are linked to transmedia as a discipline in the great domain of communication.
If only Marshal McLuhan, Joseph Campbell and Tolkien could have this conversation.
For my birthday, the closing of the Tolkien exhibit and immersive event in Paris, I must have published my PhD proposal right here! So, let’s work. I joined a PhD incubator with the approval of a lab in the field of Innovation that has a section for Information and Communication Sciences. 7 years after meeting with the Director of the lab. After 10 versions of my proposal have been around 6 or 7 labs in France. Years I discuss whether or not I should do a PhD. Please, ask me to come teach in your town. Make it an American town. Language is not a barrier, I can progress in English, and I am still improving my native French, but I speak the language of the human mind and the human heart, as you do.
And-Joy.
TOLKIEN--VOYAGE-EN-TERRE-DU-MI_4245436470801174817

WTF a PhD?

I’ve seen the YouTubers about PhDs and it’s not what I’m looking for. But I found an interesting and well documented article on the New York Times. Well, it is the Times, indeed. It shows again the poor quality of content online and the need for reliable content (#BestPractices), even more we know that reliable content is not the same when it belongs to corporations or groups. Anyway. The topic is about doing/not doing a PhD.

Interestingly, PhD and Thesis mean two different things in French. As I am French, mixed with Belgium family and transformed by the American culture… So : PhD refers to a « Doctorate in PHilosophy » and is a result of a study in a specialised field.

The Thesis is the document a student presents to her peers at the end of the research process, it can be for a master or a PhD.

THE WHYs

For me a PhD starting after 50 years old is a complex approach. In my case, I have never learned the methodologies for research: I start from scratch. I did not have to research much for my Master degree, I used a professional project to build on and with. It took 6 years and many labs to finally come back to the former place and lab where everything started (Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers, Paris). And I am not even enrolled YET (2019).

Intellectually, it is fine, I have some comfort in terms of organisation and mentorship. But scientifically, I’m an outsider. I could secure some teaching along the way as I love being with students and I would like to teach abroad. Transmitting is valuable.

It will contribute to general progress in the field of communication and the humanities, I want to complete a knowledge base, I have so much case studies in my backpack!

Will it rise my consulting rates? Will it give this brand – Transmedia Ready – a better exposure across borders (do we need it?), will it help me work internationally as I used to do?

It pleases me to acquire more knowledge in the humanities, in management and design,  and it makes me feel great to express my ideas about experiences in the arts, content production, co-design, project management and business development from the p.o.v. of the creative industries. I also like to share knowledge on personal development and role playing in real life.

I am informed. PhD thesis do not get read by the public, not even the target audience, rarely by the experts. If I want my knowledge and experiences to be SPREADABLE, I need to publish my books!

Now, I’ve read so much B.S. about transmedia, I even read stuff transformed from my own teaching (plagiat)!

There is a great challenge at working in the country of France, it is to survive to mediocrity. But it is the only place where I can probably do the challenge almost for free. I am even considering a crowdfunding campaign for this project as I will need to work more than ever, and dedicate 3 years at least. As if I have not done so yet! Lots of laughing.

Cheers To Peers!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 7 Transmedia Families

A card game, a coaching tool, a very slow alternate reality game, or just a serious game…

The « 7 Transmedia Families » game is based on the historical deck of cards « Happy Families » (public domain) which emerged from the industrial revolution of the 19th century together with its new professions. Our version proposes creatives to work on the optimization of their project (art, marketing, communication, innovation) with the idea of transmediality. A total of 42 cards & roles to co-design, co-create, and co-produce.

The serious game raises awareness among practitioners about the concepts and methodologies for transmedia design and co-design. It features ideation for optimizing a project from conception to activation and dissemination. It is a fun thinking tool aimed at everyone who wants to play a role in content production processes. The game contributes to developing creativity, knowledge, cooperation, and expertise.

In 2014, we have experienced proof of concept with the Institute for Research and Innovation of the Centre Pompidou (Paris, France). An ebook has been written by our long term collaborator Emmanuel Bethoux, and you can find content by Karine Halpern here and on SlideShare (closed in 2015 but online for archives).   

Guidelines are to be reinvented by you!

By playing with the « 7 Transmedia Families » practitioners become « transmedia ready » in a number of ways:

  • They see the scope and scale of a multiplatform and multidimensional production using associated MEDIAFORMS.
  • They gain insights into developing a project with a creative, and immersive approach.
  • They explore our methodology, ideas and strategies for execution in communication,  innovation, and collective intelligence.
  • They better understand how to coordinate collaborative work, understand the concept of TRANSIENT GROUPS and generate better practices.

7 transmedia suits, or topic, of 6 family members, or characters, or roles are 2 grandparents, 2 parents, a son and a daughter.  The goal is to collect and match complete families of 6 and show them to the other players. But, of course, we propose much more… The game works  for small and larger groups as players can pair up and change roles along the ride.

              1. Storyworld

              2. Communities

              3. Design

              4. Gameplay

              5. Multiplatforms

              6. Business Model

              7. Production

Classic rules:

It sounds like Rummy or Go Fish without the fishing… Deal all the cards to the players. The player to the dealer’s left takes the 1st turn, the play continues clockwise. Taking a turn, a player asks another one of his choice for a specific card, naming the Family and the Character. But in order to do so, he or she must hold at least 1 card of the same family.

« In the StoryWorld family, I ask for the Grand-Father »

If the asked player has the requested card in his hands, he or she must give it away. If not, he or she says: « Not in production ». Next turn. Play continues until someone collects a complete family and is ready to use it to pitch a transmedia project.

There is a variation when the players save cards for a pile. Many variations will then help to develop the conceptual approach of the game as an educational and training tool.

The same card can be requested again by any other player, and so on… It is very important to give attention to collaborative play: use your memory, your sense of observation and details, find out where are the “skills”, and thus the missing cards.

2015, American Digital Lab // Connecting Cultures.

Our incubation in the 1st digital and creative lab of the French government in New York in 2015: American Digital Lab // Connecting Cultures.

Press Release

 Transmedia Ready was in NYC for the first session of the FRENCH AMERICAN DIGITAL LAB. The programme has many partners including Business France and the New Media Center in New York, and is conducted by the Cultural Services of the French embassy.

The theme is #Storytelling, meaning for us « immersive storytelling » to refer to the work developed these latest years by practitioners in the fiels of media, culture and the arts, with the digital tools of the 21st century.

What we are trying to do since 2010:

  • inspire creative ways of making sense
  • communicate with quality design and the arts 
  • foster the participatory and digital culture
  • work in a cross cultural ecosystem

This takes place in many ways (events, workshops, trainings, masterclasses, coaching and social media campaigns) but our core asset is the methodology we have developped over the years embodied in the artefact of the 7 Transmedia Families, a card deck and real life game, together with our directory of experts and talent around the world. This is a design thinking tool for innovation in communication and transmedia design. 

In the era of a never-ending internet expansion, there are almost no boundaries to access culture and the cultural heritage. Yet, museums are one of the very few places where the time often seems not to have accelerated. Websites, audioguide, visioguides, mobile games do already exist in an increasing number of organisations, but some of the most remarkable characteristics of the internet age rarely prevail, among which its worldwide real-time and social interconnectivity.

Based on a unique experience in the field of transmedia and serious gaming, Transmedia Ready proposes a revolutionary approach to cultural mediation through a worldwide scalable concept of transmedia strategies that links artworks, curators and visitors from different museums in a common modular gaming platform. This is possible by working with our Directory of talent and experts. Based on this holistic approach, we foster and facilitate a cultural bridges. Transmedia Ready has developped a workshop format to optimize the assets of a creative project, or a communication campaign, based on an innovative methodology. Storytelling is at the very heart of our concept and is one of the key element that enable to link the different versions of a transmedia  experience. But not only…

Webisode #2015. Back & Side Stories

Back and side stories.

For a new beginning this is also a new post for the blogs, as well as a new way to blog and keep the #transmedia #Fairies and #Alchimists aware of my back story. Let’s list some news in a #FastThinking way for the #SlowRev I care for since a decade. Today is the Harvest moon and a Supermoon with effects on « endings » and « beginnings » of our personal stories.

Some professionals from the web industry will tell you that you need to separate the topics, write short articles, use numbers and lists, a strong image, among other common advices that are supposed to influence SEO. I was myself advising to separate the « personal » (#perso) from the professional (#pro) on social networks and blogs. No. Change happens here too.

In my case I have been stuck in writing for sometimes (maybe 2 years) because I could not be sure of blogging publicly about my « transmedia diaries« , some personal side stories in the transmedia hoods, backstage stories of my R&D with #Transmedia Ready (a non profit, at this point, based in France, a Think & Do Tank since 2010). So called « experts » would say that the personal stories should be kept aside. That is very paradoxal with the blogging discipline of writing. Blogging is based of self expression. So let’s go back to the fundamentals and blog on personal stuff. And to be even more transmedia ready, trans-disciplinary, and disruptive, let’s mix the personal and the professional. That would be the right editorial line up for me and a way to explore its limits. Really, when I created the game of the « 7 Transmedia Families » (link), I was totally in that « mix ». Later, I created the « Transmedia Mix » (link), but that one is another side story…

I’m not a real geek. 

When my new web site was being built on the Go Daddy server it was handle by a French geek whom was supposed to be a WordPress expert. The idea was to use an open source tool and create a sustainable blogging parteform for Transmedia Ready, where we could use both French and English without switching the whole site from either one language. Hououou! Too complicated! Not in the rules of the geek man and not in the rules of the web agency either. After spending 800 Euros, I had to kick the man out of my storyworld because he was making things worse, without guilt. After that I had a series of commercial issues with Go Daddy, related to their marketing strategy that have direct bad effects. A mess, a nightmare, had closed by a « giving it all up » final option. Lately, in the location I was exploring for my new digital and real life, #SophiaAntipolis, in the South of France, I met the right #WordPress experts and slowly rebuild some confidence in the technology, the CMS, the servers, and the geeks.

It does influence our #Creativity to actually manage the #Digital parts. Now, about the words, the terms… How much freedom do we really have in the connected universe, the « WEB 5.0 »?

Around year 2007 I was told that I had too many values. What? How can someone have to many values? That is when I started to leave the political movement I was involved with, and join what I call the « friendly hacking » movement. I also gained in confidence as I found myself to be the oldest in every groups I was visiting or being part of. I had to take responsibility for my age, my « too many » values, my lack of knowledge in coding and my vision: my personal storyworld.

Now my tags are:

#FastThinking . My brain and I live together in good terms most of the time but in this relationship there is no place for many individuals, therefore I train myself to rethink, not-think, re-phrase, slow down, etc. Since one of the element I use in my methodology for coaching creative projects and people is #Maieutics, I apply it to my self too. If I am too fast in my thinking, I ask myself about the present moment and recall the reasons why I am here. I do not speak if I am surrounded with people whom do not know my storyworld, I prefer to shut up and progress in a subtil way. Fast thinkers come my way in synchronicity, in real life and on the social networks, we find each other, we merge, we converge, we co-create, that is what I had planned on Twitter with the hashtag #HumanConvergence (that was in 2011). That is part of the New Renaissance, a global movement that takes us to the present and the future in a Slow Revolution that is not only necessary but that makes it possible to actually rebuild the societies. Part of this movement is the new alternative social and political mouvements and organisations. This creates what I called « Transient groups ». 

We already know that #art if the core expression of #politics. 

– « But you cannot use the term transient, it does not exist!« .

Smile. Everything I cannot do because it is not part of the common vocabulary, common online behaviour, common work habits, common relationships maintenance, I decided I will do it even more.

#SlowRev is about the slow revolution related to the « New Renaissance » mouvement that is happening in the world since 2007, maybe from before. I take 2007 for the side story when President Sarkozy asked Nobel Price in Economics, Joseph Stiglitz, to spread is work and ideas on a new way to measure the progress of the societies. I worked on a digital programme just about that topic and that transformed my life, both « perso and pro » life. The New Renaissance mouvement is fundamentally socio-cultural, it incarnates with the digital art, but more interestingly with the « Participatory Culture », which may be the same thing then what is called « Open Culture »? I believe that the new form of art now is the « Participatory Art ». That is why I want to create in the #Web5.0 and manage my own #Glossary.

The « Present Shock » reality is here. I refer to the book by Douglas Rushkoff, whom handed his book to me in the bloggers’ room in Austin, Texas, when I was attended the South by South West Festival in 2013. We met in synchronicity and I only thank him now, because, time does not count in the New Renaissance, only counts sustainability and progress.

  • #WEB5.0
  • #transmedia
  • #Fairies & #Alchimists
  • #FreeWords
  • #ParticipatoryArt
  • #NewRenaissance
  • #OpenCulture

Creative Digital Lab NYC: Steps into 2015-2016

The « French-American Digital Lab // Connecting Cultures » is a creative lab and an economic development program for startups and content creators of the cultural sector. The 2015 inaugural theme is narration, aka storytelling, transmedia, digital media, games, journalism & publishing. En français – Presse en ligne : Usine Digitale  –  Maddyness 

This post is in the « Transmedia Diaries » category of my writing, really, I cannot totally divide the professional from the personal, the two are intertwined for too long and what happened in 2015 was pretty intense, on both sides. Let’s share some aspects of it.

The #ParisAttack happened just after I have arrived on 84th street, Manhattan, New York City, where I lived when I was in my twenties studying Film and Media at CUNY. 25 years later, going back to a beloved place and beloved people, I’m getting not only so much compassion from the New Yorkers about the emergency state in France (let’s be clear, call it « war »), but I also get attention of my peers with the participation of Transmedia Ready to the 1st « French American Digital Lab // Connecting Cultures »(*) organised by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the USA. We are among the 10 French startups of the lab, > here is the press release.

#Gratitude to all speakers and organisers! It was intense, rich, useful, and it does leave a good track of progress. The main target was the #Museums, but I did so much more than experiencing my transmedia concept to the world of culture. It’s a long « yellow bricks road » to arrive in Manhattan bridging NYC and my other home town on the French Riviera. A teenager dream being realised with my heart and the « Network of Networks ». All came into place, in one year. To celebrate 2015 and close the 1st half of a century of my personal life, here is a small pix album > LINK.

But what else in the Transmedia Ready Renaissance?

After processing several proofs of concept for the « 7 Transmedia Families » coaching tool and card game (the prototype is on PINTEREST), I took the non profit organisation Transmedia Ready to a new level and beginning. Moving to the South of France, putting in place new partnerships, starting concrete projects to implement my methodology, reaching the scope of the universe I was planning, including praxis and research, opening to new talent, fairies and alchimists. Sophia Antipolis, in Antibes, France, is a tiny « Silicon Valley » where we can have it all in terms of technology, research, cross culture and creativity. We work in English, we are 20mn away from Nice international airport, it is 15mn away from Cannes (by the way, another home town of mine…). Every day we work and skype in between the Med sea and the Alps.

I found out that being a pioneer is hard and painful. I had many losses, besides some successes. What cannot be accomplished because of the lack of understanding, coherence, trust and finance, needs time to get everyone prepared for the move, the change, the synchronicity. The move has come. It is smooth. People do get transmedia ready, slowly, and parasites disappear, vampires get tired and toxic practices and people get discovered. Transmedia is socio-cultural, therefore there is a political bond to it, it is related to the Participatory Culture. Therefore it can only succeed in trans-parency! Transmedia understanding is related to what the societies are going through in terms of changes. It is not entertainment, or gaming, or marketing, or technology, it is all of the above, BUT more. It is a communicational mode and behaviour. It is a phenomenon, as mentor and transmedia alchimist Brian Clark would put it. (You can support the Brian Clark Fund >http://www.filmlinc.org/support-us/brian-clark-fund/)

I have a pretty political viewpoint for co-creation. Therefore I have targeted pretty large communities and tough topics. The more difficulties, the more you need the peers. The bigger the budget, the better is the work to convince the stake holders. It works like in the business of films, which is where I was trained. Please understand that some details cannot be shared here for strategic reasons, but here are some clues.

After 5 years of advocacy for transmedia as a transdisciplinary art form, we can now get into the motion of transmedia practice that is more socio-cultural, community focused, carrying out integrity and transparency, less critiqued, maybe. In order to accomplish a transmedia campaign or creation, one needs the other one, one cannot be a transmedia creator on his own, it can only work if talent is associated to talent. Because you need to be in a « transient group » in order to reach a 21st century audience… (More of this thinking is elaborated in the coming guidelines for the « 7 Transmedia Families », join our group here > Facebook.com/groups/TransmediaReady02.

« Woodstock 5.0 » is a project based on a documentary film I made for the 25th anniversary of the Woodstock Music and Art Fair, in 1994 (#Love4Peace). The term « 5.0 » (five dot zero) is conceptualized from a vision and understanding of what could be the « Web 5.0 », including « data storytelling » and « transmedia design » with transmedia fairy Mylène Leitzelman. In order to experiment this new form of global and eco-communication, I play the real life game of the « 7 Transmedia Families » with talent from a « Directory » I created, and I use the « Network Of Networks » to bring together the energy that needs to be in place for bigger projects. My role is the one of the facilitator, the conductor, the producer, and creative director, all of these in one « character », a « role » (or a « card »…). We enhance the talent of the creative partners that will make it happen, it works like in a « Family ».

During the « Digital Lab » I was able to meet with the United Nations, thank you to the French Embassy. I had a great experience with the UN in the past and did work with organisations such as the OECD, the European Commission and other governmental agencies and ministries. That experience gave me the strength to envision the potential of an international campaign that would serve the interest of the civil society, in relation with the Media and the Policy Makers. In 2015, the geopolitics made me step forward… #Love4Peace is the global tag. #Progress is my personal tag.

The « Digital Lab » gave me opportunities to meet with organisations I can partner with. Welcome @foossa_com, @NYMediaCenter, @FracturedAtlas, the MET Media Lab with @macascos & @sree, @MartinRogard at Dailymotion, @franceinnyc, @AprilArrg, @datvized and @Caitlin_Burns, and all the beautiful cultural startups of the Digital Lab LINK. But on the personal level, it gave me the opportunity to manifest the assets I had gather over the years between New York, Paris, Brussels, Cannes and now Sophia Antipolis. It was – it is – making sense! Poking peer @Wuxia for the philosophy of making sense with transmedia storytelling.

When something is making sense you can actually feel it with your guts, it is what I call the « feel-effect ». It works with creation and with business, and works well in storytelling for all kind of communication. Poking peer Michael Margolis @GetStoried. It is the synchronistic integration of so much preparation. Now comes the time, now is the need, now are the societies ready and connected. We have seen the potential with bad, and some good, examples. I let you picture the events we have been going through, thanks to social media for the good and the bad, we learn. Not to mention the personal events for each of us, we grow. We are all humans, even with chips, wi-fi, devices and bots. Even with Jedi costumes.

The society is in need for better communication, better relations, better practices and more integrity. We need facilitation and mediation. We need quality curation in a world overloaded with content and knowledge. We need a better management for knowledge and transmission. We actually need trans-mission in a trans-disciplinary world.

This year we launch the new version of the « 7 Transmedia Families » card game, and real life game. You do not have to be a professional creative to participate, you can just give your point of view, or support the game, by buying the cards, and their ebook, and use them in any way you want, or posting online. There are real plain and traditional guidelines, but there will be the hacked ones, the ones you can DIY.

If you are an individual, a project curator, a business in need for transformation, transmedia strategy, or design thinking, you can ask us for a workshop, and project coaching, whatever format you pick among the ones we have created on purpose, and that we facilitate ourselves and with our partners. If you are a start-up, become a « smart-up », you can bêta test your tool or service in our « living lab » which is the child of our Think & Do Tank started in 2010.

All of this is just starting, new ideas and practice will emerge even more. The « Transmedia Living Lab » is both virtual and in real life, based in Sophia Antipolis, linked with New Yok City, and other places of the world. Partners are welcome. Once in a while, we process a « Transmedia Mix », where a project is incubated with the participation of experts and creatives, and a good deal of facilitation and coaching. Join us in May 2016 in Sophia Antipolis for a short visit and presentation.