Below are eight trends that we have identified in the course and that we believe are of importance for the Future of Storytelling and Storytelling of the Future. Each trend is important for at least a few groups, and sometimes for many project groups.
VIRTUAL REALITY, AUGMENTED REALITY AND 360o VIDEO STORYTELLINGIn the future, stories will be told in a way that involves the audience to a higher degree. This can be done by using technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality and 360o video storytelling and these technologies will be simple to use and easily accessible. Utilizing these technologies to tell stories, the audience will to higher extend than today “experience” content such as sports events, concerts or in-depth news reporting.
BIG DATA AND DATA JOURNALISMVery large amounts of collected data (“big data”) will aid storytelling in the future. The amount of data that is collected about virtually everything in society is growing exponentially each year. The challenge is to present stories based on this information in new and compelling ways or to develop and explore “big data storytelling” – a genre that hardly exist today.
MOBILE, AUDIO AND VIDEOAn increasing part of storytelling in the future will be told via mobile devices, and preferably by using video and audio. This move towards increased mobile, video and audio contents means that the proportion of text-based, written information is expected to decrease in the future compared to audio and video.
INTERACTIVITYStorytelling in the future will preferably be done by using interactive tools. This means that the consumer prefers to interact with the story or the storyteller in various ways, for example through computer games or by exploring and interacting with different kinds of interactive stories. It might also be the case that the loop between the storyteller (journalist) and the reader (viewer, listener, gamer, consumer etc.) will become tighter.
SPREADABILITY AND CO-CREATION IN SOCIAL MEDIAStories will more easily be spread “laterally” among readers, users or consumers in the future and social media will play an important role in this process. With the proliferation of smartphones (cameras), users will also become more involved in the co-creation of content and eye-witness reporting is one example of this trend.
FILTER BUBBLES, PERSONALIZED STORYTELLING AND POINT OF VIEWPeople will to a higher degree consume media content that is adapted and filtered to fit their particular interests. Finding stories that to a higher extent corresponds to my particular interests and points of view as well as a community of others who share my opinions can be perceived as both empowering and liberating. The downside is that being enclosed in such “filter bubbles” and “echo chambers” will make it more difficult to understand others’ sometimes slightly and at other times radically different perspectives. It might also mean that we will miss out on broader perspectives of certain issues, on topics that that we don’t know we are interested in and in topics that we should be interested in, for example “boring”, uncomfortable or difficult issues that are of societal importance.
HUMAN SENSESThe human senses will be used in the future to a higher degree when it comes to conveying stories and media content. New technologies will be presented that enhance our human senses in different ways.
SHORTER ATTENTION SPANPeoples’ attention span has decreased and will continue to get even shorter in the future. Most viewers, listeners and readers will have little patience for long news stories and media content that demands a heavy up-front investment in terms of time and attention. This will have serious implications for storytelling in terms of what kinds of stories can and will be told in the future and will spur the development of new genres of simplifying and telling stories succinctly. It might also mean that it will be hard to tell stories that are inherently complex (for example the background to a conflict) unless you “lure” or entice people to engage in long, time-consuming stories