CITY BY SUBWAY / STORYWORLD

TRANSMEDIA NARRATIVE STRUCTURE

City by Subway is a media container that combines the entertainment industry to the tourism sector. The subjects to tell are cities and the main theme is the journey understood both from the narrative and tourism point of view.

  In this video Max Borsani explains the transmedia narrative structure of the platform.



The story involves the viewer in an enlarged experience. User is in fact a spectator, a protagonist and an author and can live the experience of the trip in 3 phases:
1) “Before" - through entertainment content about cities,
2) “During” - through the real and physical experience in a city
3) “After” - sharing and adding his emotions and stories to the overall story.

City by Subway structure provides an integrated publishing, production and participation model among publishers, users and brands; and has a transmedia narrative structure, both in the construction and production of the story and in his reading and sharing mode.

Today we are creating more and more content about cities but their use is fragmented and not homogeneous, this makes us lose the sense of the general narrative about the place and the identity of the city. We need to aggregate content in editorial projects that make sense in order to live a satisfactory narrative and stimulate the transformation of the public from traveler/spectator to traveler/tourist and at the end traveler/author.

The overall aim of the project is to enhance our own city and the places that we are passionate through narration and suggestions for improving them. It is not a political project, but a way to leave a mark for ourselves and participate in the largest collective narrative about cities.

Contents that tell the city are hooked to the places and not consumed in the timeline of friends. City by Subway is not built on the concept of the event but on planning, in constant development, as if it were a living organism that has within it the past, the present and the future direction. An underground network built by many people, brick by brick.

The Subway metaphor is both the look and the narrative environment and allows you to travel between places and to immerse yourself in their stories. The narrative environment is a set of containers, city, line and stations, which carry the story deeper and deeper and in expansion. The containers are, in all effects, narrative worlds that bring together different content (photos, videos, texts, etc.) and develop different themes.

Navigation and narrative structure develops horizontally (place by place) and vertically with the same topic insights and within a station.

Horizontal Narration: place by place.
Each line has a point of view and a subject to be developed. For example: art, architecture and design, history and culture, artisans, historical brands, universities, etc.
The narration is fragmented into "episodes" but follows the thread of the line which also determines the order of the stations and any branch of the trail.

Vertical narration: within a station
The place is the subject to tell. Every place (station) is narrated through the main video, the social stories section (photos, video and text) and the channels. The story is composed by several points of view (different "authors") and from the past to the present.
During content uploading you can set the shot date in order to create a temporal narrative (filter "shot date") that allows you to see the change of a place from the past to the present.

The platform structure allows the creation of strategic sequences of contents in order to direct the viewer's interest through a kind of funnel.

Content can be:
"Hook content", for example teaser and trailer;
"engaging and relation content", for example web series,
"content in-depth", internal to the platform, for example tutorial, educational or documentary; or via external links to other websites or social media.

Publisher network outlines storyline, format, art direction and production and realizes the main contents, while the "traveler" is the spectator, protagonist and co-author of the story.

Some developments:
For example you could develop Web series distributed between cities and stations of a line and embed episodes in the space dedicated to the main video.

Contents uploaded into "Station Stories” area, explode the narrative of the place from many points of view and through different forms. You can aggregate poems, short films, music, photos, multimedia catalogs such as Steller stories. Many content that enrich the story and inspire new content. For example from a story you can add information about the area, anecdotes or photos exploding a subplot or show architectural details. A station can also be used as a blog, from more bloggers. Or you can develop games that combine the online environment to the physical and real one.

Content can be created by professionals (filmmakers, writers, photographers, schools, etc.), from users (bloggers, Facebook page managers, Instagrammers, etc.) or collected from other sources (web, books, ebooks, games, TV, etc.) and added to the narrative.

Channels are a sort of web tv with a schedule to "build", possibly with a brand. For example, could be interviews, tutorials, short films, documentaries, etc. Inherent to the line or a single station. Contents may also be in live stream and show an event.

You can create ad hoc Branded projects like "The yellow tennis ball stories" where a tennis ball travels the world and discover the sights. Or organize contests with prizes offred by Brands in order to engage citizens.

For example you could tell the parks of a city through a web series whose protagonists (friends or a family) have a picnic every time in a different park. Each station represents an episode and may have its own specific narrative sequentiality that relates parks creating a path.

Contents may be co produced with the support of Brands related to the theme of the series such as green, wellness or food; or local activities related to the park. You could create a contest to engage users to tell how they live the park and provide advice on particular recipes for the best picnic and then, send them to pick up a gadeget in a local nearby commercial activity.

Or tell, through photos, videos, texts and illustrations, the story of a character that runs through the city.

In addition to on-line developments you can realize publishing products that go beyond the platform. For example the best content could be collected in a book or an e-book to sell or offer as a present thanks to the support of a Brand. Or create ad hoc calendars. Or pick up some videos and distribute them through a television program or a Company such as airlines, tour operators, etc.

Registered users can create their line in order to show thier trip to friends, sharing the line. In this way, thier role changes from spectators/readers to authors and publishers.

Cities, lines and stations with different contents, can be shared on different social network by Publishers, Users and Partners/Brand. The participatory nature of the project thus also facilitate the sharing, virally expanding the communication. From this point of view the project values the theory of the long tail, both as regards the value that can bring the sum of many publishing projects in economic and communication terms and both in respect of quality content that retain their value in time and can count on an accumulation of hits (views).

In short, the possibilities are vast both from the narrative and sustainability point of view.

For an insight into the possibilities offered by the platform discover "ENVIRONMENT AND NAVIGATION" and "STRUCTURE & CONTENT" in Help section.

Discover tools dedicated to REGISTERED USERS and how you can UPLOAD your CONTENTS in Tools section.

City by Subway supports and facilitates the work of publisher providing guidelines to define the editorial choices and a course for the creation of contents.