Weekly roundup: From the Future of StoryTelling
FUTURE OF STORYTELLING: I — that’s me, Paul VanDeCarr, on the left there — attended the Future of Storytelling Summit last week, where technologists, media-makers, social-good leaders, and others came together to experience and discuss leading-edge forms of storytelling. I facilitated a couple sessions with former Vice President Al Gore, who asked attendees how we can use digital technology to support democracy — to transform the “plutocracy” he said we now have in the United States. One of the more interesting comments from the assembled group was from a man whose name I didn’t catch. He pointed to examples of social-change makers whose activism straddled the physical and digital worlds, such as Occupy Wall Street and Tahrir Square. Social media was and still is important to those movements, and yet they connect to people, vitally, face to face. How can those two ways of connecting be combined for full effect? Another person wondered aloud about the “wisdom the crowd” that Gore had lauded; yes, said the man, crowds can accurately guess the number of jelly beans in a jar or the weight of a cow, but are they any wiser than individuals about matters of judgment, or political matters about which they are uninformed? For him, the question was how to use the internet to inform people about social issues enough that they can then, as a crowd, yield some wisdom.