Found an email this weekend where I told myself to blog these thoughts. Never did. So here we are, with storytelling semantics.
We can do basic semantic handling for an aggregation or non-narrative parts of a story. Something is more important. Something is less important. Something has some priority in relation to other pieces. But *within* the narrative, storytelling itself is semantic. An asset at the top designates an introductory element. An asset near the end designates a conclusive element. Assets along the way are ordered so as to best define an inquisitive journey. An asset to the side of a narrative indicates explanation. An asset in the narrative flow indicates it’s a core part of the storytelling.
Basic semantic handling is fine. Natural narrative semantic handling is AWESOME.
If you allow this kind of natural semantics, can producers violate this contract with the audience and drop in assets wherever, without regard for relation to the narrative and the meaning of that relation? Certainly. But it’s not the system’s job to stop their mistakes. Their organizations and bosses have that responsibility, and digital organizations and bosses have the ongoing task of helping producers tell the best stories possible, with smart and strong narratives. Building off that direction, that digital storytelling is getting better, our platforms and distribution should encourage smart interpretations of natural, narrative semantic decisions….