Week 3: Open-source assisting storytelling

I remember back in middle school, before Wikipedia was seen as a more “legitimate” source, that my teachers would always warn us to “NEVER use Wikipedia!!!”. I don’t know one of my classmates actually followed that rule, but in the seven-ish years since middle school, there has been a drastic outlook change on Wikipedia, the world’s favorite open-source encyclopedia. As Wikipedia celebrates its 15th year, you can tell how institutions have seen the success of Wikipedia and begun to understand the importance of having open source material available for an increasingly Internet-centered society who has a greater demand for open source content, as mentioned by Mia Ridge in her article. Multiple institutions, such as the Tate Modern and even MIT have posted countless material on the Internet free for public use, and that has begun to transform how we are able to consume and apply knowledge.

One way you can see the impact of Open Source is in the creative industry. While it may seem like they are just copying their predecessors, without open source or copyright free material, it has actually increased creativity, especially as new platforms, such as YouTube, increase in dominance. For instance, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, is a popular spin off on Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, which is open source. But, they were able to apply it to a cohesive digital storytelling plan (explained here by Joe Lambert) and give it its very own life. It is not like the 1995 BBC adaption, nor the 2005 movie, which are direct adaptations. It took the main themes of Austen’s novel and applied it to the 21st century, and delivered it through a medium that worked  with the platform it was presented on (vlog-style episodes on YouTube). The creators were able to take advantage of the open-sourced material, and meld it together with the different aspects of digital storytelling to create something not quite seen before.