Transmedia Perspectives

  • Sabiha GhellalEmail author
  • Annika Wiklund-Engblom
  • Ann Morrison
  • Damjan Obal
Part of the Media Business and Innovation book series (MEDIA)


The term transmedia is often used to describe the seamless consumption of a variety of content that is part of the same product across multiple delivery channels. Media convergence, divergence and transmedia are closely related and describe an evolving paradigm of content consumption. In this chapter, we address the challenge to provide a clear distinction between transmedia, convergence and divergence as separate, but intertwined concepts. The multifaceted and interdisciplinary nature of the subject necessitates respecting various interpretations of transmedia storytelling. By collecting and grouping the various perspectives that shape the understanding and expectations of transmedia storytelling, we came up with a conceptual transmedia methodology that is based on both traditional storytelling frameworks such as ‘fictional universes’ and user experience design theories. This stands in contrast to the commercial interpretations of transmedia storytelling, which are often based on multimedia merchandising solutions rather than on rich evolving storylines that run across multiple platforms. The evolving methodology illustrates the complexities of transmedia design, including for example interdisciplinarity, genres, and emergent production models. We focus on user experience design early in the creative writing process, replacing former methods that added transmedia patterns as if an afterthought at the end of a production cycle.


Creative Writing Cloud Chamber Fictional World Content Consumption Augmented Reality Game 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We would like to thank Christy Dena, Christian Fonnesbech for insight into their work. We would also like to thank all workshop participants as well as the interviewees for their invaluable insight into their perspectives.


  1. AB Europe. (2010). Multi screeners report (Media Scope Report 2010).Google Scholar
  2. Abreu, J., & Almeida, P. (2009). From 2BeOn results to new media challenges for social (i)TV. In P. Cesar, D. Geerts, & K. Chorianopoulos (Eds.), Social interactive television: Immersive shared experiences and perspectives (pp. 225–246). Hershey, PA: IGI Press.Google Scholar
  3. Benford, S., Giannachi, G., Koleva, B., & Rodden, T. (2009). From interaction to trajectories. In Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 709–718). New York.Google Scholar
  4. Bjork, S., & Holopainen, J. (2005). Patterns in game design. Hingham, MA: Charles River Media.Google Scholar
  5. Bolter, D., & Gromala, D. (2005). Windows and mirrors. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  6. Castro, E. (2010). EPUB Straight to the point. Berkeley, CA: Peachpit Press.Google Scholar
  7. Cheng, B., Stein, L., Jin, H., & Zhang, Z. (2008). Towards cinematic internet video-on-demand. In Proceedings of the 3rd ACM SIGOPS/EuroSys European Conference on Computer Systems (pp. 109–122). ACM.Google Scholar
  8. Cooper, A. (2004). The inmates are running the asylum. Indianapolis, IN: Sams Publishing.Google Scholar
  9. Czikszentmihalyi, M., & Nakamura, J. (2002). The concept of flow. In C. R. Snyder & S. J. Lopez (Eds.), The handbook of positive psychology (pp. 89–92). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Dourish, P. (2004). Where the action is: The foundations of embodied interaction. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  11. Fauconnier, G., & Turner, M. (2002). The way we think. Conceptual blending and the minds hidden complexities. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  12. Fidler, R. (1997). Mediamorphosis. Understanding new media. Thousand Oaks, CA: Pine Forge Press.Google Scholar
  13. Fields, S. (1979). Screenplay (Rev. ed.). (2005). New York: Delta Publishing.Google Scholar
  14. Freytag, G. (1836). Die Technik des Dramas. Leipzig: Verlag von S. Hirzel.Google Scholar
  15. Hassenzahl, M., & Tractinsky, N. (2006). User experience-a research agenda. Behaviour & information technology, 25(2), 91–97.Google Scholar
  16. Hassenzahl, M. (2010). Experience design: Technology for all the right reasons. La Vergne, TN: Morgan and Claypool.Google Scholar
  17. Humphrey, G. (1924). The psychology of the gestalt. Journal of Educational Psychology, 15(7), 401–412.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Jenkins, H. (2006). Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide. New York: New York University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Jenkins, H. (2011). Transmedia 202: Further reflections. Accessed January 13, 2013, from
  20. Johansson, M., & Porko-Hudd, M. (2013). Smart slöjd med smarta mobiltelefoner?—om didaktiska dimensioner i digitalt lärande (Smart sloyd with smart phones? Didactical dimensions in digital learning). In Marner, A., & Örtegren, H. (Eds.), KLÄM. Konferenstexter om Lärande, Ämnesdidaktik och Mediebruk (KLÄM. Conference texts on Learning, Didactics and Media use). Tilde (skriftserie No. 1). Umeå: Umeå University.Google Scholar
  21. Jones, D. W. (2006). The tough guide to fantasyland. New York: Firebird.Google Scholar
  22. Kinder, M. (1991). Playing with power in movies, television and video games. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  23. Kolb, D. A. (1984). Experiential learning: Experience as the source of learning and development. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  24. Leonard, D., & Sensiper, S. (1998). The role of tacit knowledge in group innovation. California Management Review, 40(3), 112–132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Lindt, I., Ohlenburg, J., Pankoke-Babatz, U., & Ghellal, S. (2007). A report on the crossmedia game epidemic menace. Computers in Entertaintainment, 5(1), 1–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Luckin, R., Bligh, B., Manches, A., Ainsworth, S., Crook, C., & Noss, R. (2012). Decoding learning: The proof, promise and potential of digital education (Nesta Report). Accessed December 13, 2012, from
  27. Montola, M., Stenros, J., & Waern, A. (2009). Pervasive games: Theory and design. Burlington, MA: Morgan Kaufmann.Google Scholar
  28. Murray, J. H. (2012). Transcending transmedia: Emerging story telling structures for the emerging convergence platforms. In EuroiTV 12 Proceedings of the 10th European conference on Interactive tv and video (pp. 1–6).Google Scholar
  29. Murray, J. H. (2013). Transcending transmedia ACM. Accessed October 15, 2013, from
  30. Negroponte, N. (1995). Being digital. New York: Alfred A Knopf.Google Scholar
  31. Netflix Inc. US Patent Nos. 6,584,450; 7,024,381; 7,631,323; 7,403,910; and 7,617,127.Google Scholar
  32. Paas, F., Renkel, A., & Sweller, J. (2004). Cognitive load theory: Instructional implications of the interaction between information structures and cognitive architecture. Instructional Science, 32, 1–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Prince, G. (1994). Narratology. In M. Groden & M. Kreiswirth (Eds.), John Hopkins guide to literary theory and criticism (p. 524). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Pritchard, R., & Ashwood, E. (2008). Managing motivation. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  35. Säljö, R., & Linderoth, J. (Eds.). (2002). Utm@ningar och e-frestelser: IT och skolans lärkultur. (Ch@llenges and e-Temptations: ICT and the learning culture of our school). Stockholm: Prisma.Google Scholar
  36. Sankey, M., Birch, D., & Gardiner, M. (2010). Engaging students through multimodal learning environments. In C. Steel, M. J. Keppell, & P. Gerbic (Eds.), Curriculum, technology and transformation for an unknown future: Proceedings ascilite Sydney 2010 (pp. 852–863).Google Scholar
  37. Sanningen om Marika/The truth about Marika. (2007). published by Sverges Television (SVT) and The company P.Google Scholar
  38. Siegel, M. (1995). More than words: The generative power of transmediation for learning. Canadian Journal of Education, 20(4), 455–475.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Sir Robinson, K. (2012). Keynote at AERO 2012 conference.Google Scholar
  40. Sternberg, R. J., & Sternberg, K. (2011). Cognitive psychology (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.Google Scholar
  41. Tapscott, D. (2008). Grown up digital. New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  42. Teske, P., & Horstman, T. (2012). Transmedia in the classroom: Breaking the fourth wall. In Proceeding of the 16th International Academic Mindtrek Conference. New York: ACM.Google Scholar
  43. The Nielsen Company. Accessed December 13, 2012, from
  44. Vogler, C. (1992). The writers journey: Mythic structure for writers. Studio City, CA: Michael Wiese Productions.Google Scholar
  45. Vyas, D., & van der Veer, G. C. (2006). Experience as meaning: some underlying concepts and implications for design. In Proceedings of the 13th Eurpoean conference on Cognitive ergonomics: Trust and control in complex socio-technical systems (ECCE 06) (pp. 81–91). New York: ACM.Google Scholar
  46. Zhang, X., & Urchurtu, E. (2011). A user experience perspective of design for context-aware adaption. In Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Intelligent Environments. IEEE.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sabiha Ghellal
    • 1
    Email author
  • Annika Wiklund-Engblom
    • 2
  • Ann Morrison
    • 4
  • Damjan Obal
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Mobile MediaStuttgart Media UniversityStuttgartGermany
  2. 2.MediaCityÅbo Akademi UniversityVasaFinland
  3. 3.Department of Architecture, Design and Media TechnologyAalborg UniversityAalborgDenmark
  4. 4.Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer ScienceUniversity of MariborMariborSlovenia

Personalised recommendations