Innovation in 2017

Introducing trans-media: Journalism’s New Face

Written by Alanah Frost

The collaboration of multimedia/trans-media journalism fast-becoming a popular and effective means of modern journalism. The ability to tell a story using a number of different, engaging and interactive platforms keeps the reader interested and makes news (or journalism) fun – an aspect that nowadays, is often overlooked.

Multi/trans-media journalism has been adopted by many news outlets around the globe (the ABC and New York Times notable standouts) and is creating a new-wave of storytelling. Here’s a few key points:

COMBINING text, video and audio allows trans-media to combine the three essential elements of presenting news. Visually stimulating and engaging, trans-media appeals to a larger audience at the one time, covering all mediums. The ABC and New York Times recently collaborated to produce a trans-media feature called ‘Australia Through American Eyes’ which, through the eyes of a NYT journalist, follows the stories of three remotely-located millennial in rural Australia. The story is effective as it not only tells a story, but adds human faces to the piece with photos and videos of local residents – all of whom have faced personal tragedy or adversity.

PARRALAX SCROLLING (when you scroll through a website or article and the text moves independently of the background) is a new and common feature of trans-media storytelling. This creative adaptation is an eye-catching and modern feature that actually emphasises a story’s storytelling ability. The use of photos of videos in the background of a text enhances what is being said in the foreground – painting a clearer picture for the reader. Again, the New York Times featured another Australian piece called ‘Through The Outback’, which is a somewhat rare insight (at least for many American’s) into the Australian outback and told primarily through incredible photos. Parralax scrolling allows the photos to speak as a sequence and tell a story, aided by the occasional use of writing for wider information.

Both stories are perfect examples of how journalists are thinking outside the traditional square of journalism to create a new realm that is engaging and exciting. A lot can be said for the finer details and the ability for the reader to connect with the story in a different way.

About the author

Alanah Frost