For the first time, an exhibition of immersive and interactive narratives has arrived in Brazil. MOSTRA BUG brought more than 30 projects from around the world to Rio De Janeiro between Aug. 14 and Sept. 11.
From interactive documentaries to non-fiction virtual reality, new technologies are giving content creators new ways to tell stories.
Journalists and documentary filmmakers can create engaging narratives, but immersive and interactive stories do even more, putting the audience in a powerful position to decide which multimedia content they want to view, and in which order. It is a non-linear narrative where the viewer can go anywhere through an interface that invites him or her to participate.
During the exhibition, André Paz and Julia Salles, curators of MOSTRA BUG, listed the top — and most-affordable — tools for creating interactive and immersive stories.
One of the most popular tools for interactive editing and publishing is Klynt. The software’s interface resembles a video editor and offers the opportunity to create and link videos, images, text, interactive graphics and more, in a non-linear format.
The audience navigates through the content based on the order that he or she wants to see it. Creators don’t need to know how to code in order to use Klynt, they can still create a story in a very intuitive software interface.
The software costs EUR499 but they have a cheaper license for students and universities, which only costs EUR49 for individual students or EUR2499 for a campus with unlimited licenses.
“Women for sale” is an interactive documentary about human trafficking in Argentina in which viewer can browse the stories of these women by type of media —such as photos, maps or videos — or by navigating through the stages of trafficking — including stages such as "recruitment" and "exploration." The project won numerous awards.
“Women for sale” was developed by DocuMedia, a group created by the Multimedia Department at Rosario University in Argentina to produce social multimedia journalism.
Korsakow, released in 2000, was one of the first softwares designed for people who don’t know much about coding to create interactive projects. The creator uploads the multimedia files into the software, and the viewer can navigate through the content in a way that is similar to navigating files stored on a computer or database.
This software is free for small, individual projects. For larger projects, it costs US$299 for a single user for an unlimited amount of time, but students can access it for US$59.
An example of film made using Korsakow is The Border Between Us by Nicole Robicheau. It is an interactive documentary about two border towns, Stanstead, Canada and Derby Lina, U.S. It follows the routine of twelve people and their communities after the terrorist attacks in New York on September 11, 2001. Each video has three more embedded video options to watch, based on the order the viewer decides.
RacontR is a software that allows filmmakers, journalists and other storytellers to build interactive stories without any coding knowledge. Users can upload multimedia content like video, audio and photos, transforming it into an interactive web production or even an app. Abeta version to create VR productions is also available.
The regular rate is EUR500 per month for one user, but NGOs and startups can buy it for EUR200 per month for one user, and universities are also eligible for a discount.
RacontR has been working mostly with French-speaking media companies and organizations. For example, Passeport pour l’aventure, an interactive documentary series about adventure seekers, was created by French radio station France Bleu using RacontR software. The audience chooses which story to watch first and scrolls and clicks through audio, videos, images and more, exploring each character’s adventure.