What was most interesting to me in Lesson 2, Becoming a Digital Storyteller was the discussion on the various types of readers – identified as Elementary, Inspectional, Analytical and Synotopical – and the encouragement offered to content creators to strive for that synotopical bullseye where readers form new insights and understandings based on the design and delivery of your content. I must admit, ‘syntopical’ was a new category of reader to me and initially struck me as a bit doe-eyed: Few would dispute the power of the written word in the age of the Internet, but is that state of enlightenment a realistic goal of the content creator, and consistent with how the majority of us use the Internet?
For me writing has always been about the audience, or more precisely, what we want of the audience. What we want them to understand, to believe, to act upon. It can change minds or break hearts, document our triumphs or the trajectory to the moon (though not usually in the same piece). But I had not until now thought of writing in a social media context much beyond informing, engaging or entertaining the audience. I suppose I thought social media too shallow a forum to enable readers to form new opinions and insight, or at least, those that would stay much beyond the next click.
I suppose social media just proved me wrong, and I have a new goal as a content creator.