COM0014: Blog #2- Storytelling

Storytelling surrounds us every day. Whether it’s your co-worker’s latest weekend escapade, the Netflix series that you’re currently binging, or scrolling through your various social media feeds everyone has something to say. How they say it is the real draw in though. Especially when it comes to the internet. There are so many stories and voices clogging up the web, that getting yours noticed almost seems like winning the lottery. Being able to captivate and engage an audience right in front of you is one thing but drawing people in from the other side of a computer screen, with only your words, is a whole other beast.

What I learned this week is the storytelling that catches the most attention and makes people clink the link instead of scrolling on by, is open and honest. It strikes a chord with its audience because it’s relatable and stirs something within those consuming it. The words don’t need to be perfectly crafted, but it does need to have heart.  Given how cold and impersonal digital platforms can be, audiences want to feel like they’re being invited in and really getting to know the creator.

Another take away I have is the importance of accountability in storytelling, especially when it comes to digital content. Everyone has access right at their fingertips to a proverbial soapbox where they can air their thoughts and opinions all hours of the day. Unlike traditional media where the onus lies with the storyteller to fact check what they are publishing now that responsibility has shifted to the audience. With so much content to take in, it’s important to be able to take it all ‘with a grain of salt.’ As we move towards a world that I can only imagine will become more saturated with digital content, we need to be able to distinguish what is truth and what is likely just hearsay from your cousin’s, girlfriend’s, hairdresser’s neighbour 3 doors down. 

Storytelling can be a powerful tool for any online content creator to master but clearly one that needs to be used responsibly.  

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