How Technology Can Shape Storytelling

The Paradoxes of Living in the Information Age


ls information ageJoe Sabia, head of development at Condé Nast Entertainment, gave a TED talk in 2011 about technology and storytelling. The takeaway is simple: stories haven’t changed all that much over the history of storytelling. How we tell them, on the other hand, changes constantly.

Before the Internet, we kept our life stories in journals and letters, and we told stories to remember our loved ones. We assembled photo albums that were passed on from one generation to the next.

Today, it’s possible to let the world know exactly what you’re doing at 9:23 in the morning on a Tuesday by posting from your cell phone. And a year later, Facebook will remind you of it.

Books have become e-books, read on portable devices smaller than one book, yet capable of storing hundreds. Television isn’t just available on the television set anymore — it’s happening on the Internet, meaning you can watch it from phones, laptops, and tablets.

Technology has changed the landscape of storytelling. Stories don’t look the way they did even just 10 years ago, let alone 20, 50, or 100. But at the same time, technology has been a great equalizer. Whether you want to reach out to the entire globe or just keep in touch with relatives living half a world away, you can do so with the power of technology.

The written word and photographs are staples of storytelling, and while they haven’t gone away, they do look a bit different.

For example, voice dictation software can let you write without ever having to pick up a pen — or having to type out your thoughts. Whether you keep a private journal online or post your thoughts on a blog where anyone can read, you can lay out your ideas with ease.

And in place of family photo books, online photo albums can help you preserve memorable events. Facebook has this feature, but for a more comprehensive storage option there are services like Photobucket, Picasa, and Flickr. You can create albums and share them with the entire family over email, embed the links in your blog, and more.

Video, too, is easier than ever to use. Even smartphones can record high-definition video clips of baby’s first steps, a grandchild’s graduation, and more. Some devices even let you edit the video right there, without having to upload anything. Just a few taps and you can send the video to anyone you want.

In some cases, you can even combine media to create slideshows and videos. With the right software, a good supply of photos, some music and a microphone, you can create a beautiful presentation of someone’s entire life or celebrate a particular milestone.

The Internet can feel like a large, impersonal space, but at the same time, it offers tools to preserve your legacy and tell your own personal tale. LegacyShield’s My Life Stories does just that. The unique storytelling format helps you record everything from where you were born and childhood memories to the important events that shaped your worldview and guided your decisions. You can add to it as you and your family celebrate important milestones, too!

Technology is constantly changing how we tell our stories — and in many ways, making it easier to pass our stories onto the next generation and preserve our memories for years and years to come. But the stories themselves haven’t changed all that much. That is the thread that connects us with the next generation of storytellers, the ones who will be sharing their tales in formats we might not even recognize.

The paradox of access to information is the ease of which it can be lost.  This is yet one of the paradoxes of living in the information age. LegacyShield is here to help solve that paradox.

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