What Is a Digital Story?

The Lab isn’t all that interested in defining what constitutes digital stories or digital storytelling. We have an inclusive, interdisciplinary approach to digital stories: we would like to be the place on campus where students do new and cool and fun things with narrative and stories and digital technology, no matter what form that takes. question mark sculpture picture

However, we are very interested in how others define digital stories. Below are some resources that will provide a little more context about the various ways in which people have defined “digital storytelling.”

Know of a good take on digital storytelling? Comment below!


Center for Digital Storytelling – When you use the phrase “digital storytelling” a lot of people will think that you mean digital storytelling as it is defined by Joe Lambert from the Center for Digital Storytelling: “A short, first-person video-narrative created by combining recorded voice, still and moving images, and music or other sounds.”

Documenting the American South – In this page from their “Classroom” section, DocSouth explains the components of digital historical narratives. They define digital historical narratives as an adaptation of  Joe Lambert’s definition of digital storytelling; they describe or interpret historical events rather than focus on personal anecdotes.

Second Story – These folks run an “interactive studio” (read more here).  Their media projects are based in narrative and storytelling, but are powered by nonlinear interactivity. Creative Director Brad Johnson explains the idea behind Second Story: “The evolution of interactive media means the story no longer flows in one direction, from the one to the many. Through a framework of possibility that visitors use to weave their own story, the narrative is only visible in hindsight—when their path is revealed—the path that was their history, their story—that is the second story.”


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