Digital Storytelling

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Digital Storytelling is a short form of digital media that allows everyday people to share aspects of their life through a combination of text, pictures, audio clips etc. There are two key concepts that all digital stories must have. The first being that each story must be nonlinear, meaning that it jumps around and does not tell you where to begin. The second being that each medium must be complementary. This means that the new information is important and brought in different ways.

Digital storytelling is also known as a multimedia story. Some advantages that follow are it 1. Provides background information on a story, 2. It provides graphics and other forms of interesting appeal to the story, 3. It is able to gain feedback from viewers.

There are various free tools used for digital storytelling. Some of which include:

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  1. Animoto– This tool features unlimited videos. It takes just a few minutes to create a video or presentation. It is able to incorporate images, video clips, music and text. 
  2. Bubblr– It is a tool that enables you to create a comic strip using photos from a flickr account.
  3. Capzles– This is a tool that allows you to create a multimedia platform bring your stories together with videos, photos, music, blogs and documents.
  4. Cartoonist– This tool is able to create cartoons or personal digital stories consisting of professional backgrounds, characters, props, images, and text. It is great for creating personal narratives.
  5. Comic Master– Allows you to creat your own short graphic novel. This tool allows you to decided how you want the page to look, allows for background choices, chooses characters and props and dialogue or captions.
  6. Domo Animate– Allows you to import pictures and add music.
  7. Generator- A space where you can explore the moving image and share your creations with others.
  8. MakeBeliefsComix– Create your own comic strip where you have options for characters and emotions. Able to add colored backgrounds, objects and panels.
  9. MapSkip– Creates a weave of stores which mark up places in Google Maps with stores and photos.
  10. PicLits– Great tool for creative writing that matches images with keywords.
  11. Pixton– Communicates graphically with comics.
  12. Slidestory– Combines pictures and narration to make a presentation to share.
  13. Smilebox– Quick way to create slideshows, invitations, greetings, collages, scrapbooks and photo albums from your computer.
  14. Smories.com– Published stories for kids.
  15. Storybird– Visual stories that curate artwork from illustrators and animators.
  16. Zimmer Twins– Site devoted to kids and creative storytelling.
  17. ZooBurst– Tool that lets anyone create his or her own 3D pop up book.
  18. Puppet Pals– Shows with animation and audio.
  19. ShowMe Interactive Whiteboard– Tool that allows you record voice over whiteboard tutorials and share them online.
  20. Sock Puppets– Tool that incorporates lip synced videos and share them on Facebook and YouTube.
  21. Toontastic– Tool that enables children to draw, animate and share their own cartoons with friends and family.

There are a variety of other useful tools for digital storytelling. All of which are previously listed are free, easy to use and do what they say they will.

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Digital Tools for Journalists

One remarkable invention, Jelly, was created in April 2013 and was founded by Biz Stone and Ben Finkel. It is an app that is available for purchase on the Apple app store. Jelly allows you to ask questions about anything to anyone of your friends that you are connected with you from other social media sites. This mobile application uses photos, interactive maps, locational settings, and communication tactics. It has a camera feature where you are able to just point and shoot and snap a photo to then share with people and ask questions like, “What is this building?” Within a matter of minutes, someone’s answer will appear.

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 11.04.40 AMThe creators chose the jellyfish to represent their product because the application uses a loose network of nerves that act as the “brain.” The idea of jelly was to be able to help people no matter where you are or what you’re doing. It is an amazing tool to use that I recently just learned about. It is also a fantastic device for Journalists because they are constantly on the move and need to be able to collect as much information as possible at the fastest rate that they can find it.

Another great tool is Storify. This media was launched in September 2010. This social media tool is very similar to a blog, however, it is much simplier and allows you to tell a story while incorporating other forms of social media into your story. You are able to search through various networks and then choose whichever article, picture or quote you would like to add into your story to make it stronger. It connects to numerous media handles like: Instagram, Twitter, Flickr, Youtube, Google, Facebook etc.

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Many organizations and news businesses use Storify to write about events going on. It is highly recommended to be used to cover social events, breaking news, humor, conversations, weather forcasts and more. It was created to allow users to create stories from collecting various forms of media into a timeline theme. It is great for journalists because they can enter their thoughts and opinions and receive feedback from fans who want to pull information from them and vise versa.

A third great digital tool that is used by Journalists is called Instapaper. I recently just heard about this helpful innovation. It was founded in 2008 by Marco Arment and already reached over 2 million users in 2011. It is a device that allows you to save web pages to read later on a user’s Android, iOS device, smartphone, computer or ereader.

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 11.06.01 AMThe greatest convience about this tool is that all your articles that you want to save are all combined into a nice, organized file where you can create different tabs. A new feature that is now available is the highlighter. You can highlight anything as you go along which is easy to store, retrieve, quote and share later on.

This tool is extremely practical for a Journalist because it helps keep them organized when they are searching for all of their information before writing an article.