“Transmedia storytelling represents a process where integral elements of a fiction get dispersed systematically across multiple delivery channels for the purpose of creating a unified and coordinated entertainment experience. Ideally, each medium makes it own unique contribution to the unfolding of the story” (Jenkins, 2007)
Transformers is one of the most well known Transmedia success stories. Transformers started out as kids action figures. They then decided to direct content flow multidirectional. This rapid flow of content allowed Transformer to spread across cultural borders. Originating in Japan; comics, cartoons, websites and blockbuster movies were then further produced and expanded the world of Transformers specifically targeting the western market. This integration into different media types allowed the Transformers brand to diversify and breakthrough into the global market.
“Transformers started in 1984 with the release of the first comics and toys for the G1 line. Hasbro started out by releasing in North America toys which had been available for a few years in Japan but had previously sold poorly in the USA. The following year, the line was launched in Japan, where the American year one and two toys were smooshed into just one year of releases. Later in its life, the Transformers G1 line began producing new products which were specifically designed for it, ending (in North America at least) in 1990 amidst an avalanche of Micromasters and Action Masters“. (Stonebraker, 2005)
BitTorrent is able to supply through its peer to peer sharing, a distribution channel that allows Transformers, a transmedia narrative to reach its intended audience. Transformers movies, comics and images are all available to download off BitTorrent’s site. This media platform targets specifically the movie franchise of Transformers and allows the widespread distribution of the film. There is however a negative impact of this distribution, BitTorrent breaches copyright issues and therefore the movie is available to download for free. Whilst the franchise increases its popularity, it is also losing profit.
Jenkins, H. (2007) ‘Transmedia Storytelling 101’, http://henryjenkins.org/2007/03/transmedia_storytelling_101.html, Accessed 28 April, 2014
Attribution-ShareAlike (2014) ‘Transformerswiki’, http://tfwiki.net/wiki/Main_Page, Accessed 28 April, 2014
Stonebraker, S. (2005) ‘Steve-o’s Transformers FAQ Business and Franchise History > Franchise History’, http://www.physics.ohio-state.edu/~sstoneb/tf/faq/history/franchise.php, Accessed 28 April, 2014