Transmedia storytelling uses different ways to circulate and exchange information between media properties. It not only shares and integrates information on various platforms to gain more popularity, but also improves media’s cooperation, coexistence, interaction and coordination. Current technologies provide distinct and diverse forms of media and the same story is usually delivered on every media channel from an unique perspective and form, example include but not limited to radio, television, newspaper and Internet etc., among which Internet has achieved it’s priority due to its enormous amount of information capacity and convenience to the audience. Since most traditional communications media including telephone, music, film, and television are being reshaped or redefined by the Internet, most media use Internet as an important component to build their transmedia storytelling framework.
In China, I am a Singer has become one of the most popular TV shows on the air. This TV show is extremely hot that you can hear Chinese people talking about it everywhere, not matter on their private parties or during work time in corporation conference. I first knew the show from Sina Weibo, a Chinese microblogging website, where I am a Singer has an official account registered in order to promote its brand, communicate with audiences and update the latest status about the singers through microposts such as short sentences, individual images, or video links. Later after I saw some of the live videos posted on Weibo, I was deeply attracted and started digging more information on the show. The official Weibo website of I am a singer introduces the show in a comprehensive way and uses combinations of pictures, HD digital audios from the show, interview with the singer and even gossips and grapevines of the producers. The following print is a screenshot from I am a Singer‘s Weibo homepage, as it shows those Chinese stars who has joined in the show, and you can see that the official account has attracted more than 16,294,557 fans (left corner middle column), and now I am one of them, excitedly opening my eyes wide to expect any updates from the show.
Weibo plays not only the role of an extension of its “mother” media but also serves as an independent source of information. For example, the Weibo website about this show placed many of the participants’ news, character and personal anecdotes as well and many of those information like personal videos are never showed on TV episodes. You can also post comments or criticism on the Weibo websites where the interaction on traditional media is almost impossible. Sometimes the website will put manifold surveys regarding to the show to encourage the participation of its audience such as the following screenshot asking people to vote for the singer they like the most. It proposed the satisfactory survey on a particular singer by asking: “If you are not able to listen to ___’s singing every day, will you feel unhappy?”
In addition to the official Weibo website for the TV show, I am a singer also has a post bar, a combination of forum and bulletin board, for netizens to post whatever they like regarding to the show. In the post bar, you can see many people have different viewpoints and express their opinions and put comments in it. Even it has many advertisements about other shows and movies and some of the participants’ gossip, it’s still relatively regulated and everybody enjoys the platform it provides. Personally speaking, I think the Weibo account is more useful to the show than the post bar since it tells more about the show other than personal opinions. The picture below shows some information of the post like the first is an advertisement about the sales of the tickets and the second is a gossip on one of the show’s competitor. Comparatively, the Weibo website doesn’t have this type of information, and it just put official messages regarding the show.