Transmedia concepts can be considered in one of two basic forms. Top-down, where the Transmedia expression of a narrative is handled by one single, large, corporate source. This form often falls under the broad header of fanagement (Hills, 2012). Fanagement is where there is an expectation that fans will create, but the transmedia product is being created by a central source, with an absolute control. In transmedia with fanagement, control is important, and products created within that transmedia sphere are created by a corporate-level entity.
Naturally, Twine is not something that’s going to appeal to this kind of produsage.
Twine is the best tool for the job if you have no better tools. Therefore, the place you’re going to find Twine is from the fanbase upwards, rather than from a corporate source downwards. Thanks to Twine’s utility, it’s best as a form of produsage – which means if you’re going to see a Twine game as a part of a transmedia experience, it will probably come from produsage sources.
Can Twine be transmedia? Of course it can. It’s a written medium. A webcomic could have a twine game. A webseries could have a Twine game. But… it almost certainly won’t be something that shows up in a source with a fanagement strategy. Twine is a tool for the many, for the distributed and individual, and therefore, a tool for fans.
Twine is a creature of Web 2.0, a period when consumers become part of the wall of produsage. You can look to the explosion of sources like Harry Potter (Leogrande, 2012) – a media form whose marketing and release is timed wonderfully (if accidentally) to coincide with Web 2.0’s growth – and see this same pattern. There weren’t fans making ninety-minute movies of the Harry Potter story, expanding its canon. They were making text files and card games and fan comics. It’s into that niche that Twine falls: Creation by people who yearn to create without gatekeepers and without demands.
- Hills, Matt. “Torchwood‟ s trans-transmedia: Media tie-ins and brand „fanagement‟.” Participations. Journal of Audience & Reception Studies 9.2 (2012): 409-428.
- Leogrande, Cathy. “From the Sorcerer’s Stone to the Magic Quill: Transmedia Storytelling and the Potterverse.” Magic is Might 2012 (2013).