After reading this week’s articles, I came to the conclusion that storytelling in an interactive environment can mean there is not one main author who is taking the audience along for the ride. Rather, there is a blurry line between the role of author, and the role of audience. In fact, in some examples, the participants alternated between roles, feeding off of each other’s contributions. Does this make interactive storytelling better than traditional forms of storytelling? Not necessarily. Just different. I think there are pros and cons to both formats. In an interactive environment, I can jump around between different characters, topics of interest, media formats (text, video, audio), etc. However, as others have pointed out, the narrative may not be as developed, or I may find grammatical errors in the writing.
As for its impact on academic writing and argument, I think if we can be open-minded to storytelling in an interactive environment, we may find new and innovative ways of presenting scholarly ideas without reducing the quality of the content or limiting the scope of the discussions that stem from the introduction of the topic. I’m sure there are academic sites based on area of expertise where participants act as both presenter and critic, featuring forums for discussion and refinement of ideas. Since most scholars require to be published, this would be a great way to get feedback from peers at a global level.
Finally, I thought the article Before Every Child Is Left Behind really hit home with several of the discussions we’ve had in class recently. It addressed the need for innovative thinking, the lack of innovative education going on in the classroom, the difficulty of working epistemic games into a curriculum focused on standardized teaching and testing, and how devastating this will be to the future of our nation. I felt like I was reading a future chapter from a history book that describes how the U.S. fell from grace as a superpower. Unfortunately, I don’t think the government is in tune enough to recognize and address the issue in a timely fashion. Their mainstay opinion appears to be that art, music, games and technology is fluff, not fundamental education. Instead, it will be up to the consumers and private industry to drive these changes. As Shaffer pointed out , this then links education to class, dividing the wealthy from the poor.