August 24, 2010


There's a new application called Storify that's in private user testing right now, and it promises to be an interesting way of assembling stories online. That's right: assemble, not necessarily write.

According to the demo, Storify allows users to curate social media posts, such as tweets, YouTube videos, and other links, to create a narrative about a current event or conference.

Here's the video:

Storify demo from Burt Herman on Vimeo.

It's easy to see immediate applications, especially when trying to filter content from noise on a specific hash tag.

But let's step away from intended use for a moment and think about new narrative possibilities. Imagine this as a tool for fiction. You could extract a story told through tweets and easily share it with those who aren't on Twitter, so this becomes a new method of publication or distribution for a short work. You could assemble a digital dérive, combining tweets with images and video. Even more radical, you could put together an entire story without writing a single line of it by piecing together items found on the web and then publishing the compilation. The interface is simple enough to permit a gap between intention and openness, so there's ample room for appropriation and play.

If you try out Storify for fiction, let me know. I'd love to see what you create.


  1. Thanks for the heads up on this new app. It looks very cool.

  2. You're welcome! I apologize for the late response -- email notifications were turned off.