Four strategic questions to ask yourself when planning digital storytelling projects

Asking yourself these four questions should help you when strategically planning digital storytelling projects:

1. how will you address consents?
Privacy laws in the UK are more relaxed than in other countries like France. Setting laws to one side, ask yourself: if that was me/my child in that story, would I be happy? What will be the wording of your formal release form or contract which makes the storyteller’s consent explicit?

2. who will own the copyright of the finished stories and will exhibition licences be explicitly attached and will they be exclusive or non-exclusive licences? You can have the intellectual property resting with the storyteller, with a licence granted to you (the facilitator) so you can exhibit the work; or you can ask to keep the IP and give a non-exclusive licence back to the storyteller so they can share their story on various platforms or outlets.
Seems such a simple question; explore Creative Commons.

3. which media form are you asking people to make?
Here’s one of the ways we modelled the BBC Capture Wales form of the digital story, mainly aimed at trainers:
This is the Center for Digital Storytelling’s Cookbook:
Whichever form you encourage participants to make, do try to publish and share the documentation under open licence. The beauty of defining a form is that others will be free to stray away from it, but they have a framework from which to begin.

4. is sustainability important to you? Do you want the people you help make a digital story to go on to teach others to do the same? Planning digital storytelling projects to think about training the trainers sessions from an early stage will be useful.

Disclaimer: seek legal advice if in doubt about any of the above because I’m not a lawyer
Credit: distilled from working as a member of the Capture Wales team.

Steve Bellis presenting his Rural Stories

Written and first published by Gareth Morlais on  25 August 2010.

Digital storytelling on the high street

Wouldn’t it be great if you could pop in to get some expert help and make your own digital story while shopping in town? Well, during August 2010, if you’re lucky enough to live in Newcastle in the north-east of England, you can.  Culture Shop is Culture Shock‘s empty shop arts project which not only screens digital stories but also offers expert facilitation for people who’d like to make their own digital story. Some take their own photos to tell their story; others choose from a range of artifacts from museums and galleries of the  North East England.

I visited Culture Shop while we were visiting my wife’s friend Grainee in Newcastle this weekend. Grainee told us about the project and offered to take me to see the shop. I was bowled over – every high street should have a place like this to screen and produce digital stories. Culture Shock never ceases to impress me and their Culture Shop is fab.  What better way of increasing digital inclusion than a drop-in like this?

Exterior Culture Shop, Newcastle UK

Cath Walshaw of Culture Shock with a Roman helmet

Glamorgan GATES hiring digital storytelling tutor

Glamorgan GATES is looking for a digital storytelling tutor for its project. Thanks to Karen Lewis of StoryWorks for passing this on to me. Here’s the text of the message:

Glamorgan GATES is looking for a digital storytelling tutor for our project. Our current tutor is moving on. We have a core group of four/five older storytellers who are well skilled in digital storytelling but we are looking for someone who is knowledgeable and vibrant and will bring something new to the class and generate some new students. A recent graduate or postgraduate student would be ideal. We have approximately 5 hrs per week on offer.  

Please refer any interested people to me either via email or at the address below.Dr Lesley Hodgson, Curriculum Leader, GATIAU Morgannwg/Glamorgan GATESm 121 High St, Merthyr TydfilCF47 8BL01685 729941/0 CeLLPrifysgol Morgannwg/University of Glamorgan7 Forest GroveTrefforest/Treforest

CF37 1DL

Breaking Barriers is hiring three digital storytelling workers

Some great news: the Breaking Barriers Community Arts digital storytelling project, based in south-east Wales, has just had confirmation of funding from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust. This is of major importance to digital storytelling in Wales.

So now Breaking Barriers is recruiting three people to take the project on to its next strides between now and March 2012. As far as the duration of funding goes, Breaking Barriers’ Ruth Garnault says: “Part of the role of these posts, however, is to ensure the long-term viability of the organisation which will lead to the posts being extended.” Here are the recruitment details Ruth sent me:


Breaking Barriers Community Arts (BBCA) is recruiting 3 new posts to take this digital storytelling organisation to a new level. Funding for these posts has just been granted from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and ends in March 2012. Part of the role of these posts, however, is to ensure the long-term viability of the organisation which will lead to the posts being extended.

Project Manager who will drive the development of BBCA into a self-sustaining social enterprise.

Up to £24,000 pro rata. Initially 3 days per week, rising to 4 days a week from April 2011

Technical Administrator – a person who ensures the excellence of BBCA projects through their excellent knowledge of Mac-based IT.

Up to £19,000 pro rata. 1 day per week.

Administrative and Finance Officer to run an efficient and effective organisation

Up to £16,000 pro rata. 2 days per week.

Information and application form are attached or are available from

Deadline for return of applications: Friday 20  August 2010.

Interviews 1st 3rd September.