Cutting with QR Codes 09/30/12

A multi-platform content creation hack. 

Our October Workflow Whisperer Robert Pratten suggested an interesting hack this week that we wanted to spitball.

As he explains during this first week of transmedia fundamentals, creating media for these types of video projects is collaborative and scrappy. When I asked him about possible editorial hacks, he wondered what the process would look like if it wasn’t confined to one edit suite.

Let’s say a trailer for a film is cut as usual. But instead of being released as a finished product, it’s released in pieces and distributed to a pre-determined geographical area. These snippets of video, graphics, and music wouldn’t be lying around on thumbdrives.

That’s old school.

Instead, these trailer elements would be encoded using QR Codes. Participants in this ARG-styled media scavenger hunt would then be encouraged to canvas this specified area and find all of the trailer parts. These parts would be downloaded from YouTube and cut together. The trailer that has all the parts or is cut in the most imaginative way would then be selected as the official trailer for the franchise.

While the trailer for the Jejune Institute wasn’t cut in this way, it perfectly illustrates the primacy of discovery in ARG.

Games of Nonchalance from Nonchalance on Vimeo.

Granted, fans have been doing fanvid mashups for years but they’ve been doing it without the original assets. They’ve had to rip DVDs or transcode other compressed delivery formats.

By contrast, record labels and music producers have a far easier time with crowd-sourced remix contests. They can often give fans the original assets because audio files are so much smaller.

But with the vast improvements of broadband speeds and video compression, the concept of “gamifying an edit” is now possible.

How would you convert your trailer parts into QR codes?

On 708Media they have a quick 4-step process that shows you how to do this. Essentially, it shows you how to link QR codes to assets you’ve uploaded to YouTube. The open source QR code generator is recommended. And with YouTube supporting resolution up to 4K you could potentially give your participants high-quality assets.

Has anyone done this sort of thing? What are the pros and cons of using QR codes?




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