The Media Explores the Message: In person and online workshop

This 6th Hypertext Literature Workshop is part of the HT02. It will be a one day workshop June 12th, 2002 with a two-hour corresponding online workshop. The online workshop is part of an ongoing series of online conferencing with electronic artists, writers, musicians and developers around the world.


In-person: About 15-30 participants who create, teach, and analyze new media literature. Participants will include writers, academics, research analysts, programmers, and others interested in new media development. Participants will be chosen as a result of a call for participation, and essay answers to that call. Criteria for participation will be that participants represent a broad range of interests in the field. Newcomers are welcome to balance our perspectives and add new ideas.

Online: About 20-50 participants from a wide variety of creative electronic fields. This meeting will be one in a series of meetings proposed at other conferences (Electronic Literature Organization (ELO) Symposium in April 2002, Incubation (trAce) July 15-17 2002, and International Society for Electronic Art (ISEA) in October 2002). The meeting will be advertised in many lists and newsletters for electronic art, music, and literature as part of an ongoing effort to foster collaboration and to spark new explorations in these increasingly intertwined fields.

Workshop theme and goals

New Media Literature provides a unique testing place for hypertext theories and concepts. New media writing explores content and contextual relationships between linking, imagery, navigation, structure, and motion to provide a richer set of meanings. Examining works in progress and critical techniques provide opportunities to see new techniques and to understand the impetus and implications behind new media writing.

In person: This workshop has an expanded focus to meet the needs of the broader HT02 audience and to reflect the divergent growth in hypertext literature to encompass new media literature. The goals are to further understand and develop new media literature by:

Online: This workshop is designed to bring together electronic developers and creators in a wide variety of disciplines to discuss the different approaches and philosophies for creating. The goal is to understand developments in other electronic creative fields and their implications for new media by:

Outcomes of the workshop

In person: This workshop is a part of an ongoing series of dialogues and communication for the electronic literature community, along with monthly chats at the Electronic Literature Organization/trAce. The workshop sparks ideas for future collaborations, projects, and other materials.

Online: The online chat will be edited and archived on the ELO and trAce sites as part of this ongoing discussion. It will provide a unique glimpse into the formative thinking of electronic creative art.


Description of activities planned


9:00 - 11:00 Morning session (Examining new works)

11:00 - 11:30 break

11:30 - 1:30 Online discussions

1:30 - 1:45 break

1:45 - 3:45 Afternoon session (Analyzing, teaching and criticism)

3:45 - 4:00 break

4:00 - 4:30 Tie it together session

Morning session: Examining new works. We need to understand the ways hypertext and new media writing is developing. What conventions are we using for new media writing? How are we showing meaning, characterization, plot, and other writing devices within the media itself? Participants will examine two new works in progress, chosen and disseminated before the workshop. Participants will suggest avenues for improvement and discuss the use of tools and techniques.

Afternoon session: Analyzing teaching and criticsm. We need to determine ways to adapt critical analyses to new media. How do you deal with issues of closure and thoroughness with works that do not show all their parts? Critical analyses need to show responses to readings, to support new explorations andnew discoveries. We will take one piece and discuss elements of the piece. Participants will be assigned the piece ahead of time (to look at code, graphics, text, sound, etc.). After a short discussion of the piece, we will examine the analyses and suggest ways to incorporate an intellectual, theoretical, and sensory toolset into analyzing and teaching new media literature.

Online session: Members of ISEA, FineArtsForum, Rhizome, NetArt, and other electronic creative communities would be invited to log on to participate. The chat would be in Lingua Moo so people can share links to work. The chat would be moderated, and would ask questions designed to foster relationships between online writers and artists such as:

How to apply

In person: You can apply for the workshop alone or attend the accompanying conference. To apply for the workshop, please send a brief issue paper covering the following points to Deena Larsen





If you would like to submit your work in progress for the morning session or a finished piece to analyse for the afternoon session, please provide a description of the work and a URL.