Last year in my writing 125 class, we looked at “Writing Spaces”. One of the pieces we looked at specifically was a stunning example of digital rhetoric. Welcome to Pine Point (I recommend you go full screen for this one) is an interactive web-based documentary about the people and town of a former mining community in Canada. Essentially, it discusses a very niche topic. However, the interaction of the viewer clicking to carry through the story, as well as the in depth personal profiles and anecdotes, helps to impact a broader audience.
This multimodal piece employs aural, visual, gestural, linguistic, and (of course) spatial methods to provoke the audience. I had to catch myself from saying “reader” there. Because really, you need all the parts to get the entire message. The audience takes on the role of a reader, a listener, a viewer as well as a concerned bystander, a younger person listening to an elder relative, and a fellow nostalgic.
Now, this is a very specific example, and I noticed a lot of other people had more sweeping examples. To be honest, I’m kind of in love with this platform. It takes a while to get through, but that’s probably one of the points the author/designer was getting at–it’s strange to think of a whole town disappearing and only surviving in memory. That being said, does anyone know of any similar interactive web documentaries? I’d love to check them out.