If you like think tank talks about the future, you would probably like the MIT CMS/C3 Futures of Entertainment Conference taking place this weekend. Registration is closed, alas:

As advertisers look for new ways to engage audiences, content creators search for new audiences, and audiences quest for new ways to connect with culture, the nature of what counts as ‘entertainment’ is rapidly changing. We are seeing the blurring of aesthetic and technological distinctions between media platforms, of ‘advertising’ and ‘content’ and of ‘creator’ and ‘consumer’. Futures of Entertainment brings together key industry leaders who are shaping these new directions in our culture. The conference will consider developments such as user-generated content, transmedia storytelling, the rise of mobile media and the emergence of social networking.

Futures of Entertainment is free and open to the public. Registering ensures a place at the conference if attendance exceeds capacity, so please only register if you will be attending. If the number of registrants exceeds capacity, registration will be closed.

Now why are we mentioning this here? Because of one of the panelists:

Transmedia Properties

Panelists: Paul Levitz, Michael Lebowitz, Alex Chisholm

The cultural logic of convergence lends itself to a flow of narratives, characters, and worlds across media platforms. Moving beyond older models based on liscensed ancillary products, transmedia extensions are now seen as expanding the opportunities for storytelling, enabling new kinds of entertainment experiences, building up secondary characters or backstory. Transmedia extension may also create alternative openings for different market segments and enable more extensive contact with brands. The great potential of transmediation is to deepen audience engagement, but this requires greater awareness of the specific benefits of working within different platforms. How are media companies organizing the development of transmedia properties? How are storytellers taking advantage of the “expanded canvas” such an approach offers? How do transmedia strategies impact the new integration between brands and entertainment properties? What new expectations do transmedia properties place on consumers?

Now that should be interesting.