“In participatory situations, game structure replaces aesthetics. Instead of events being worked out beforehand, there is a “game plan,” a set of objectives, moves, and rules that are generally known or explained. The game plan is flexible, adapting to changing situations. . . [In 1969,] I formulated three rules of participation:
The audience is in a living space and a living situation. Things may happen to and with them as well as ‘in front’ of them.
When a performer invites participation, he must be prepared to accept and deal with the spectator’s reactions.
Among many other important insights, Literat’s paper presents a concise breakdown of what she calls “The Levels of Artistic Participation,” identifying the affordances of “receptive,” “executory,” and “structural” participation via a series of contemporary and historical examples.
Literat’s analysis can provide critical designers with important tools for working through the many ethical and practical challenges presented by what I’m calling “participation design.” For theorists, students, and designers alike, this paper is not to be missed.
PEG-LA co-conspirator Sarah Brin is one of the coordinators of Revel, “a public invitation to participate in fun, social, and adventurous challenges on streetcorners, in parks, and in all parts of town. [The Revel] iPhone app organizes missions by type and by location, deepening your connection to your neighbors and your city.” Revel is looking for creatives to propose challenges that will be incorporated into the experience. From the call for participation:
WHO CAN PROPOSE A CHALLENGE?
Everyone! We’re looking for a broad range of missions in a variety of fields. Challenges can be as simple as a set of instructions written for one person, or more complex, involving multiple people in different roles. No technical knowledge is required.
CAN I PROPOSE MORE THAN ONE CHALLENGE?
Absolutely. Submit as many as you like under as many topic headings as you like.
We’re looking for challenges that relate to the following topics: Appreciation, Exploring, Fitness Training, Neighbors & Networks, Leadership, Photography, and Storytelling.
WHAT’S IN IT FOR ME?
Aside from excitement of giving tens of thousands of people an experience they won’t forget, there’s $20,000 in prize money available to the authors of the challenges that generate the highest number of positive experiences.
This collection (.pdf) of Fluxus “event scores” — instructions for performances, happenings, and interventions — is endlessly inspiring. I’m working on a (top secret) game right now that shares some of the same spirit…
16 Juin 2014 is a participatory transmedia event that took place in February of 2011. The project engaged the Tunisian public via a variety of platforms and interactions in playfully imagining the country’s post-revolution future. 16 Juin 2014 was spearheaded by ad agency Memac Ogilvy Label:
Memac Ogilvy Label decided to show everyone how bright Tunisia’s future could be if everyone all started building it now. The agency convinced six brands and five major Tunisian media outlets (one radio, one television, two newspapers and one online magazine) to participate in the June 16th 2014 campaign. During a whole day, the media acted as if it were June 16th 2014 and presented Tunisia as a prosperous, modern and democratic country. To further engage people, the agency launched a hashtag on Twitter [#16juin2014] and 16juin2014.com, a website with all the content and where people could share their own vision of the future. (The Inspiration Room)