FAQ’s

About the Viral Sockpuppets Press

About the Game

Terminology

Character design & development on YouTube

About the Viral Sockpuppets Press:

  1. What is this site? The official blog/news/information outlet for the Viral Sockpuppets Interactive Collaborative Story-Making Game.
  2. Who moderates the game? The Viral Sockpuppets Press
  3. Who is Dana Rollins? The host of the “Viral Sockpuppets Press News Brief”
  4. Who designed the game? The game was designed for Blight Productions by Brian A. Bernhard

About the Game:

  1. How do you play? Please click here for the official rules of play.
  2. How can I participate? Anyone that has a good idea, has filled out the VSP application and an account on YouTube.
  3. What do I win? The role of protagonist and the opportunity to show off your best storytelling chops to a really fun interactive audience.
  4. How do I win? As you post response videos to the current protagonist, the audience will choose which response video should inform the narrative. The first player to win the public vote twice within the same chapter will win the round.
  5. How many players can play/submit videos? Anyone can play and submit videos as long as you have filled out the VSP application form here. However, only the top ten most popular submissions will be included in the “Viral Sockpuppets Press New Brief”.
  6. Why is this a game for YouTubers and not everyone else? Anyone can participate in the Viral Sockpuppets as long as you have a strong desire to participate in a collaborative story, however YouTubers already have accounts on YouTube which will allow them to use the voting mechanic, as well as enabling certain annotated functions some of the videos may contain, they are already interested in producing video content and have the minimum technical skills required to create and post a video response.
  7. If I don’t make a response video every time, will I be “kicked out” of the game? No, if you are not the protagonist, you can make response videos as often as every week or every other week. The more you play, the more fun you will have and the more likely you will win the role of protagonist. However, if you are the protagonist, you will need to make your response video within one week following the announcement of the winning story idea. If you miss the deadline, the Viral Sockpuppets Press reserves the rights to either extend your deadline or reboot the narrative by writing your character out of the story. If you become lazy, as they say in Hollyweird, “The show must go on!”

Terminology:

  1. What is “collaborative story-making”? “Collaborative story-making” is a process of developing narrative with collective contributions and ideas from a group of creative thinkers. However, in the context of this game, it is more of an “Exquisite Corpse” type of mechanic in which a many players come up with interesting suggestions and the collective consciousness (the audience) chooses which suggestion will continue the narrative
  2. What is “Interactive Narrative”? “Interactive narrative” is a story experience where the audience has some kind of active agency and influence on how the story experience unfolds.
  3. What is a “protagonist”? A “protagonist” is defined by Dictionary.com as the leading character, hero, or heroine of a drama or other literary work. A “protagonist” in the context of the “Viral Sockpuppets” is the main character of the narrative thread. He or she is the character that all the other players respond to, and the one whose “story-world” is decided upon by the audience.
  4. Who is a “YouTuber”? A “YouTuber” is anyone making videos, uploading them to YouTube, and actively participating with the community by commenting, rating, and posting response videos.
  5. What is a “sockpuppet”? Generally a “sock puppet” is when you stick a normal “every day” foot sock on your hand and personify it by moving your hand inside the sock as if it were speaking with a mouth, but on the Internet and in the context of this game a “Sockpuppet” (Notice that there is no space between the words here) is when someone develops a fake identity on the Internet in order to create fiction or alter the truth.

Character design & development on YouTube:

  1. What are the 6 YouTube archetypes?
    1. The Reality Vlogger is a user with a channel full of first-person style short documentaries detailing their daily lives. They bring a camera with them wherever they go and narrate events, such as going to amusement parks, shopping at the mall or documenting family outings. These videos have generally no budget and lots of fast paced jump cuts.
    2. The Tutor is a video maker specializing in some form of educational tutorial.  Often they have slightly higher budgets then the average YouTuber because of product placement within their videos. They have been known to use sexuality and comedy to attract viewers.
    3. The Conspiracy Theorist is generally a low/no budget YouTuber that develops content with only a computer web camera. The content generally consists of paranoid delusions and grandiose theories of some “Man” that is some how “Out to get him or her”.
    4. The Political Pundit is a disillusioned citizen of some voting demographic that feels the need to create videos in support of their political party or to slander the integrity of their opposing political party. A general rule of thumb for these users is that they are against whatever political party happens to be in power at the time. If they are always in conflict with the government they will always have some sort of conflict to talk about.
    5. The Celebrity Sucker is one of the most disrespected, yet extremely popular users on YouTube. The content published to this kind of channel is generally ripped off and recycled from other sources. The goal is to gain notoriety, popularity, and subscribers from siphoning off the success of other more original content creators. This user rarely develops any original creative content and if they do it is usually some kind of embarrassing celebrity stalking exploitation paparazzi clip.
    6. The Entertainer is one of the most respected users within the YouTube community. This type of channel generally creates only original content, often comedy based, sometime dramatic, but usually with no other agenda than to entertain the audience. However, this user has the most difficult time building a large subscription base and receives the most negative feedback when a video does not have a decent budget and is not very well produced.

If you have a question that was not covered in the FAQ, please ask it in the comments section below and it will be answered here.

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