Digital storytelling has arisen as a form of narrative expression that is crafted into a media production. While there appears to be general agreement that digital storytelling integrates meaningful stories with media, and characteristics of digital stories have been described, the definition of and purpose for digital storytelling remains somewhat open to interpretation. Even more unclear is how the growing array of interactive Web 2.0 video-sharing technologies are being used to facilitate digital storytelling. This paper presents a pilot study conducted to begin learning how digital storytelling is manifesting on YouTube, which is currently the most widely used of all video-sharing services. A relevance sample of 100 digital stories was obtained from YouTube. The videos were analyzed to determine how closely they match published characteristics of digital stories and to what extent interactive features of YouTube were utilized. Results indicated variation among the stories in terms of adherence to the classic model and the media elements used. Interactive tools such as ratings, comments, and video responses were used, but not extensively.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/chareen_snelson/49/