Genius.com was formerly the music wiki RapGenius, but it’s now open to a series of genres, including literature, film, history, and law. Genius’s tagline is “annotate the world” — anyone can annotate any line of text (and, soon, any kind of image), using not only words but also images, videos, and music. Users can create pages of text that can be tagged and linked to other texts and related issues. Genius admins can construct “tag pages” and postlets that essentially work like multimodal, interactive, editable syllabi. I’ve been hacking it to have my students make DIY Anthologies.
I propose a session where we gather together and play with the concept of “annotating the world” using Genius. We’ll call this a teach/play session, since I’ll be ready to familiarize people with Genius and to show them how to make DIY Anthologies (if there’s interest), but I’m also interested in learning about other possibilities for the site.
Here are a few ideas we might explore further:
- Annotating the rhetoric of city spaces — like memorials in Ferguson — and landmarks
- Using Genius to create interactive, multimodal timelines
- Annotating artwork (when the feature becomes available)
- Crowdsourcing digital syllabi
- Transnational (or at least cross-country!) classrooms — where students in multiple states read the same texts and then annotate collectively
- Using Genius to foster undergraduate research (and ethical citation practices)
No coding is required to use Genius.
Annotate the world!