Another new science fiction magazine has just joined the internet. Vice Magazine, which was already writing about science fiction via its excellent Motherboard site, has launched a SF mag called Terraform, with stories by Cory Doctorow and Bruce Sterling. But the interesting part is, they want to see more fiction go viral.
Terraform will post new stories every week, similar to a number of other web magazines. And just like Tor.com and some other online publishers, they'll mingle their fiction output with the articles and stuff on Motherboard. But their launch essay makes a point of saying that they hope these short-fiction pieces make it on to social media in a way that short fiction all too seldom does:
There are tons of great publishers of science fiction online—but still, it's strange that there isn't more fiction commingling with the newsy posts and personality quizzes and status updates tumbling down our feeds. We encourage the dissemination of information and storytelling in every conceivable way, be it listicles, data visualizations, video collages, tweetstorms, whatever. But when was the last time you saw a link to a short story shared on Facebook? The internet, it seems, doesn't know what to do with the stuff. Yet. We're going to give it a shot.
How are they going to do this? By "seiz[ing] upon and play[ing] off the zeitgeist" — so if everybody is already freaking out about drones, they'll publish a story that has to do with drones, and become part of the conversation. This is a tremendously ambitious idea, one which would presumably require having a lot of stories in inventory waiting for the right news cycle — but if it works, it could make science fiction part of our discussion of technology and science in a new way. I hope they pull it off.