In July 2017, sports writer Jon Bois used his platform on SB Nation to serialize a 25-part speculative fiction story about a far future America where football games last for thousands of years and span the continent. The story is told from the point of view of 3 sentient satellites, using a combination of interactive/hypertext media, scrolling triggers, GIFs, videos and animation, as well as standard text.
Ultimately, it was a pretty cool example of multimedia storytelling, that also had a surprising crossover appeal — after all, it was hosted on (and remained relevant to) a sports news website, while still embracing new media trends and science fiction literary tropes.
And now … there's a sequel. 20020: What is the Future of College Football? launched with little hype or fanfare on Monday, September 28; new chapters will be released every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for the next 4 weeks. Our sentient satellite narrators have returned, but now we get to see an even farther-out vision of Dystopian America where collegiate sports have essentially colonized the nation. There are multiple footballs. There are hundreds of players. The basic rules remain the same (inasmuch as anything about the rules of football are "basic"). Except instead of a 100-yard field, games now stretch for thousands of miles along straight lines drawn between perpendicular college arenas (and cities have developed to incorporate this).
I, for one, am excited to have some dystopian commentary on the Internet to look forward to experiencing that isn't our daily lives. Welcome to 20020.
20020: What is the Future of College Football? [Jon Bois / SB Nation]
17776: What Football Will Look Like In The Future [Jon Bois / SB Nation]
A dazzling new piece of experimental fiction is being serialized on a sports news site [Thu-Huong Ha / Quartz]
This Weird Online Fiction About Football Is Also a Crash Course in Empathy [Kristen O'Neal / Electric Lit]