Mark Marino

Professor (Teaching) of Writing

Research & Practice Areas

Electronic Literature, Digital Writing, Computer-Generated Writing, Artificial Intelligence and Writing, Computers and Composition, Digital Narrative, Interactive Narrative, Conversational Agents, Fake News, Game Studies, Critical Code Studies, Software Studies, Netprov, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Immersive Digital Entertainment

Center, Institute & Lab Affiliations

  • Humanities and Critical Code Studies Lab, Director



Mark C. Marino is a writer and scholar of electronic literature and digital writing living in Los Angeles.  His works include “a show of hands” (, “Living Will” (, and “The Ballad of Workstudy Seth” ( With Rob Wittig, he is a co-founder of Meanwhile… Netprov Studios ( His recent work includes “Salt Immortal Sea” ( and Mrs. Wobbles and the Tangerine House (, a collection of interactive stories about a magical foster care home he writes with his children.

As a scholar of technoculture and emerging media, he was one of ten co-authors of 10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10 ( (MIT 2013) and joined with Jessica  Pressman and Jeremy Douglass on Reading Project: A Collaborative Analysis of William Poundstone’s Project for Tachistoscope {Bottomless Pit} (Iowa Press 2015).  His book Critical Code Studies was published by MIT Press (2020). Most recently, he co-authored (or prompted) the satirical memoir Hallucinate This! an authoritized autobotography of ChatGPT.  Mark is also the Director of Communication of the Electronic Literature Organization. He currently teaches writing at the University of Southern California where he directs the Humanities and Critical Code Studies Lab (, a colaboratory exploring the explication of computer source code. (Full portfolio here:


  • Ph.D. English: Electronic Literature, UC Riverside, 6/2006
  • M.A. English and American Literature, Loyola Marymount University, 5/2001
  • M.F.A. Creative Writing, University of Notre Dame, 5/1996
  • Other Employment

    • Consultant, Walt Disney Imagineering, 05/15/2010-10/15/2010
  • Summary Statement of Research Interests

    Research interests include: electronic literature, conversational agents (chatbots), AI and writing, new media, emerging writing forms instructional technology, game studies, social networking, and writing practices.

    Also, Critical Code Studies.

    Research Keywords

    digital narratives, game studies, electronic literature, composition, conversational agents, hypertext, code, mobile narratives, software studies, critical code studies, technoculture, social media, fake news, educational technology, selfies, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, computer-generated writing, immersive digital theatre

  • USC Funding

    • 2010-11 Teaching with Technology Grants: Course Continuity in a Crisis [C3]. Mapping Voices of the Crisis: Students collect Oral Histories on experiences of crises in Los Angeles. This project is part of a “plan b” assignment to be deployed in the event of a natural or political disaster, $7500, 2010-2011
  • Conference Presentations

    • Andrews’ Open Canvas: A Criticl Code Studies Reading of Aleph Null , ELO: Electrifying LiteratureTalk/Oral Presentation, ELO, WVU, Morgantown, WV, 06/20/2012 – 06/23/2012
    • Crowdsourcing Community Service , Education in ActionTalk/Oral Presentation, UC San Diego, San Diego, CA, 01/06/2012
    • “The Code of Hacktavism: A Critical Code Study Case Study , MLATalk/Oral Presentation, Modern Language Association, Los Angeles, 01/06/2011 – 01/09/2011
    • Leveraging New Media in a Writing Program: Tools and Techniques for Teaching and Learning , New Media Consortium Summer ConferenceRoundtable/Panel, NMC, Los Angeles, 06/08/2010 – 06/10/2010
    • Re-Tooling Learning: Student Empowerment through Databases, Information Visualizations, and Nested Media , New Media Consortium Summer ConferenceRoundtable/Panel, California, Los Angeles, 06/08/2010 – 06/10/2010
    • Intersecting Approaches to Electronic Literature: Close-Reading Code, Content, and Cartographies in “William Poundstone’s “Project for the Tachistoscope: [Bottomless Pit]” , Electronic Literature Organization: Archive and InnovateTalk/Oral Presentation, Electronic Literature Organization, Brown University, 06/03/2010 – 06/06/2010
    • E-Portfolio Options: Analyses and Observation , Conference on College Composition and Communication Talk/Oral Presentation, CCCC, Louisville, KY, 03/17/2010 – 03/20/2010
    • Disrupting heteronormative codes: When cylons in slash goggles ogle Anna Kournikova , DAC 09Talk/Oral Presentation, DAC, UC Irvine, CA, 12/12/2009 – 12/15/2009
    • Critical Code Studies of Queer Technology , SLSA 2009Talk/Oral Presentation, SLSA, Atlanta, GA, 11/05/2009 – 11/08/2009
    • Must Universities Twitter? What our students know about tech. , PACRAOKeynote Lecture, PACRAO, Invited, Newport, CA, 11/01/2009 – 11/02/2009
    • Critical Code Studies: Tracking Terrorist and Databases , Digital Humanities 2009Talk/Oral Presentation, MITH, University of Maryland, 2008-2009
    • LA Flood Project , HASTAC II: Techno Travels/TeleMobil HASTAC in MotionPoster, HASTAC, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, 2008-2009
    • Marginalia in the Library of Babel , &Now Festival of Innovative Writing and ArtReading, &Now, Chapman U, CA, 2008-2009
    • Original Chat: Exploring the Origins of the Turing Test , ELO: Visionary LandscapesTalk/Oral Presentation, Electronic Literature Organization, Washington State University-Vancouver, 2008-2009
    • The Slicing and Dicing (and Splicing) of Sharable Educational Content , Educause Live!Lecture/Seminar, Educause, Invited, online webinar, Spring 2009
    • Web 2.0 and the Future of Learning Management Systems , Center For Scholarly Technology Faculty ForumTalk/Oral Presentation, CST, Invited, USC, Fall 2008
    • Beta Writer: Portrait of the Author as an Early Adopter , Modern Language Association ConferencePoster, Modern Language Association Conference, Chicago, IL, 2007-2008
    • Critical Code Studies , Softwhere StudiesTalk/Oral Presentation, Software Studies Group, UCSD, Invited, UC San Diego, 2007-2008
    • Examining the Information Systems of the Electronic Literature Collection , ELO: Visionary LandscapesTalk/Oral Presentation, Electronic Literature Organization, Washington State U. — Vancouver, 2007-2008
    • Marginalia Ficcional de la Biblioteca de Babel , VI Jornadas de Investigacion Literaria y Linguisticaonline talk, Universidad del Zulia, Maracaibo, Venzuela, 2007-2008
    • Literatronica: adaptive digital narrative , Conference on Hypertext and HypermediaTalk/Oral Presentation, ACM, Pittsburgh, PA, 06/19/2008 – 06/21/2008
    • Procedural Rhetoric: Code as Argument , SLSA 2007: codeTalk/Oral Presentation, Society for Science, Literature, and the Arts, Portland, Maine, 11/02/2007
    • International Electronic Literature , The Future of the Electronic LiteratureTalk/Oral Presentation, Electronic Literature Organization/MITH, Invited, MITH, UM, 05/02/2007
    • Racial Transformations in Keepers of the House. , Symposium on Shirley Ann GrauTalk/Oral Presentation, Dept. of English, LSU, Invited, LSU, 11/20/2006

    Other Presentations

    • Project for Tachistoscope, Writing becomes Eclectric: a symposium on electronic literature, San Diego, 2010-2011
  • Book

    • Marino, M. C. (2018). Critical Code Studies. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.
    • Douglass, J., Marino, M. C., Pressman, J. (2011). Close Reading Electronic Literature: A Case Study of of William Poundstone’s “Project for the Tachistoscope: [Bottomless Pit]”. U of Iowa Press.

    Book Chapters

    • Marino, M. C. (2006). 12 Easy Lessons to Better Time Travel. (Vol. NA) Second Person/MIT Press.

    Journal Article

    • Marino, M. C. (2012). “Of Sex, Cylons, and Worms: A Critical Code Study of Heteronormativity. Leonardo Electronic Almanac. Vol. 17 (1) Online
    • Marino, M. C., Feinstein, M. (2011). Critical Code Studies Conference – Week Two Introduction. electronic book review. Read the Article
    • Marino, M. C. (2010). The ppg256 Perl Primer: The Poetry of Techneculture. Emerging Language Practices. (1) Read the Article
    • Marino, M. C. (2010). Critical Code Studies and the electronic book review: An Introduction. electronic book review. Read the Article
    • Marino, M. C. (2008). Review: The Electronic Literature Collection Volume I: A New Media Primer. Digital Humanities Quarterly. Vol. 2 (1)
    • Marino, M. C. (2007). Re: Ulysses in Hypertext: Towards a hypermedia parallax engine. James Joyce Quarterly/University of Tulsa. Vol. NA
    • Marino, M. C. (2007). Critical Code Studies. electronic book review/Joseph Tabbi. Vol. NA
    • Marino, M. C. (2006). Communities of Chatbots: a Survey of the makers and users of conversation agents. New Media and Society/Sage. Vol. NA
    • Marino, M. C. (2005). Multimedia Hurston. Explorations/Flora Levy Humanities Series. Vol. NA
    • Marino, M. C. (1997). Equivocado. Arkansas Review/Arkansas State University. Vol. NA


    • Marino, M. C. (2009). Disrupting Heteronormative Codes: When Cylons in Slash Goggles Ogle AnnaKournikova. In UC Irvine: Digital Arts and Culture 2009 (Ed.), Retrieved. pp. 9. Irvine, CA. University of California.

    Short Story

    • Marino, M. C. (2007). Marginalia in the Library of Babel. (Marino, Mark Christopher, Ed.). Virginia. New River Journal. Link to the Story
    • Marino, M. C. (2007). a little show of hands. (Helen J Burgess, Ed.). hyperrhiz: New Media Cultures.
    • “22 Short Films about Grammar” Machinima, Series of instructional videos produced using Activision’s “The Movies”, 2006-2007
    • Web 2.0 Application Generator, A Flash-based generator, satirizing the Web 2.0 application hyper-proliferation.,
    • A Show of Hands, an adaptive hypertext novela written using the Literatronica system, 2007-2008
    • “The Los Wikiless Timespedia” Wiki, a wiki-based satire of the end of newspapers., 2007-2008
    • The LA Flood Project, The LA Flood Project, a locative narrative and netprov., 01/01/2008
    • A Show of Hands, Included in the Electronic Literature Collection volume 2, 2011-2012
    • The Ballad of Workstudy Seth, Published in SpringGun Press the Twitter transcript of an electronic literary work following a college student indentured to social media.

      Featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education:,

    • SOS College (, 2009-2010
    • USC Writing Widgets (with students), 2008-2009
    • The USC Topoi Widgets, 2007-2008
    • Children’s Digital Fiction. Opening up Digital Fiction Writing Competition, 2017-2018
    • Advancing Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences, Fall 2017
    • USC Information Literacy Course Enhancement Grant, Fall 2015
    • American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship Recipient, Transmedial Collaboration: Literary Criticism as Digital Humanities Scholarship, Fall 2013
    • 2nd Place Nuestras Voces Playwrights Competition Repetorio Espanol, 2011-2012
    • Regional Finalist in the David Mark Cohen playwrights award , 2011-2012
    • USC Stephen B. Sample Teaching and Mentoring Award Nominee, 2011-2012
    • USC Stephen B. Sample Teaching and Mentoring Award Nominee, 2010-2011
    • Fulbright Award, Fulbright Specialist at University of Bergen, Norway, Spring 2011
    • Nominated for Teaching and Mentoring Award, 2009-2010
  • Committees

    • Member, Technology Committee, 08/20/2015 –
    • Community Outreach Committee, 2017-2018
    • Member, Merit Review, Fall 2016
    • Merit Review, Fall 2014
    • Member, Professional Development, 08/20/2011 – 05/20/2013
    • Member, Merit Review, Fall 2012
    • Member, Merit Review Committee, Fall 2008
  • Committees

    • Member, Writing Program Curriculum and Pedagogy Committee, 2012-2013
    • Member, Writing Program Professional Development Committee, 2011-2012
    • Member, Video@USC Task Force, Spring 2012

    Conferences Organized

    • Organizer, Critical Code Studies Working Group 2012, online, 01/30/2012 – 02/20/2012
    • Organizer, Critical Code Studies @ USC, USC, 07/23/2010
    • Organizer/Moderator, Critical Code Studies Working Group, Online, 02/01/2010 – 03/14/2010
    • Organizer, Digital Arts and Culture; Literary Arts Extravaganze, UC Irvine, 12/14/2009

    Editorships and Editorial Boards

    • Editor, Bunk Magazine, 08/1998 – 05/2010

    Professional Offices

    • Communication Director, Board of Directors, Electronic Literature Organization, 09/2007 – 09/2013

    Professional Memberships

    • CLACSO (El Consejo Latinoamericano de Ciencias Sociales), 2006 –
    • Modern Language Association, 2006 –
    • Electronic Literature Organization, 2005 –
    • Association of Internet Researchers, 2005 – 2010
    • International Communication Association, 2006 – 2008
    • National Communication Association, 2006 – 2008
    • Society for Cinema and Media Studies, 2006 – 2008

    Reviewer for Publications

    • International Journal of Learning and Media, The International Journal of Learning and Media (IJLM) provides a forum for scholars, researchers, and practitioners to examine the changing relationships between learning and media across a wide range of forms and settings. Our focus is particularly, but by no means exclusively, on young people, and we understand learning in broad terms to include informal and everyday contexts as well as institutions such as schools. We are especially interested in the broader social and cultural dimensions of these issues and in new and emerging media technologies, forms, and practices. We are particularly keen to promote international and intercultural exchange and dialogue in the field and encourage contributions from a variety of academic disciplines and perspectives, including papers from practitioners and policy-makers., 2010-2011
    • International Journal of Human Computer Studies, “The International Journal of Human-Computer Studies publishes original research over the whole spectrum of work relevant to the theory and practice of innovative interactive systems. The journal is inherently interdisciplinary, covering research in computing, artificial intelligence, psychology, linguistics, communication, design, engineering, and social organization, which is relevant to the design, analysis, evaluation and application of innovative interactive systems. Papers at the boundaries of these disciplines are especially welcome, as it is our view that interdisciplinary approaches are needed for producing theoretical insights in this complex area and for effective deployment of innovative technologies in concrete user communities.”, 2006-2007