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Instagram at the museum: Communicating the museum experience through social photo sharing

Sourcetitle: 
Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on Human factors in computing systems
Year of publication: 
2013
PublicationType: 
Conference paper - peer reviewed

The everyday use of smartphones with high quality built-in cameras has lead to an increase in museum visitors’ use of these devices to document and share their museum experi- ences. In this paper, we investigate how one particular pho- to sharing application, Instagram, is used to communicate visitors’ experiences while visiting a museum of natural history. Based on an analysis of 222 instagrams created in the museum, as well as 14 interviews with the visitors who created them, we unpack the compositional resources and concerns contributing to the creation of instagrams in this particular context. By re-categorizing and re-configuring the museum environment, instagrammers work to construct their own narratives from their visits. These findings are then used to discuss what emerging multimedia practices imply for the visitors’ engagement with and documentation of museum exhibits. Drawing upon these practices, we sug- gest ways to reconnect the online social media dialogue with the museum site.

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Page updated: 2013-01-21 09:54

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