Allowing Photography at Museums
I have mixed feelings about this. I went to the ROM last week with two girlfriends and we were snapping photos left, right and centre after we saw the sign at the entrance of the Pompeii exhibit. It said something along the lines of Photography is welcome. There were interactive displays like dressing up as a gladiator or putting on a toga and they encouraged posting these photos on social media.
I think museums have come a long way in terms of trying to get with the social media trends. ROM has been running Friday nights at the ROM, which is an interesting concept to bring in young people to the museum.
So given that the museum encourages photography, why do I feel a need to hide my camera or put my phone away? After pondering this, I think I have realized that there is a level of reverence and respect for history that is undergoing a drastic change. Gone are the days where people learn simply by looking at exhibits and reading. Adults, like children, enjoy interactive exhibits. The use of social media brings in more people. It’s evolving the way we learn.
It’s simple. Social media works. Social media is powerful. For those of us who still feel uneasy about snapping a picture or two, it’s clear to see that museums are trying to be more fun. Museum visitors aren’t damaging authentic artifacts while enjoying their time. I’ll probably still get that uneasy feeling, but I definitely think it’s great that people are enjoying their experience!
And here I leave you with my own toga-wearing shenanigans.