Museums and social media: revolution or distraction?
Partly in line with the "participatory turn", partly in response to the new marketing standard, museums are expected to be present and active on social media. Not everyone agrees with this shift and what it will ultimately mean for museums. The space is still evolving, but social media potentially holds the promise of the kind of real audience engagement that transforms tradition ideas about knowledge creation. Others see social media as promising a kind of participation that can’t or shouldn’t be delivered in the museum context, and so is a fast-track to 'disenchanted prosumption'.
Peter Booth, post-doctoral fellow at BI Centre for Creative Industries, presents a brief overview of the range of ways museums engage with social media. Taking the view that museum directors are critical in determining the excitement or resistance towards the new social media communication paradigm, Booth asks: Can we talk about museum directors "types" as a way of making sense of museum attitudes towards social media?