At the Grand Place tourists are standing in a line to take a free “panoramic selfie”… what is this? Who offers this service and why?
Sur la Grande Place des gens font la file pour prendre des “panoramic selfies”… je me demande qu’est-ce que ça peut bien vouloir dire…
PanoraMe proposes what they call “panoramic selfies” as a tourist promotion (or a brand activation) campaign … “Turn Your Tourists Into Ambassadors” says their website. ”Reward your tourists with the ultimate souvenir they will gladly share with their friends!” The projet was born in Brussels as a start-up in 2016 and it’s main client is the city of Brussels. After a first test on Grand Place in 2016 (initiative of Philippe Close, then échevin bruxellois du Tourisme), the panoramic selfies have been technically improved and proposed at the Atomium. This summer there is a permanent free panoramic selfie installation on Grand Place, offered by the cities of Brussels and visit.brussels. “Get the bigger picture” is PanoramaMe’s slogan. A quick exploration of their website and blog also tells us that there is a know-how on how to create “engagement” on pictures shared on social media : “Pictures with a tagged location tend to drive 79% more engagement” … “pictures featuring faces get 38% more engagement”
On 14th of August 2018 the Belgian startup PanoraMe announced the signature of an exclusive strategic agreement with Picsolve. According to their website “For Picsolve, this agreement includes a worldwide exclusivity on the panoramic selfie technology developed by the startup financed by Leansquare (Meusinvest)”
For the creators of "Panoramic Selfie" (among most other professionals of digital communication) creating engagement is understood as a the number of interactions created (likes, shares, comments...). What does this tell us for urban participation in a more civic or political sense? Is there also a trend in creating a quantifiable amount of interaction, more than a more qualitative understanding of it?
This leads us to our more qualitative and performative understanding of participation...