Flickr photo of Rene Magritte's The Treachery of Images by Claire L. Evans
posted by nicknormal on normalblog:
photography not allowed - get out!
This post over on jameswagner highlights a concern I've voiced before that I personally find problematic: galleries and museums who still restrict the use of photography (I always take my shots without flash, fyi), who fail to understand that bloggers and other networks of individuals now account for a considerable amount of their publicity and general dialogue that was previously restricted to critics and experts (whatever that means).
But James's run-in was more unfortunate, with the gallery staff escalating the incident to a verbal altercation and subsequently leaving nasty comments on James's blog. Tsk tsk.
I restate my previously mentioned proof of concept:
Flickr search for MoMA versus Flickr search for Cooper-Hewitt - the MoMA has over 80,000 images, taken and uploaded by the public, including masses of their collection; the Cooper-Hewitt has just over 1,500, mostly of the facade and building exterior, because photography inside is not allowed.
You'd think that galleries would be ahead of the curve (ahead of the bulky beaurocracy of museums, at least), but I guess some folks get prissy over photography in their shops. Anyways, there are quite a few initiatives by various museums going in the direction of encouraging public photography and subsequent photo-sharing. The "pioneers" among the museums are undoubtedly MoMA and the two artists who developed "iMoma":
Here is a short list of posts that discuss the phenomenon, and some iMoMA-inspired initiatives that I've been involved with myself (via GoldwaterLibrary.org):
Goldwater Library débuts photo sharing group (August 14, 2007)
Museums + folksonomies: bridging the semantic gap (March 28, 2007)
iMoMA: Virtually Phlogging the Museum (February 23, 2007)
iMoMA became so monstrously successful that it developed away from flickr and is now housed here: http://photomoma.org