The Exploratory Social-Mediatized Gaze: Reactions of Virtual Tourists to an Inflammatory YouTube Incident
Social media are revolutionizing the way that destinations are being portrayed and perceived, yet remain underresearched in tourism. Netnographic analysis of 7,187 international comments on a YouTube video depicting an antitourist incident in the Maldives revealed two opposing social representations of the social-mediatized gaze. The first is hegemonic and tolerant, and indicative of resolution-based dialectics. The second is polemical and intolerant, and indicative of conflict-based dialectics, replete with anti-Islamic rhetoric. Social media, because of the interplay of proximity to and distance from the relevant inflammatory visual stimuli, attracts and amplifies the latter social representation and suppresses the former. However, because of viewer attention ephemerality, associated projections of power in the comments may not have a lasting negative impact on the destination.
Journal of Travel Research
Tourist Behaviour and Visitor Experience
Tourism not elsewhere classified