Photographic Image, Credibility, and Consumption of Tourism in the Digital Era

Photographic Image, Credibility, and Consumption of Tourism in the Digital Era

André Riani Costa Perinotto, Jakson Renner Rodrigues Soares
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9783-4.ch005
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This chapter seeks to bring the communication field and tourism closer together. In this sense, the authors use photographic images and photography through authors from different areas. They believe that hospitality and tourism as a transdisciplinary field deserve a wide and transversal discussion. In addition, they seek with this work to discuss the mediatized society, with the instantaneousness of the “digital world” in technological devices, within the context of tourism communication. Likewise, it seeks to promote a discussion about the importance of selecting the right tools in the strategy to promote the tourist photographic image with regard to the theme of marketing and communication, in the sense of reaching certain audiences (consumers, or not, of the tourist activity). Finally, it concludes that the use of new technologies by tourists during their stay may increase the credibility of the information disclosed because tourists, as well as consumers, have an important role in the production of information.
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Tourism as an activity tends to be an intangible service and the photographic image acts in this necessary sensitization, not always directly, sometimes in films, novels and etc. Always with the photographic image as background to disseminate, inform, disseminate and sometimes attract people to the mediated landscapes in photographic images in different media. At this point, convergence with authors such as Perinotto (2013), Flusser (2009), Sontag (2004) and others will provide a debate for readers to take advantage of and understand the important dynamics of tourism communication.

Throughout the chapter, we aim to bring the communication field of tourism closer together, using the theory of photographic images and photography, through authors from different areas. The theoretical discussion on this importance of the Communication for Tourism must be posed and debated (to understand even the relationship in which marketing is present in this relationship), such as communication, tourism and photography (imagery). With regard to this theme, which is somewhat broad to be debated, we seek to reflect on authors who bring subjects that cross between Communication and Tourism, tourism and images, tourism and photography, to give a general basis on the intricacies of the research foundation, which revolve around these three axes.

Thus, some of these authors have been referenced, whether they are read in books or in academic / scientific journals, such as Perinotto (2013), Urry (1996) and Albernaz (2009). In addition to theme as Photography (history and philosophy) and photographic images. In this item of references, one thing draws attention, there was a concern in providing a brief report to the reader about photography and its importance in communication. However, in order for the discussion of photography not to be limited only to technique and history, it was necessary to deepen the epistemology and philosophy behind photography and the photographic image. We use the following authors: Aumont (1993), Barthes (1984), Benjamin (1994, 2006), Flusser (2009), Lopes (1998) and Sontag (2004).

There was some concern considering that the tourist consumer travels more and more independently of the intermediation. It informs itself and contracts services through the internet, and that any topic raises a greater interest through the visualization of photographic images and comments of the web pages, one can affirm that the internet has increased the requirement for more intense and special experiences (Sousa, 2015). Tourism as an activity tends to be an intangible service and the photographic image can be considered as an attempt to make this service tangible. The sources of tourist information are responsible for presenting the destination and therefore may influence their attractiveness.

Thus, discussing the relationship sources of information, photographic image and communication in tourism would be something more than necessary in the times that run. However, before entering this discussion, it is necessary to highlight the importance of the internet in tourism promotion, as the use of social networks by society increasingly affects tourism, promotion of destinations, products and services (Sousa, 2015).

The rise of the internet in the field of tourism produces a transformation in the tools used in the supply of destinations. It increases its attractiveness and increases the power of competitiveness of tourism destinations and companies. Likewise, the promotion uses photographic images as a background to disseminate, inform, disseminate and sometimes attract people to mediated landscapes in photographic images.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Social Network: We think it is a social structure composed of people or organizations, connected by one or several types of relationships, which share common values and goals. One of the fundamental characteristics in the definition of networks is its openness, allowing horizontal and non-hierarchical relationships among the participants.

Photography: We can reflect that photography can be considered a technique that not only revolutionized the way to produce still image, but also represented the embryo of the so-called moving image, as it served as the basis/inspiration for the development of cinema and, a few years later, of television for example.

Media: We consider media in three types: mass media, niche media, and micromedia. The first one concerns broadcasting productions (open TV, newspapers and magazines that have large distribution and circulation, AM and FM radios), niche ones correspond to narrowcasting (such as pay-TV channels, for example).

Social media: Social media are websites that allow the creation and sharing of information and content by people and people, in which consumers are both the producer and consumer of information. More and more users are using social media as a way to expand their contacts, expose their ideas and relate to individuals from different regions and different locales.

Credibility: Attribute, quality, characteristic of who or what is believable; reliability; that can be believed, believed.

Tourism Communication: Tourism depends heavily on communication, either to communicate the attraction, or to communicate between companies, among other factors. In technological and media terms, tourism communication takes place in various forms, either by printed media, television, radio, Internet, among others. By varying the media and the technological devices, the localities / attractions can be communicated to the different visitors/tourists.

Authenticity: Legitimacy; condition or character of authentic. It is also the quality of what is true; truthfulness; manifestation of sincerity or naturalness.

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