Hello and welcome back! In March I was able to visit Santorini and therefore stayed in Oía for a few days. And I want to talk about some parts of that time that made me think about my purpose as the host of an hopefully future online travel magazine.
About Oía, Santorini
I bet that almost all of you know about this place called Oía, or how the locals say Ía. It is this beautiful town on top of the cliffs directly above the sea. And it also has this beautiful beautiful building with the blue domes on it.
It could undoubtedly be one of the most picturesque places on the entire world. And this attracts a very nasty group of people: travel influencers. They come in groups of two; a girl in a flowy dress and a boy with a huge camera. And they ignore everything that stands between them and their perfect shot. No matter if it is a fence, a sign or simply the respect of someone’s privacy.
And as traveling gets cheaper and cheaper, more and more people come to see the blue domes, resulting in a stream of people going through the narrow streets of Oía. This town is actually not meant to hold that many people but still the tourism there is ever growing.
What Would You do to Get The Perfect Shot?
This ignorance that a lot of influencers embrace is actually hurting people. If you are ignoring the fences or signs in Oía, you are actually walking on someone else’s house and disrespecting their home and property. What would you think of those who would did this to you? It actually doesn’t matter because even if you think it wouldn’t bother you, this isn’t your home and if the owner doesn’t want your tacky butt up there, you should actually leave him alone.
And remember: Influencers are only doing this for some nice posts and pictures. That’s all it is about. May I remind them, that it is still possible to take great pictures without bothering every local and woke tourist with ignoring those signs?
Some of them are also there to protect people. How many instagrammers or youtubers still have to fall to death, until everyone in the community knows, that picturesque places are not worth to die for?
About an Influencer’s Influence
Bloggers or Influencers, no matter how big or small their following might be, can start trends and promotes the places they went to. And they also set what’s right or wrong for people to do there. Meaning if they are walking on the houses and Churches, people will think that it is ok for them to do it. They will copy their behaviour so in the end influencers are responsible for others doing the same.
If you are a blogger or influencer ask yourself: what’s the kind of influence that I want to have? Am I showing people reality and authenticity? And even more important: am I a woke being, that travels responsibly and for the sake of traveling and meeting new cultures or am I just chasing instagram hotspots for taking dreamy pictures?
I don’t want to shame on anyone with the post, I rather wanted it to be a plea for influencers to be better. To be more creative. If you cannot recreate someone else’s shot, because you would have to ignore a sign, then set up a new standard for perfect shot at that location. Rise above that flowy dress girls and show what can be done with a bit more creative work!