Visitor Photo Behavior at EMP|SFM

January 1st, 2010 | EVALUATION

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY This evaluation looked at one set of visitor behaviors - taking and using photographs - in the whole of Experience Music Project | Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame (EMP|SFM). It was conducted between April 30 and May 6, 2010 by collecting semi-structured interview responses from 58 EMP|SFM visitors during their visits. We sought to identify 1) whether visitors were taking their own photos in the galleries; 2) how they planned to use those photos; 3) whether they planned to use visitor-generated material (in the form of the Taking Aim Flickr site) after their visit; and 4) what parts of EMP|SFM most resonated with visitors, and whether those things had any connection to photo-taking behavior. Despite the limitations inherent to a small, preliminary study, the results offer lots of new ground to explore, whether through further evaluation or through expanded program initiatives. Regardless of the course of action, the following key findings can help shape EMP|SFM's next steps: Less than one year after the new photo policy began, more than two thirds of EMP|SFM visitors report taking pictures during their visit. Many of the museum's most-photographed locations seem to also be the spaces and things that most resonate with visitors. When asked how they might use their photos, most photographers (in about three quarters of all their responses) indicated plans to share the images in some way post-visit - potentially exposing new audiences to EMP|SFM's most compelling elements. A majority of visitors indicated they might use an EMP|SFM photo-sharing venue / community (from the Taking Aim interactive) after their visit. The appendix of this report includes the interview instrument used in the study.



Team Members

Emily Craig, Evaluator, University of Washington
Renae Youngs, Evaluator, University of Washington
University of Wisconsin, Contributor


Funding Source: IMLS


Audience: Evaluators | General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: Art | music | theater | Education and learning science
Resource Type: Evaluation Reports | Interview Protocol | Research and Evaluation Instruments | Summative
Environment Type: Exhibitions | Museum and Science Center Exhibits