Swiss village bans photography so people don’t have the “fear of missing out”
A resort village of Bergün/ Bravuogn in Switzerland recently implemented quite an unusual ban. The local council has announced that, from now on, it’s forbidden to take photos of this picturesque village. Anyone who gets caught taking pictures will be issued a symbolic fine of 5 CHF (around $5), and the reason – they want to stop people from feeling miserable.
“What sense does it make,” you may ask. According to the Facebook post on the resort’s page, “it is scientifically proven that beautiful holiday photos shared on social media cause the viewers to feel miserable because they are not in that place. And Bergün is so lovely that there are only beautiful photos.” So, this strange move serves to prevent anyone from feeling sad because they’re missing out.
Many photos have been removed from the official Bergün’s Facebook page, and according to The Telegraph, they plan to remove them from the website as well. It goes so far that they send a video message to NASA to delete or blur the satellite images of the village. As they say, they are convinced that even the satellite photos of Bergün are so beautiful that they’ll make people miserable for not being there.
The photography ban caused mixed reactions on Facebook. On the one hand, there are negative comments and reviews, such as “I didn’t know about your insignificant town but at least now I know I will never go there.” Some people even seemed pretty mad about it. On the other hand, some users view this as a PR move, and to me, it seems they got the point.
This decision seems ridiculous at first sight, but it’s, in fact, an entertaining and humorous PR stunt. What Bergün’s officials want to achieve is that people don’t just look at other tourists’ photos on social networks, but to visit and see for themselves what this lovely place has to offer. Although the strategy is somewhat unusual, I think they nailed it. Personally, if there weren’t for this “photography ban,” I would probably never hear of this place, and I believe that was the point. They attracted media’s attention, caused reactions in people, and they made us curious to actually go there and see what the scenery looks like.
I’m not a marketing expert, but I am interested in it and I love to observe the ways people try to attract attention. I find Bergün’s marketing move humorous, I believe it will be fruitful, and it’s definitely memorable. What do you think of it? Does this make you want to go and see what the resort looks like (maybe even pay the penalty for taking photos)? Or you think it’s just ridiculous?
Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.