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Tourist taking photos/ videos of poverty

Travel Forums Off Topic Tourist taking photos/ videos of poverty

1. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 7y

The next time you complain about local people stroking your blonde locks in a hard seat train, think about the time you uplodaded videos on facebook of children with dirty clothes or wringkled faces of farmers toiling the fields. Think about the time you shameless took photos of a local person worshipping in a mosque.

I went to an impoverished village with a Polish tourist and a Brit, and they were playing with their gadgets, taking photos of school children to document their so called "REAL CULTURAL EXPERIENCE", the so called IMMERSION whatever that most COOL travellers find in their "OFF the beaten tracks" scholarly explorations.

The thought that those images will end up in facebook makes me puke. But who am I to judge, I just don't have a camera. No, I don't think I would take more than 5 images of school children, or post with them like I am some celebrity planning to adopt an African or Asian child.

And then I would have to here their monolgues on how amazing it is to be with these UNDERPRIVILEDGED kids, like they were talking about Pandas or some other wild life species.

I find the kids very cute and exotic... But I dont want them on my facebook.

2. Posted by wouterrr (Travel Guru 3379 posts) 7y

hmmm yah. i don't agree with you always but you've got a point. i find the slums always very interesting. interesting in the sense that how the hell do people survive in such dirt and terrible unhygienic circumstances. i have seen the slums in mumbai and i felt pretty weird. i actually drove through it from the comfort of a bus. you can see the misery in the eyes of all these unfortunate people. i never had the guts to make pictures in a slum (although I had the tendency to do so) because one it is dangerous and two because i am ashamed. i think it is unethical to make pictures of people whom have nothing and feel horribly frustrated and depressed of their situation. i think there is a slight difference with a slum and a village say in rural india. i believe that people still can enjoy life in a village although they don't have anything (in comparison to what we have) except their daily foods, a self-made house and ofcourse each other. i would not mind making pictures around there, i always give some some money in return, i always had good experiences and a good laugh. i have no idea if that helps but what more could i do. the world is not fair in many ways.

[ Edit: Edited on 04-Sep-2009, at 14:22 by wouterrr ]

3. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 7y

Quoting wouterrr

i always give some some money in return, i always had good experiences and a good laugh. i have no idea if that helps but what more could i do. the world is not fair in many ways.

You give money after you took their photos? Well, I thought if we atleast gave them candies, may be that will justify our intrusion of that nice village in the name of this so called, OFF BEATEN TRACK. I was just bored and so I went along.

But I didn't like I am photo journalist or an anthropologist, like some travellers do.

4. Posted by wouterrr (Travel Guru 3379 posts) 7y

Quoting Swept Away

Quoting wouterrr

i always give some some money in return, i always had good experiences and a good laugh. i have no idea if that helps but what more could i do. the world is not fair in many ways.

You give money after you took their photos? Well, I thought if we atleast gave them candies, may be that will justify our intrusion of that nice village in the name of this so called, OFF BEATEN TRACK.

I would not give any to children only to adults, but not always money, sometimes just cigarettes or anything they could use. It feels worse if you don't give anything and just leave. So basically that is why. I see that you feel ticklish about people that go OFF THE BEATEN TRACK. I have no idea why so maybe you can explain.

5. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5596 posts) 7y

Quoting wouterrr

Quoting Swept Away

Quoting wouterrr

i always give some some money in return, i always had good experiences and a good laugh. i have no idea if that helps but what more could i do. the world is not fair in many ways.

You give money after you took their photos? Well, I thought if we atleast gave them candies, may be that will justify our intrusion of that nice village in the name of this so called, OFF BEATEN TRACK.

I would not give any to children only to adults, but not always money, sometimes just cigarettes or anything they could use. It feels worse if you don't give anything and just leave. So basically that is why. I see that you feel ticklish about people that go OFF THE BEATEN TRACK. I have no idea why so maybe you can explain.

Probably because there are no hostels to make so-called friends

6. Posted by eroltoksoy (Full Member 173 posts) 7y

I dont shoot photos of people that I dont personally know ( withou their will) . First of all it is rude, it is inethical and dangerous. I only shoot my cmpmpany and sights.

[ Edit: Edited on 07-Sep-2009, at 01:11 by eroltoksoy ]

7. Posted by Cool Paul (Travel Guru 611 posts) 7y

Quoting eroltoksoy

I dont shoot photos of people that I dont personally know ( withou their will) . First of all it is rude, it is inethical and dangerous. I only shoot my cmpmpany and sights.

yeah same here, I have never taken pictures of someone I don't know. I barely take pictures of people I have met, unless I consider that person a friend and their is a reason to take a photo I don't take a photo.

also yeah what is your deal with the "off the beaten path"? you seem angry about it.

8. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 7y

We took pictures of schoolchildren in South Africa, in this tiny village where our tour company helped sponsor the local school. We asked permission from our local guide as well as the teachers, and the kids were well used to the cameras and proudly showed off their school skills. They weren't asking for money or handouts--they simply wanted to show what travellers helped accomplish by choosing a tour group with a vested interest in the area.

As for posting it on Facebook and the likes, there's two sides to that coin. Ever watch saturday morning TV, with all the footage of starving children and hopeful donors? Posting pics of impoverished kids can actually spur people to DO something--to donate, volunteer, become a sponsor. So regardless of intentions, if a child somewhere is helped by a showoff-y Facebook pic, I"d say the end justifies the means.

Edit: And if you think the people taking the pics are doing so to show off and look cool and get bragging rights or whatever, you should have seen the lovely man in our tour group burst into tears at the sight of those kids. Swept Away, sometimes you nitpick at others' bad intentions, but you seem to ignore your own.

[ Edit: Edited on 10-Sep-2009, at 12:46 by tway ]

9. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 7y

Quoting Cool Paul

Quoting eroltoksoy

I dont shoot photos of people that I dont personally know ( withou their will) . First of all it is rude, it is inethical and dangerous. I only shoot my cmpmpany and sights.

yeah same here, I have never taken pictures of someone I don't know. I barely take pictures of people I have met, unless I consider that person a friend and their is a reason to take a photo I don't take a photo.

also yeah what is your deal with the "off the beaten path"? you seem angry about it.

"off beaten tracks"... seem angry, the word is "seem". I am actually ballistic to be precise. Lets just say, I met so many annoying tourist, like those that build campfires in OFF BEATEN tracks... talks about poverty like the people who experience them are exotic animals in a safari.

I have been to very remote counties that treated me like a celebrity and that is not a hyperbole. I am ultra REMORSEFUL, for all the times I describe their TOILETS to other travellers. The places I've visit were all so immaculate and yet I had to say something about their toilet... which is hell. They will probably build restrooms with western toilets for the CONVENIENCE of these other travellers who want the Off the beaten tracks experience, and this place will be HELL.

10. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 7y

Quoting wouterrr

Quoting Swept Away

Quoting wouterrr

i always give some some money in return, i always had good experiences and a good laugh. i have no idea if that helps but what more could i do. the world is not fair in many ways.

You give money after you took their photos? Well, I thought if we atleast gave them candies, may be that will justify our intrusion of that nice village in the name of this so called, OFF BEATEN TRACK.

I would not give any to children only to adults, but not always money, sometimes just cigarettes or anything they could use. It feels worse if you don't give anything and just leave. So basically that is why. I see that you feel ticklish about people that go OFF THE BEATEN TRACK. I have no idea why so maybe you can explain.

There is a secluded beach in one place, someone called it SECRET BEACH, and now it is PLAGUE by stupid tourist and locals who bring stalls to sell all sorts of stuff, soon the pimps will arrive. The place has no Shortage of tourist spots that give locals the jobs that they need. But here comes the stupid tourist who want the so called "Off beaten track thingy", it was just a nice quiet beach, that few people cared about, until someone with a very limmitted Vocabulary named Secret Beach, and started attracting a hord of very Eco friendly travellers, who trashed the place with broken beer bottles.

Well I was just being "TICKLISH" but then you asked why.