Italian museums make limited use of social media

Civita report calls for innovation

Editorial Staff
April 3, 2016 - 14:00

Italy's museums are not talking to the millions of potential visitors who use social media, according to a report from the Civita non-profit cultural association.

Noting that 9 million Italians aged 25–44 use social media to access cultural institutions, the report observes that, with the exception of museums of contemporary art, the use of social networks to interact with clients and attract more visitors is “not yet a strategic and significant goal” for Italian museums, and that their language is “not inclusive or suited to a digital audience”.

Summarizing the results of a survey of 1,112 people aged 18 to 65, representing 24 million out of a total of 36.5 million social media users in Italy, the report confirms that Italians use social media to research museums, concert halls and other cultural institutions.

The survey found that 47.8 percent of Internet searches were for individual artists, followed by searches for musical organizations (14.8 percent), museums (10.7 percent), theatres (8.2 percent), exhibition spaces (7 percent) and libraries (6.6 percent).

Noting the missed opportunity to reach a vast audience, the report calls for innovative efforts on the part of museums to bring themselves into the digital age, and suggests working with research centres and cutting-edge technology companies.

Commenting on the findings, vice president of Civita, Nicola Maccanico, said, “There’s a lot to be done, we know what needs to be done, and that’s good news, but now we have to do it.”

“We have a gap to make up,” said culture minister Dario Franceschini. “But the reform of the ministry, the autonomy of museums, directors that come from international experiences aim precisely to close that gap.”

Franceschini also noted that the upcoming world congress of the International Council of Museums, in July, would be “an important opportunity to explain our reform and exchange knowledge”.

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