Ugly Nature Selfie by Tessa Joosse

Social media and other platforms have become an essential part of meaning-making on outdoor activities, influencing discourses about “good nature” and “good outdoor experiences.” However, much research on environmental communication in online spaces explores such discourses without considering the influence of platforms. This article proposes that “nature” visible online is co-constructed by users and platforms alike. Using the empirical case of nature selfies—an archetype of imagery on social media platforms—posted on Instagram, Facebook, and Tripadvisor, and a small participatory “breaching experiment” aimed at collecting “ugly” nature selfies, we analyse and interrogate nature/society relationships displayed online within the platform contexts of attention economy and affordances. We conclude that these reinforce the desirability of consuming “beautiful” nature, while simultaneously limiting the possibilities for alternative nature/society relationships to be developed and promoted.

Scan the QR-cod in the end of the video to axess the academic article written by Malte Rödla, Jutta Haider and Sofie Joosse.