OAKLAND, California –
With the recent museum shooting in Tunisia, many museums stateside are seeing increased traffic. The Oakland Museum of California in particular came forth to talk about the shooting and its hopes for the future.
“My thoughts go out all those affected by the shooting – but it’s been great for business. People have a renewed sense of appreciation of the importance of museums, even if it’s superficial and based on sensationalism,” a representative from OMCA said in an interview.
“I’m not saying I want it to happen, but a shooting is incredible for publicity – maybe if the gunmen are just really drunk or have bad aim and don’t take any lives?” he added.
While his words may be met with an incredulous glance at first, a closer look reveals them to be true. Each year fewer people visit historical, art, and educational museums, leaving many of them with no option but to close their doors. The culprit: apathy of the new generation. When something dramatic happens, however, people suddenly regain interest.
OMCA recently dedicated a research team to this effect which they termed “Hipster Empathy.”
“Thanks to social media, whenever something happens, people gobble up the headlines in an attempt to seem cultured,” the head of the team explained. “We originally thought one of two things: either they make the connection that visiting a museum will ACTUALLY make them more cultured, or the faint possibility of danger makes it seem more exciting,” the head of the team explained.
In the end, the team leaned more toward a subconscious link to the shooting in Tunisia, adding that explosions or some kind of blatant racism would have been more exciting and could make the effect stronger.