We are Roamancing Egypt (again)!
As some of you may be aware we launched Emme Rogers and Brie Mason into their latest digital, interactive transmedia tale this past summer, Roamancing ~ a travel tale in search of those most elusive of creatures: love and romance. We’ve been having fun with it and for those of you that are familiar with Emme, I am sure you can imagine the silly shenanigans and characters we’ve met along the way, from being presented with a key to City of Yorkton with the fabulous Katrina German to forever bumping into a few delightfully mischievious Blues Men that have wormed their way into our hearts and our stories. With a trip to Egypt this past December to speak at the International Organisation for E-Tourism Conference in Cairo, Lori Yearwood and I decided that like many of the wonderful storytellers that we work with, it was time to weave ourself into our own tales. I am glad we did, as I had a lot of fun telling a tale or two with Lucy Duck and the Roamancing Red Boots in Egypt, and I am proud to say I am the first of our team to have done the Roamancing strut overseas (even if I looked ridiculous in doing so).
One of the realisations from being in Cairo during demonstrations in Tahrir Square, was the impact of mainstream media images on people back home. I was perfectly safe and having a grand time, yet perceptions from media images in North America were that Egypt was in a state of violence and chaos. The biggest threat to me? Too many marriage proposals. Here are two posts I wrote on the topic, upon returning home:
It struck me that when we’ve seen images of rioting in Canada, no one worries for ones safety in still visiting the country. That is not the case with Egypt, as the culture is so different from our own. Yet I felt welcomed and safe in visiting Egypt and saw how damaging the media images from Tahrir Square have been to Egyptian Tourism, a major player in the Egyptian economy.
It is for this reason that we have been consulting with the Egyptian Tourism Authority on using digital storytelling to share the wonderful and exciting travel experiences that you can have in Egypt in ‘real’ time. I am also pleased to share that the Egyptian Tourism Authority has similarly been consulting with two of the wonderful digital storytellers and fellow speakers that I recently met in Cairo, Daniel Noll and Audrey Scott. Daniel and Audrey are the husband-and-wife storytelling team behind the award winning travel blog, Uncornered Market. For over five years, they have continuously travelled around the world, inspiring others to create their own life and travel experiences.
Together with Audrey and Dan, I will be heading to Egypt from April 21 – 29, 2012 with Emme Rogers, Lucy Duck, and the Roamancing Red Boots in tow to share our adventures in Egypt in ‘real’ time and demonstrate for the World Tourism Organisation (UNTWO) Conference on Media and Tourism: Partnering with the Media in Challenging Times how digital media and travel bloggers can be used to change the conversation about tourist destinations challenged by negative perceptions related to current events. As a part of this, Dan, Audrey and I will be hosting an informal session with the Egyptian Tourism Authority at the beginning of the Conference on Thursday April 26th, 2012 to demonstrate our #WeVisitEgypt digital storytelling campaign.
We invite you to join us on our Digital Egyptian Adventure by following along with the hastag #WeVisitEgypt on your social networking feeds, as well as through uncorneredmarket.com, roamancing.com and emmerogers.com. Furthermore, we invite you to join us in demonstrating to Tourism how effective digital media, including social media and blogging can be in sharing a message. Here are some ways that you can become involved in the #WeVisitEgypt Campaign:
- Share what we are doing in Egypt and the #WeVisitEgypt hashtag to your media channels;
- Follow #WeVisitEgypt on your social networking channels and retweet content that appeals to you;
- Interact with us on our adventure at @UMarket, @Roamancing, @EmmeRogers and @EricaHargreave; and
- Share your own photos, video and blog posts from Egypt with the #WeVisitEgypt hashtag (and we will do our best to retweet them).
Thank you in advance for whatever ways you decide to join in the #WeVisitEgypt Adventure.