James Shakespeare asks similar questions, albeit sparked by an exhibition at the Barbican. The need to recording and photograph everything we do and to do so in such a way that it looks great when its uploaded to the internet is ruining our ability to enjoy things:
"There are plenty of ‘Facebook is bad for you because X’ posts, but I’m talking about a mindset that goes beyond any single web service. This is the curse of our age. We walk around with the tools to capture extensive data about our surroundings and transmit them in real-time to the bedrooms and pockets of friends, family and every acquaintance we’ve made in the past eight years. We end up with a diminished perception of reality because we’re more concerned about choosing a good Instagram filter for our meal than we are about how it tastes. We become Martian rovers, trundling around our environment, uploading data without the ability or desire to make any sense of it. Ultimately, we end up externalising our entire lives."I attended an exhibition recently and there was a rather remarkable installation, a large moving set piece. Two of us visitors were guided into the space by an invigilator to watch this thing happen and within seconds of us entering, the other visitor, a stranger, had her iPhone out and was recording it, watching it through her screen rather than the real thing, making sure she had a good angle on it. Apart from the fact this was pretty distracting for me because we were the only people in there, at no point did she seem to stop and absorb what she was seeing as I expect you're suppose to.
I've tended to stop taking photographs at mass events, places were there are loads of people. Someone else will already have uploaded a shot that's better than anything I could produce before I've even got home by a professional photographer. As you'll notice, I'll very rarely illustrate reviews and things with anything other than the blandest of photos sometimes of the outside of venue. Because I agree with James -- much more can be communicated in a textual expression of a feeling than an amateur photograph of something you've all seen anyway or can if you want to [via].