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September 17, 2008

Website souvenirs

A souvenir is something you get to keep the experience alive after visiting a place or an event. Photo's and before that postcards are the most common souvenirs. In the book Experience Economy online strategist Bruno Guissani is quoted saying "Souvenirs are the means for experiences to 'socialize', to share them with others".

Old postcards

If visiting a certain website gives you a memorable experience, you might want to get a souvenir as well. This already happens in a way by the means of 'Pages' in Facebook, where celebrities, places, events or products can be befriended or sites like "HOT or NOT" hotlists. Although most of these refer to 'real' artefacts, not virtual ones like websites. Also they usually refer to the continuing phenomenon and not a particular event.

For the souvenir to be valuable it has to be unique and specific. So what you need is a date stamp and/or a screenshot of the site as it was when you visited it. It will allow you to 'go back memory lane' and relive the experience.
For those of you that have used the Netvibes website for a while, the recent 'launch' of their Vintage site, supports this experience. For others it's a good reference point to appreciate the current experience:

All in all, it is already possible to create your own souvenirs of virtual experiences by taking screenshots (see also "Taking pictures of the web") and maintaining a lifestream (see also "Street credits"). But I think there is an opportunity for businesses to support this process, like they do so amply in the real world.

Posted by Almar at 05:22 PM | Comments (0)