- Brief analysis of 150,000 photographs from Flickr in the province of Malaga.
- It identifies the profile and preferences of tourists.
Last Saturday, I was in Malaga. I was invited by Sonia Blanco and the Universidad Internacional de Andalucia to participate in workshop on Tourism and Social Networks. Sonia is professor at the University of Malaga, and one of the oldest bloggers in the Spanish blogosphere. Sonia asked me to present the analysis Fernando Tricas and myself did about Flickr photos and the Canary Islands (2009-2010), and I gladly accepted. I wanted to bring an update, so we got to work to make a short presentation with data from the province of Malaga. And that's what is shown below.
Last Thursday, with the presentation already made, Fernando passed me an interesting link, a visualization by the Wall Street Journal that shows the density of a week of Foursquare check-ins in New York . If the WSJ could do it, so do we ;) We already had the data and the map algorithms, so generated the maps by months and joined them to build the animation.
The video below shows the density of photographs taken in the province of Malaga from 2004 to 2010. Blue colors are areas where they make some pictures, and the red areas have made many pictures. There are areas with many photographs, places of touristic interest. And of course, there are months where the activity is higher and lower.
The video is just a bit of whole presented analysis. Full version is available below.
As you may know, Flickr is a popular photo-sharing service with 5 billion of hosted images and 86 million unique visitors. Flickr has social networking features, since it allows to make contacts. Flickr can play a role in the promotion of tourist destinations, as it is one of the main sources of images on the Internet. But to us, Flickr is a huge source of data: Which are the most photogenic places? Who are taking pictures there? These and other questions can answered using data mining.
For this study we obtained the metadata of 175,000 photographs (62,000 geolocated), 7,900 photographers and 1,470,000 tags (47,000 unique). All these pictures were either marked by the tag "malaga" or GPS coordinates were inside the province of Malaga.
Below are the five most relevant slides: the tag cloud, the number of photos and photographers by months, the top 10 countries of the geolocated photographers, the group of tags and heatmaps of the geolocated images.
According to those who share photos on Flickr about Malaga, we can conclude that:
- The high season in Málaga is August (also, in April there is a Holy Week-effect.
- Users come mainly from UK, USA, Italy, Germany, Madrid and Andalusia. (USA is probably overrepresented compared to real visitors).
- They are interested in photography, beaches, festivals, fairs, nature, sea, birds, sky, parks.
- Pictures are taken mainly in Málaga (capital), Ronda, Barcenilla and Benalmadena.
The full presentation slides show more features, such as geolocated photographs by countries. It is interesting to compare these data with the previous study on the Canaries. A more detailed analysis can be done, but the roundtable had limited time. This sneak peek shows the potential of social networking and geolocation services for market research. If you have any questions, ask in the comments!
The presentation and images have a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.
Finally, my gratitude to the organization of the UNIA for the invitation and hospitality, to Daniel Cerdan for suggesting the title of the post and Fernando Tricas for his unconditional support.