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Can we all just agree to be decent people inside the National Museum of Natural History?

The remarkable and widely-appreciated opening of the National Museum of National History  has brought Filipinos a step closer to the wonders of our own flora and fauna, which our country is so richly endowed with. However, as evidenced in a Twitter thread by Filipino user Marie Bernadette Tuason (@marievelous), it also brings in the fallout of museum appreciation in the age of social media: people “doing it for the gram”.

In @marievelous’s viral Twitter thread, she stated the upsetting things that she herself had witnessed during a recent visit to the National Museum of Natural History:


museum manners inqpop

museum manners inqpop

People had differing thoughts on the matter. Some thought that it was just appropriate to call out this unsettling behaviour by most people who visited the museum:

While others thought the Twitter thread was straight up snooty:

But this maybe a good way to bring to light the manners that should be observed when visiting any kind of museum, exhibit, or even gallery.

Let’s admit it: Some people have limited experience with museums. For all we know, the people’s visit to National Museum of Natural History may very well be the first in their lifetime. So in the interest of informing people about the do’s and don’t’s when visiting any institution that displays items with artistic, cultural, historical, or scientific importance, here are some points to consider when making that trip:

Be on time

When the museum states it operates between 8:00am to 5:00pm, they are expected to be closed beyond those hours. Don’t force the guards to accommodate you because they really can’t.

Do some research before your visit

Let’s all be honest here–museums are, more often that not, funereal in nature. Quiet and somber, museums may bore you if you’re only half-interested in what you’re looking at. Do some research before you visit any museum. Is the spotlight on artifacts or art pieces you’re actually fascinated with? Or are you more for interactive exhibits where you can put your tactile sense to good use? Speaking of interactive exhibits…

Touch and appreciate carefully

Just because a museum is interactive in nature does not give people license to be reckless with the displays. Touch objects ever so carefully. If it’s no longer necessary to touch an item in order to appreciate it, then you can look at it from a few meters away. It’s okay. We all have varying degrees of appreciation.

Take photos only when it is allowed

A “photography allowed” rule inside museums is a modern occurence. So go make the most of it but be careful with your surroundings–avoid tripping up on displays or people’s feet. You don’t want to end up like these people who ruined things for the sake of photos:


Yes, those were real cases.

Also, you can always bust the myth surrounding the idea that flash photography ruins delicate artifacts, but when a sign states “no flash photography”, you do as it says. Rules are rules.

Join tour groups

It is best to join tour groups if your budgets allow you to do so. Tour groups are led by people who are well-versed in the collections on display inside museums and exhibits–you can learn a lot from them.

Yes, go “do it for the gram”…

…but do it wisely. Share your tour photos with the rest of the (social media) world because not everyone is blessed to visit premier places like that–an indulgence in today’s economy, really. A selfie or two on site won’t hurt, but please do put the focus on the art or history you’re learning from your trip.

So in conclusion, go visit museums, art exhibits, or even galleries. But do mind your manners. It is but right.

Also, do keep off the grass. Ano beh.




Other InqPOP! stories you might like:

Tourists deface at least 100 bamboo trees in Kyoto’s famous Arashiyama Bamboo Grove

Lebanon’s ‘Tower of Bitterness’ transformed into colorful public installation art

Twitterverse decided to calculate The Rock’s crazy-as-hell jump in Skyscraper

A circus in China ties down an endangered tiger so people can ride it and take photos

LOOK: Snake being eaten alive freaks out, hungry frog gives zero f*cks


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