Sonisphere is set to be the first UK festival to ban mobile phones as we encourage festival-goers to “live in the moment”.
Fans holding mobile phones and tablets aloft to video gigs is an increasingly familiar sight. But it can annoy both bands and other fans, while many people bemoan the fact they attend gigs with friends only to find their companions spend the whole time checking their social media feeds. Sonisphere wants to put a stop to this by going entirely phone free.
Artists including the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s, Jack White and Alt J have put up signs at their gigs encouraging attendees not to use their phones, but Sonisphere is going a step further with an outright ban on mobile phones and Facebook and Twitter usage across the entire festival site.
“When I saw what Turkey’s Prime Minister managed to achieve by banning Twitter and how the country took to the streets to live in the moment, I thought it would be a good idea if Sonisphere’s customers lived in the moment too,” says Sonisphere festival digital consultant, David Harrison.
How will the iniative be enforced? And what if you use your phone as a camera and want to take some snapshots at the festival?
“We will be searching all bags, clothes and we have lockers set up with a ‘Camera exchange scheme’,” explains David. “So if you want to still take pictures you can leave your phone in the locker and and swap it for one of our more traditional film cameras. We have 100s of these old film cameras you can swap your mobile for, they are great fun.”