Travel vlogs, as a type of user-generated content, participate in the shaping of destination image (DI). This digital reality, often seen on the platform YouTube, eases the production and consumption of tourism, in which meaning-making processes take place, such as the framing of travel destinations in different contexts. DI is thus made sense of through vloggers' and followers’ perceptions and evaluations, which influence the messages conveyed in and through vlogs. However, despite the existence of previous research on the power social media have on travellers’ behaviours and destination management organizations’ advertising strategies, only a few touch upon the creation and discussion of narratives arising from vlogs’ content. There is a particular lack of focus on viewers’ negotiations of the framed DI in vlogs, especially missing out on their engagement in the comments section. For this reason, using Switzerland as a case study, this thesis aimed to answer the following research question: How and in what ways do non-Swiss travel vloggers shape the destination image of Switzerland on YouTube, and how do their viewers negotiate these in and through their engagements in the comment section? With a netnography approach, Hall’s (1980) coding and decoding model and other helpful theoretical concepts, 26 vlogs and respective comments were analysed and coded. The findings revealed that Switzerland’s DI is shaped by different framings tied into experiences, narratives and subjective negotiations of it. The results not only allowed to answer the thesis question but also highlight the theoretical information given and the relevance of the realm of vlogs, in connection with broader themes such as digitalization and tourism management.

Nicky van Es
Tourism, Culture & Society
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication

Maura Stöckli. (2023, August). SWITZERLAND IS AN ANOMALY. Tourism, Culture & Society. Retrieved from