IS SOCIAL MEDIA SCREWING OVER EXPLORERS?
The failed expedition and vitriolic public reactions that followed raised broad questions about the makings of an explorer in the 21st century, and the evolving mechanics of the adventure industry. Authenticity and ambition used to go hand in hand on professional expeditions. Now, some wonder whether authenticity has been usurped by accessibility—the need to invite the world aboard, or risk being left at home. “They might want to think about just having fun adventures for themselves, not somebody else,” wrote Icelandic Alpine Club member Sveinn Sveinsson in a scathing critique of the trip. Perhaps the most significant question is this: Have we reached a point where it is more important for adventurers to be shrewd with presentation than proven in hardcore environments?