Adrienne BoettingerThursday,23 January 2014

The Snap:

Selfies aren’t really new but dear-sweet-mother-of-pearl, they’re everywhere! The Pope, the Prez, the Palin, the Pundit, the Park Ranger (or rather the sea eagle who stole the park ranger’s camera); no one can resist the urge for self-documentation. Before cell phones were owned by everyone from fetus to geriatric, selfies involved marking one’s initials into a tree, bench, desk or block of wet cement. But in those golden days of yesteryear, the only people viewing your selfie were those passing said tree, sidewalk, etc. Now there’s nowhere you can look and not see a selfie. Funerals, bathrooms, meat lockers – there’s nowhere you’ll be safe.

The Download:

Showing the depths of my devotion to you dear, dedicated readers, I just read an entire article by James Franco on one on the many selfies of Bieber. My IQ probably dipped a bit and I have a faint headache from hitting my head against the wall but it was worth it to try to get to the bottom of this selfie craze.

The urge to have some proof that we were here is primal. We all want to leave our mark; to have some sort of recognition that we mattered. But does that mark have to be half-naked in a bathroom and broadcast on the Twitterz?

There are some truly sick selfies like those of the British serial killer who took selfies before stalking some of her victims. Although nowhere near as diabolical, there’s also the parade of selfies from self-important celebrities hell-bent on extending their 15 minutes of fame.

As my sister would want me to mention, selfies are highly discriminatory as those shorter-in-stature are not so adept at taking them. It’s really about the length of one’s arms so that someone like me who is not excessively tall but who, in the words of the dick salesman at the golf store, has freakishly long arms can at least get my head in the picture without attaching a camera to a stick like this woman did here.

Want to take a unique selfie? That ship has pretty much sailed but you can take one that will make your friends and random strangers not want to punch you in the throat. First, the key is to be selective. Take a buttload of selfies and gratuitously post them hither and yon and you’ll annoy the bejeezus out of people. Second, don’t be naked or half-naked. You’ll just look like a jackass. Third, accept that you’re not going to look good; instead try for something interesting or include an adorable animal.

Or, decide to make your selfies mean something, like the #NotAMartyr protest in Lebanon where people posted selfies in remembrance of the teen killed shortly after taking one himself. You can even turn your desire for self-promotion into a charitable act with the help of the Selfie Police who will goad you into donating $1 for each selfie you post. If we got the Karadashians to pony up, we could wipe out poverty.

Take Action!

Hat Tips:

The Wire, GawkerOne Green PlanetThe AtlanticNew York TimesitvNBC NewsFast Company, Image Credit: Adrienne Boettinger

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