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Selfie Culture 101: Selfie-Steem and Selfie-Xpression

  • Date Submitted: 11/13/2013 01:42 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 70.2 
  • Words: 1245
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The “selfie.”
Every time I hear that word, I cringe a little. It is commonly used in everyday conversation such as “Let us take a selfie,” “Have you seen Katy Perry’s new selfie?” and “Whose selfie is that?” I can’t stop imagining those photos seen on the internet. I don’t even know where the word originates. From Paris Hilton, Rihanna, and Shane Warne to Hilary Clinton, the Obamas, and Pope Francis, almost everyone has done it. Eduard Grunk painted himself several selfies. The movie The Wanted Life used it as a theme for their theatrical movie poster. Even Justin Beiber made his music video, “Beauty and the Beat,” a selfie video (#Thinkfluencer).
According to the Oxford University Press, publisher of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), ‘selfie’ is defined as “a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam, and uploaded to a social media website” (Steinmetz). These include those self-portraits with high and low camera angles, duck faces, peace signs, and dirty mirrors.
I stopped to look at these photos and, initially, I was ridiculously irritated by them.   I am not ashamed to admit that, when I see pictures of people like this, for a split second I hate cameras for being invented.   I'm not alone either. Many are also hesitant to take and share photos of themselves, for fear of looking vain, feeling vulnerable, or being scrutinized.
But still, social networking sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr are filled with selfies. Some netizens upload entire albums to Facebook of their photo booth sessions. Others take edited pictures of what they wore that day, or caption a photo with mild to severe self-deprecation.
However, as I judged those photos from the web, I thought that I had better check my past photos to make sure I did not have those images. I then scrolled through the camera on my phone only to find ten selfies in the past week. Am I one of those annoying people? If I am, why do I pull off these stunts?...


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