We all know the trend of ‘selfies’ that has ferociously captivated the social networking world but what are our views on taking them, uploading them and hitting the well sought after like button? I’m not going begin by boring you with the ins and outs of the ‘art’ if it shall be named as such mainly because as social networkers, we are already more than familiar with the craze. Instead, I’m going to present you with a few of my views which you may agree or disagree with entirely.
Of course these narrow minded fixtures of us are by all means a natural part of our ‘facebooking’ life and even by and large our lives in general. Think carefully, which is more abnormal: the Facebook friend who updates her profile picture every Sunday to another borderline vain shot of herself; in clothes of which she probably borrowed from her friend; captioned by what is probably the name of a club that she probably visited for one drink which she probably got photographed with; which is probably occupied by one of them not so fancy umbrella or sparkler straws (which by the way, we are all aware are available in all Poundland stores). Or, are we more accustomed to that awkward blue box with the perfect white silhouette of a face and neck which by the way is the shape of absolutely no human or mutant. I am confident in making the assumption that nearly all of us, from all age ranges would agree that the second is the most abnormal and the first the worrying norm that continues to dominate our modern social networking lives.
Are these hedonistic shots even a true presentation of ourselves? Ever heard your nan tell you that its what is inside that counts? Ever listened to her? Well what if it is our personality that people remember and we’re too busy working out which angle we look skinnier from, which effect we look the most tanned in and whether people will recognise that we wore that same top two years ago in that photo that your sister tagged you in. Does two years make it vintage? What I mean here is, mostly, we don’t even look like them uncomfortably forced pictures we upload and it would be sad for us to truly believe that that one picture created more happiness than that £3 we lent to our friend at work who forgot his lunch money. Again.
But what if these ‘selfies’ aren’t for a hedonistic benefit at all? ‘Snapchatting’ that one friend who you trust with your life that picture of you pulling a face that you wouldn’t be seen dead doing in public puts ‘selfies’ into an entirely different context. If this is essentially still a ‘selfie’, then they become that ‘bit of fun’ and cease to be the intimidating hedonism we all fear. Instead, they are that very thing that brightened our friends day or that very snapchat ‘mystory’ we are all too embarrassed to admit made us chuckle perhaps a little too much.
The meaning of ‘selfies’ has also been transformed with the recent cancer awareness trend that soon became global. Here, they were used not in a hedonistic way which we are all too quick to assume ‘selfies’ are intended but rather in an altruistic way to raise awareness for the deadly disease that has touched many of our lives. Perhaps then, selfies aren’t always about that vain, doom and gloom we link them to and perhaps, through keeping up with the times and posting the no make-up ‘selfie’ covered in Instagram filters we may well save someone’s life.
Now, all of this is not to say that I am either against them or for them in their entirety. I am known to be impartial to more than a couple of ‘selfies’ myself. Rather, it is to discuss the topic which has dominated so much of our news, so many of our conversations and has even been known to have a mention or two in our English Dictionary.