Notes on the Selfie Culture

Notes on the Selfie Culture
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Jahangeer Lone

Youngsters always head and lead the elders when it comes to any new social-trend. In fact, they nurture and create the trends and fashions and then elders covertly try to groom themselves, but always fail. The elders somehow and to some extent give a little semblance with their counterparts, youngsters. Wearing branded watches, clothes, boots, specs and colouring hairs is frequent among the new generation, teens particularly..
In the meantime, a new obsession has invaded- that is, the Selfie. The Selfie is a photograph of yourself, taken by yourself. It is the popular phenomenon where people use their smart phones . In antiquity, our ancestors merely got a photograph either for an identity or a ration card.
But , nowadays, our phones are flooded with a plethora of photographs. After clicking scores of photographs we choose the favorites and delete the ones we don’t like.
In the past, family members would surpass a long route to a photo studio for a group photograph, but nowadays though the cameras are accessible 24×7, no one is anxious for a family photograph. The smart phones are used for this special business. The selfies are taken from planes to high altitudes, press conferences to high level meets and from weddings to mourning’s. Selfie sticks add a new flavour to the business. These sticks actually widen the angle of view and a good number of people can accommodate in the frame.
Selfies are taken either individually or collectively. At the entrance or while leaving any Institution, selfies are now mandatory. The main motive behind selfies is to upload them on social media , that is, Facebook, Instagram and twitter and wait eagerly for the likes and comments from friends. Smart phones allow us to take multiple photos, apply the filter we most prefer and select our favorite image for an upload on social media. The selfies are taken by activating the front camera of the Smart phone, holding it out in front of yourself with one arm and clicking a photograph. Those between 18 to 40 years of age are mostly involved in the trend, because they are intense users of social media. This particular crowd uploads selfies on a regular basis to get connected with their friends and colleagues in a complete visual way. The better your selfie is the more likes you pick up on social media. There is a particular sect among the selfie-takers who upload the most alluring selfies for a particular person they admire.
Pertinently, with the evolution of selfies, the autograph hunter has declined. The fans today want nothing more than to pose for a selfie with their idols on their Smart phones. Even the sacred places are not spared without taking a selfie.
Though the modus operandi for taking selfies may change but majority of selfie takers take it with smiling faces. The women folk pose with rolling lips and with one eye blinking.
Though selfies are in vogue, but many a times, selfi takers have fallen to their death while losing their balance in a precarious position. In a report, it was proclaimed that in 2015 , more people had been killed taking selfies that year than by shark attacks. The most likely cause of death is falling from a great height, with people going to extreme lengths to take a selfie to impress the followers on social media. Given this and the fact that that selfie culture is embedded in societies, and it is a trend, utmost care should be taken while taking selfies

—Jahangeer Lone hails from Gund, Ganderbal. He can be reached at: jahangirlone860@gmail.com

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