Are you a selfie addict? Do you just love taking pictures of yourself with other people or in fun places? If so you probably received the popular selfie stick this last Christmas as a gift. Such a shame really because there is a growing trend and reasons to explain why are selfie sticks banned in many public places.
Taking selfies has been a growing phenomena in recent years. With fancy camera phones, reversible cameras and fears of strangers nicking our cameras. Little wonder they’ve caught on.
Who can forget the famous selfie with Barack Obama, David Cameron and the Danish PM?
Or all the celebrities on a selfie at a show last year which went viral on twitter?
Admittedly not by me.
As you’ve probably guessed I’m not really a selfie person. I never have been. I rarely take pictures of myself, as you’ll notice on this blog.
In the past if I wanted a picture of myself with friends or people I’ve met I would often ask someone passing by “Excuse me, would you mind taking a picture for me?” To date my camera was never stolen so it didn’t work out too bad.
Yet Facebook and many fellow travel blogs are littered with selfies left, right and centre. If I ever do go on Facebook I can see the stream full of selfies.
Some travel bloggers take some amazing pictures with their selfie stick. Just look at this fabulous one by Samantha and Yeison of Mytanfeet.
To see more great selfies have a look towards the end of this article.
So why are selfie sticks banned?
Well they are not banned everywhere, yet at least.
Recently news headlines have been reporting that selfie sticks have been banned at the football grounds of English clubs Arsenal and Tottenham. (These are two London based clubs and arch rivals.)
It seems that the reason for banning selfie sticks is due to safety. This long rod of picture magic is seen as a potential weapon.
Well I guess if you combine the small minority of tribal sporting fines, a passionate fixture and a long rod in their hand then who knows what might happen?
I suspect the chances of something bad happening is quite rare.
I do also wonder if people complained because the person in front of them was blocking their view by holding up a big stick with a camera on the end.
Did you know that South Korea has banned selfie sticks?
Well maybe not banned them but they have banned people from selling them. Or at least “uncertified” selfie sticks.
Yes, that is right South Korea, not North Korea.
The reason for the ban is quite different to these London football clubs. It appears that South Korea objects to selfie sticks using unauthorised blue tooth technology. They claim this could blue tooth technology could caused other electronic devises to malfunction. Or even worse pose a health risk.
If this is the case then is there a chance that the banning of selfie sticks is a little mis-guided? Shouldn’t the blue-tooth technology be banned and not the stick?
Since I first published this article the internet has been inundated with headlines of selfie-sticks being banned:-
“Selfie sticks banned in US attractions”
“National Gallery in London bans Selfie Sticks”
“Selfie Stick ban goes into effect at French attractions”
“Public venues are banning selfie sticks”
It would seem that the reasons for the ban vary from the dangers of people having a long stick could be a weapon, to people blindly swinging around posing for themselves oblivious to the world around them. Even if they do have selfie sticks with remote control.
Technology has changed our world
It is undoubtedly true that technology has changed our world and at a rapid pace.
I think one of my enduring memories of the 2012 London Olympics was the exceptionally high number of people taking pictures and videos with iPads. I must admit I found this a little crazy. I say that because I’m someone who likes to think of things from a practical perspective. Why would I want to bring a large, expensive and bulky iPad to a sporting event? If I want to take pictures or videos then I’d bring a good quality and easy to carry camera or phone. They can fit in my pocket.
It seems this technology back lash is ongoing. Only last season Manchester United banned people from bringing iPads into Old Trafford. Maybe the club think like me?
So what are the benefits of a selfie stick?
I’ve never used a selfie stick. I also don’t think I’ve ever been featured in a picture which has used a selfie stick either.
Yet my bride received a selfie stick as a gift for Christmas so I had a quick look at the box. Here are some of the features it uses to promote itself:-
– extends to 360 degree pose-able head
– fits most smartphones and compact cameras
– good for self portraits and group photos
– take pictures over crowds at concerts and public events (I suspect they will soon be banned at concerts too)
– look at hard to reach places like gutters or in roof cavities
– creative film making
– extreme sports
Well they all seem like a compelling case to buy a selfie stick. I can see the attraction.
Some more great selfies from a selfie stick
As promised here are some more great selfies from fellow travel bloggers, which one is your favourite?
Jim Cheney of Uncovering PA.
Kach and Jonathan of Two Monkeys Travel Group.
Megan and Mike from Mapping Megan.
Are you a selfie addict? Do you use a selfie stick? If so, has anyone objected to you using it? Share your experiences with me in the comments below.