The Cultural Phenomena of Selfies

The impact of the SELFIE on our culture has started to intrigue me. As I see my little granddaughter love looking at (and taking) pictures and videos of herself on the iPhone and iPad… I wonder what the long term impact will be. There are very few images of me, due to the fact that taking and developing images was expensive and I was a second child. The culture of taking photos back then (beyond for special occasions) was not common.

In wonder about the impact of selfies on our culture? I wonder if there is a difference in views on selfies, what types of selfies and meaning of them in different cultures around the world?

For now I am consciously aware of, documenting and follow the evolution of the selfie in my own family, at school, in different countries I visit and in the media.


Image credit Elena- 22 months (picked her own filters too)


Image (taking with Laptop webcam) by Elena- 7 months old


My iPhoneography class at school collaborated on a list of TYPES OF SELFIES, and came up with the following

  • outstretched arm
  • duckface
  • mirror
  • “tongue”
  • smile/pout
  • tilted head
  • peace sign
  • sign language for “I love you”
  • rapper fingers
  • eyes squinting
  • winking
  • funny face
  • shadow

Here are their RECOMMENDATIONS AND TIPS for taking selfies:

  • don’t take it from below (your chin will look disproportionate)
  • don’t take it from above (your nose will look disproportionate)
  • have good light (don’t be in poorly lit environments)
  • be appropriate (keep LARK in mind)

When I started using Google Glass in school, it was one of the most common reactions for students to immediately grab their phone to order to take a selfie.



Selfie- Photo Credit (used with permission) Marina D.


Image used with permission by Jack

Looks like I am not the only one wondering about selfie and what does it mean for us as a culture?

“ordinary people doing ordinary things”

Dove, the creator of the Photoshop Transformation video, created another important video. This time about girls and their power to create their own image of beauty and redefine the view of society on beauty.
In partnership with the Sundance Institute, directed by Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Cynthia Wade and produced by Sharon Liese, Sefie reveals how we have the power to redefine what is beautiful in all of us. Selfie captures the digital journey of a group of high school girls and their mothers, as they create a new type of selfie – one that celebrates their unique beauty. Dove wants to inspire all women to redefine beauty

Interested in reading more about the phenomena of selfies?