I despise selfies. As someone who is part of "Generation Me," (not to be confused with the “Me Generation”) I accept the high levels of narcissism and entitlement amongst us, and because I do, I've also learned to deal with it. The true epitome of this narcissism is the selfie. The selfie is, at best, at self-taken photo of you living your life and having a good time, while at worst it’s the ultimate plea for approval. Quick, everyone! Look at me! Tell me I’m pretty! On the rare occasion that I take a selfie, it is to directly make fun of those people: duck face pout, wide-dazzled eyes, flawless make-up, and the whole nine yards.
Although the term dates back to 2005 when photographer Jim Krause first used it in a discussion about self-taken pictures, it’s only been in the last few years that selfies have really taken off. Can you remember the last time you logged on to Facebook or Twitter and didn't see at least a few selfies? THEY. ARE. EVERYWHERE.
The trend has become so a part of popular culture that the word "selfie" found its way into the Oxford English Dictionary in 2013 after being called the
"word of the year." Groan. Smartphone makers who conducted independent studies found that 30 percent of all photos taken with these products are selfies. Doubly groan.
But selfies are not without their own brand of controversy. Sometimes they end up in the wrong hands (I'm looking at you, Scarlett Johansson), wind up on sites as a form of revenge porn, implicate people in wrongdoings, and are, at least according to a writer at Jezebel, a cry for help. I'm still sticking to my "Look at me! Look at me!" theory, but I digress.
No matter your feeling on this new way of self expression, as long as people are intrigued with the way they look and a fish face bass mouth is regarded as attractive, selfies won’t be going anywhere. In 2013 alone, the hashtag "selfie" was used 34,924,648 times, with next in line being #seflies (yes, plural), at 3,692,570. According to statistics, "the original #selfie hashtag grew more than 200 percent in usage since January 2013, when it wasn’t even one of the top 100 tags used on Instagram.” Yikes. Welcome to the party, those of you new to the selfie trend; the Millennials have been here for a while now and have this down to a science. Try to keep up.
So, because we would cease to be a society that moves forward and evolves into even further depths of narcissism if we're not photographing our every move, we now have the "couplie." What is it, you ask? If you didn't figure it out in the last two seconds by the name, I'll tell you: it's a selfie style photo, but it’s taken of two people instead of one. Get it? Couple equals "couplie!"
It may not be the most novel thing for those who are really into taking photos of themselves and sometimes others, but the couplie hashtag has been on the rise since Kylie Minogue posted a photo of herself and her hairstylist back in November. Since then there's been a 140 percent rise in the use of that particular hashtag. Then in December, according to a gift card firm, One4all, 60 percent of the photos that went up over the Christmas holiday were couplies. Yes, couplies are about to ruin your Facebook and Instagram feeds just like selfies do.
If people want to support the impending overload of couplies, the that's their thing. Personally, although I am guilty of taking two couplies in my life with the full intention of mocking those who do it seriously, I don't really see why the obsession exists. Isn't it exhausting to constantly be taking photos of yourself, let alone photos of yourself and another person? And what if you and your boyfriend or girlfriend break up? Can you imagine how heartbreaking/annoying/infuriating it will be to delete all those photos? I know that's the last thing I'd want to do. Can’t we at least put a daily limit on this type of behavior? Maybe four tops?
Realistically, shouldn't "art" entail something besides a close up of your pores without any indication of where you are because your head is taking up every millimeter of the lens? I don't care how into your looks and the looks of your partner you may be, give your camera a break and go photograph a tree or something. Nature is really cool, you guys. And, in case you didn't know, change is the spice of life. Implement those two realizations into your day, and you're less likely to be blocked by your friends and family.
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