10 Selfies you should never take
Some believe that the need to take selfies is narcissistic. This could especially be seen in the people who feel it is necessary to record every aspect of their lives in photographs, and post them all over social media for the rest of the world to see.
But has this need to take selfies, even when doing something potentially dangerous, or at the most inappropriate time, gone too far?
Moneybags journalist Jessica Wood looks at ten examples of selfies that have been taken in real life, which you should never try.
- Taking a selfie while driving
This recently made the news when a girl from Kwa-Zulu Natal took a photo of herself while driving on the N3 highway.
The comment attached to the photo was; “So yesterday I was driving on the N3 trying to take a selfie. lol. I kept looking at the camera and forgetting to watch the road! But I guess I finally I got it kind of right! I still look scared as s***.”
This has led to a backlash on social media, as this incident took place just after the recent Easter weekend, which saw a high number of deaths on our roads (287 deaths), with the most accidents taking place in Kwa-Zulu Natal.
However, this is not the first time that someone has taken a selfie while driving. There have been other similar incidents where people have taken selfies, and shortly after have died in a vehicle accident.
Trying to take a selfie while driving is not only putting yourself at risk by not concentrating properly, but you are putting everyone else on the road in harm’s way too.
- Taking a selfie at a dangerous height
There was an incident recently of two school students who were trying to take a selfie of themselves at the top of a waterfall. While trying to take the photograph, they both slipped and fell to their deaths.
Trying to take a photograph, and standing with your back to the edge of a cliff or tall building and trying to take a photograph is a sure way to have an accident. Not only can you not see where you are going if you try to get closer to the edge, you are also more focused on taking the actual photograph and looking good, than what you are doing or where you are standing.
It only takes a spilt second for your daring and impressive photo to end is disaster.
- Taking a selfie with dangerous animals
In South Africa there are many wild, and potentially dangerous, animals, such as baboons, that roam free. In many areas there are signs which alert people to the danger, and also ask them not to feed the animals. But, often, they signs are ignored.
But animals in the wild are not the only ones that can cause harm. There has been noise on social media about the Lujan Zoo in Buenos Aires, Argentina that allows people to get into the animal enclosures with animals such as lions, tigers and bear, and allows them to take selfies.
Just because these animals are in a zoo it does not mean that they are tame or will not harm you. Things can turn ugly in the blink of an eye.
Turning your back on an animal to take selfie is probably not the smartest thing to do.
Perhaps we should start putting up signs saying “Don’t take selfies with the animals.”
- Taking a selfie while operating heavy machinery
It may look cool to take a selfie while using a large and imposing looking piece of machinery, but things can go wrong when you aren’t paying attention.
There are several selfies, and other photographs, of people on the web using and posing with pieces of machinery, this includes things such as lawnmowers and chain saws. If you were to lose your grip on the machine, even if it is not turned on, you can do damage to yourself and the machine.
- Taking a selfie while playing chicken
Playing chicken, a game where you stand in front of a train or a car and only move at the last minute, may seem like the cool thing to do to impress your friends or prove how brave you are.
Though, this is dangerous and risky enough when you are facing the object heading towards you, but is it really wise to turn your back on the train as it speeds towards you just to take a selfie with it?
There are photos on the Internet of just this. People have turned their backs on the fast approaching train and are taking a selfie with the train in the background.
If you miss judge the speed and distance of the train, or something happens and you cannot move out of the way in time, your need to show how brave you are could possibly be the last thing that you do.
- Taking a selfie at a funeral
It may be hard to believe (for some people anyway) but there have been more than one instance where people have taken a selfie either with the coffin, or in some cases the corpse, in the background. There is even a Tumblr account dedicated to these types of selfies.
For many this could be viewed as being inappropriate, not to mention disrespectful to the deceased and their close friends and family.
- Taking a selfie while committing a crime
This is perhaps one of the stupidest times that a person could take a selfie, but there have been cases where this has been done. There are photos all over the Internet that people have taken just before committing a crime.
There is a good chance that you could be identified from the photograph, and even if you are not identifiable, the social media account that you posted the photo from could probably be traced back to you as well.
- Taking a selfies while being stopped by a traffic cop
You are not meant to use your cell phone while you are driving. So taking a selfie when a traffic officer stops you probably isn’t the smartest thing to do. But people have done it.
Who would want to advertise the fact that they were speeding or doing something else illegal in their car anyway?
- Taking private photos of yourself
There have been several instances in the past few months of celebrities’ who have had their iCloud accounts hacked and personal photos of them have been leaked onto the Internet.
It is probably advisable not to take these types of photos of yourself, but if you really feel the need to do it, you need to be prepared for the consequences of what might happen if the photos get out.
In their book Don’t film yourself having sex and other advice for the age of social media, Emma Sadlier and Tamsyn de Beer state: “[We] should point out that there is nothing illegal about filming yourself having sex, or sending naked pictures of yourself to someone, provided that it is consensual and everyone is of age. In fact, some people encourage it… The problem arises, however, when that sexy video that you made to keep the spark alive suddenly falls into the wrong hands and your intended audience of one turns into an audience of billions. And because digital images and videos can be so easily shared, the chance of this happening is all the more likely.”
So before you take that next provocative image of yourself, stop and think. What will you do if you lose control of the image and who sees it or how it is used?
- Taking awkward selfies
There seems to be a growing trend of people taking selfies of themselves in the most unusual and awkward positions, which often do not turn out flattering at all.
Even though we are in an age where people feel the need to advertise everything that is going on in their lives, and your social media pages are a reflection everything that you do, people are still conscious of what they display to the world.
For example, you will only put up a profile picture that shows you at your best, or carefully select the types of links you want to share. If you are so careful about all of this, why would you put an unflattering selfie of yourself doing a yoga move?
Is it really necessary that people see you like this? Wouldn’t it be better to simply change your status to something witty and interesting to make people think you are up to something that probably sounds a lot more interesting than it really is?
These are only some of the weird and wonderful selfies that people feel the need to take. Before you take your next selfie, perhaps you should stop and think about it. Is what you are doing really worth sharing with all of your social media followers?
It is also important to remember that the things that you do and say on social media can have negative consequences. For more information, click here.