• Max Cisneros

To Selfie or Not to Selfie

What is the virtue of a selfie? And how can I make the selfie work for me?

Selfies are fascinating to me because they’re everywhere now and in our LOUD-BRIGHT-PUSH-NOTIFICATION society selfies also break social rules.

Selfies are a democratizing gesture and they give us the chance to choose how we identify. Out of 10 to 20 pictures I choose the one I want you to see. I don’t need to be rich to make my own self-portraits over and over and over….Plus, selfies are informal, “undignified” people of high stations and old-fashioned ideals just don’t get it. We don’t have teams of publicity agents defining our brand and personality. Armed with the selfie, we can do that ourselves.

There are three kinds of selfie takers: communicators, autobiographers, and self-publicists. Most people think they are a communicator... While self-publicists are the smallest selfie-taking group. Intentions behind the selfie are not always clear even to the creator. The picture will always be incomplete. Still, selfies tell us a great deal about how we see ourselves and how we want to be seen. Selfies are a relatively new phenomena and I suspect like everything else, we'll take it for granted.

Whatever the significance of selfies, I like to simply see them as shared & stored information (you're welcome CIA/NSA/FBI...). Selfies are content. I have often said,

“If a picture is worth a thousand words than surely a selfie is practically a journal entry.”

We can choose to use selfies but we cannot control how others perceive them or who downloads them. I can use them as a shout-out to the social media peeps, as a means of social validation (STOP LOOKING AT ME!!!). I can bring attention to a cause or an event, like a press release. Or I can simply store them in a file, where I can revisit them later. Much like a dairy.

Selfies bring us together. They show our commonality and give us the tools to shape our own image. Like all technologies we must be mindful about the drawbacks while being be openly playful about the possibilities. I take a lot of selfies. Am I a communicator, an autobiographer, or a self-publicist? Don't know. WHO CARES? Honestly, I’m just figuring out this tech like everybody else.

Happy Selfie-ing! Mx

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