Would you believe that selfie photographs have been around for well over 150 years! The first selfie was taken back in 1839 by an amateur photographer by the name of Robert Cornelius. In its modern day form the selfie didn’t even exist ten years ago, and really has only been around for little over 5 years.
The selfies rise as a phenomenon has been rapid, and last year in 2013 the word ‘selfie’ was awarded the Oxford Dictionaries award of International Word of the Year. The phenomenon can be attributed mostly to smartphones with front facing cameras and their ability to connect to the internet, so those selfies can be shared across the world. However, researchers at the University of Georgia are the latest group to conduct a study into why exactly the selfie phenomenon has taken the world by storm.
A New Study in Georgia
Led by psychology professor Keith Campbell, the study will round up 300 people to take selfies, get them take selfies in the laboratory and then get the respondents to rate this controlled collection of selfie photos. Professor Campbell hopes that some answers as to why we are seemingly obsessed with selfies will be revealed. The three main reasons why people take selfie photos seem to currently hinge around three main areas, which are self absorption, for a social connection and as an art form. The study hopes to reveal some of the mysteries surrounding selfies, and find out whether taking too many selfie photos should be considered a form of narcissism.
A Case of Selfie Obsession
While most people will take a selfie here and there without too much worrying about it, one guy from the United Kingdom became so obsessed it almost ended his life. Teenager Danny Bowman took his obsession with selfies to the stage where he would spend up to 10 hours in a day and take up to 200 selfies in his search for the perfect shot. The obsession got worse for Danny, who dropped out of school, lost weight and locked himself up at home for around 6 months before he attempted something terrible, to end his own life.