culture

The History Of The Selfie

A selfie is a self-portrait photograph or group photograph featuring the photographer, typically taken with a hand-held digital camera or camera phone.

Since the invention of the camera obscura in the fifth century out species have been edging ever further into the evolution of a self-portrait. But only in the last few years has the term ‘to take a selfie’ become a documented and common place act and is now part of the furniture within the Oxford English Dictionary after being coined “the word of the year” in 2013. Here is a useful timeline of the selfie/self portrait using a camera device put together by yours truly.

1839 – The first ever selfie documented was taken by American photographer Robert Cornelius. He recorded on the back of the photograph “The first light Picture ever taken. 1839.”

1900 – The invention of the Kodak Brownie box camera led to self-portraiture becoming increasingly popular. Thirteen year old Russian Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna was one of the first teenagers to take her own picture using a mirror.

2002 – The earliest use of the word ‘selfie’ was noted. It first appeared in an Australian internet forum, actually making the term selfie an Australian word.

2004 – The concept of uploading group self-taken selfies became a popular act on an Australian website. This was mainly photos taken on a disposable camera with some photos on the site dating back to the late 1990’s.

2004-9 – The common use of selfies was dominant on online social networks, in particular Myspace. These photos were usually flash-blinded self-portraits often using the reflections of mirrors.

2009 – Flikr users used selfies to describe seemingly endless self-portraits posted by teenage girls.

2010 – The invention of the iPhone 4 and the front facing camera changed the selfie game forever. Apps such as Instagram and selfie sites such as ItisMee led to a resurge in selfies.

2012 – Time magazine considered selfie to be one of the “top 10 buzzwords” of the year.

2013 – According to a survery, two-thirds of Australian females aged 18-35 partook in the act of taking selfies, mostly for Facebook.

2013 – Selfie has now been entered into the Oxford English Dictionary and the whole world is going to shit.

TODAY:
– Instagram has over 53 million photos tagged with the hashtag #selfie.
– The word ‘selfie’ was mentioned in Facebook status’s over 368,000 times during a one-week period in 2013.
– The hashtag ‘selfie was used in more than 150,000 tweets in the space of one week on Twitter in 2013.
– Selfie sticks and other accessories are deemed normal to walk around whilst on holiday, going to shops, using the toilet and so on..

What’s next? Well seeing as the ‘selfie’ is currently peaking all peaks that ever peaked, this can only mean the only way is down, right? Potentially correct. Recently posts and research suggest the next big craze to be ‘Dronies.’
The art of taking pictures using drones. Jesus take the wheel.

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