“Pictures taken of oneself while holding the camera at arms length,” is the Urban Dictionary definition of “Selfies.”

One of Millions of "Selfies!"

I Googled ‘Selfies’ and in an instant, there were 675,000 results.

Note the lips, the glasses and the beautiful flowing hair in this "Selfie!"

Teenagers take photos of every movement they make, every meal they eat, every place they visit, every friend they are with, every party they attend, and immediately post these photos on Instagram and Facebook. This is accompanied with text, tweet and comment reflecting teens’ immediate thoughts, desires, impulses – there is little or no thought to editing or waiting the 24 hour ‘grace’ period before disseminating information - ‘Selfies’ are an extremely popular and innate component of teenage branding and self-promotion.

"Selfie" Mouth and Hand poses…..

Young people run wild with expensive smart phones taking countless photos of themselves making funny pouty faces and weird hand gestures as though they are posing for Vogue. Some take it way too far and promote partying and promiscuity! Plenty of Internet “Selfie Sites’ read, “Basically we love naked chicks. Submit your own photos if you want.” Yikes!

Action "Selfie!"

After posting photos of Instagram and Facebook, teens strive to receive “Likes ” from friends and strangers. The more “Likes” they receive, the better they feel about themselves. Something is very wrong with this notion and yet very easy to understand with teenagers.

Peace Children posing for "Selfies" at Cochella.

I have raised my kids to be somewhat humble, and yet as a parent I am in a constant tug-a -war with societal influences – it used to be billboards, television and magazines but now the exposure and pull from the viral world is more powerful and somedays, I think it is winning!

Two teens on a beach posing for "Selfies."

All smart phones have cameras and most have flip screens in order to see the photos that are being taking; the internet is everywhere with free wifi at Starbucks and school. Do they even sell Flip Phones anymore? Is there any escaping this teenage marketing explosion?

Two teenagers on the beach still posing for "Selfies."

I teeter and totter between blaming my children’s affinity to “Selfies” with faulty parenting and with the delightful belief that this may be the genesis of their brilliant careers as branding agents, promoters or marketing and communication experts.

Two pathetic, well-preserved teens at Cochella 2012 posing for "Selfies!"

Parents of teenagers have many battles to fare and “Selfies” while really annoying do not always make to the top of the list. But constant reminders to be safe, thoughtful and less indulgent have become part of my mantra none-the-less!

Ninja Mom

5 thoughts on ““Selfies”

  1. I also think there is a “status” element- lets the world know who you are with and where you are. Takes away any sort of discreetness (is this a word?) which of course as a mom, i automatically equate to hurt feelings- on the part of those left out- not at that same place, at that same time. I try to think of a generational equivalent in our time, and I cant. We spent an awful lot of time in front of a mirror with friends. but they do that too.

  2. On an entirely different note from my post above, a “selfie” posted to instagram last week let me know that my child had gone off campus with a new, 16 year old driver that had not been driving a year yet- hence, she was not supposed to be driving with this driver.

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