Would You Risk Your Life For A Selfie?
Do you live for likes? Are you a social media darling? Are you constantly searching for that perfect selfie? If you answered yes to all three questions then I’m sure you will not be in the minority. Modern life has turned each and every one of us into potential online superstars. A few eye catching pics and before you know it your a media sensation. However, did you know that over 250 deaths (and counting) have been attributed to ‘extreme selfies’ – the pursuit by individuals to photograph themselves in extreme locations such as mountain tops and bridges.
This dangerous pastime has exploded over the last decade with the rise of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, instagram etc. Travel bloggers are making lucrative careers photographing themselves in far flung destinations. With that being said, do certain locations need to be stricter with their visiting regulations or do we need to just have a collective word with ourselves and reign in our selfie obsession?
Between 2011 and 2017 a global study found that 259 deaths occurred as the direct result of a selfie. They go on further to say that there could be many more incidents in developing nations that have not been reported and so this could just be the tip of the iceberg. Unsurprisingly it mainly affects the young, with the lion share of victims being under the age of 30 and male.
Selfie deaths have become so prominent in recent years that many exotic tourist destinations have been forced to declare ‘No Selfie Zones’ to save people from getting injured or worse. The top three countries where selfie deaths have occurred are India, Russia and USA. Experts have noted that this is most likely because each of them have huge populations with wild terrains and so there’s a higher chance of people dying as a result of an extreme selfie.
- The majority of selfie deaths have occurred around water. Drowning has been the official cause of death in these instances. Water is extremely unpredictable and deadly. Make sure you have a firm grip of the ground you are standing on.
- The very notion of a selfie means that all your attention is on your phone/device and not on your surroundings. Look around you. Always be alert, especially around busy roads. Avoid railway tracks at all cost.
- Don’t be selfish. If you fall in water or down a hill/mountain then your friend’s will naturally try and help you. This could lead to further disaster. Don’t attempt to take a dangerous selfie on your own. Ask one of your friends to take a picture of you instead.
- People have been mauled by wild animals in the pursuit of that perfect nature selfie. If you are within 100 yards of a wild animal you are too close. Any uncertain movements could lead to you being mauled, maimed and even eaten!
- You’ve seen the breathtakingly dangerous selfies of wide eyed millennials perched on top of huge man-made structures and mountains. The scary thing is many of them aren’t photoshopped! Multiple deaths have occurred because people have slipped trying to take the perfect selfie hundreds of metres off the ground.