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The selfie in history: from antiquity to Instagram

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The selfie phenomenon has been a viral trend around the world for years. There is hardly anyone who does not pull out his smartphone at a suitable opportunity to take a photo of himself and then share the photos immediately on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Co. Even public people such as politicians or Hollywood stars use this medium for themselves and, with their followers, grant supposedly authentic insights into their private life with such images.

Portrait photography

Those who frequently take and post selfies are quickly seen as self-centered or narcissistic. After all, they focus heavily on themselves and seem longing for social recognition. Young people in particular are often under suspicion. The Shell study on the value orientation of young people shows that this blatant impression is deceptive, at least in this age group. She comes to the conclusion that young people of this generation care about their social environment and that this need has even increased over the past few years. According to a 2013 study of Facebook users, poor social support and frequent photo posting are mutually dependent. Accordingly, it is less about self-marketing through embellished self-portrayals and more about social recognition.

In contrast to young people, many people in public life such as politicians, actors and artists use selfies very deliberately to maintain their image, to promote their awareness and thus also to increase their “market value”.

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