We are all too familiar with selfies.
So much so that last year, Oxford Dictionaries named ‘Selfie’ 2013 word of the year.
Here’s the official definition of Selfie by Oxford:
(n.) a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.
Research suggested its frequency in the English language had increased by 17,000% in the last year, Oxford University added.
Other than Oxford, earlier in March this year, Apple also devoted a new section of its App Store exclusively to selfie photo apps. The new “Sharing Selfies” section caters to the broad needs of people who feel the urge to take photos of themselves and share them with others.
Instagram and Twitter Followers as Social Currency
Other than catering to people who need to take photos of themselves, selfies have a new role too in the connected society these days: serving as autographs.
According to The Wall Street Journal’s newest columnist, Taylor Swift (yes, that Taylor Swift), autographs are so over.
“I haven’t been asked for an autograph since the invention of the iPhone with a front-facing camera. The only memento “kids these days” want is a selfie. It’s part of the new currency, which seems to be “how many followers you have on Instagram”,” wrote Taylor.
This new social “currency” seems to be the norm now, and Taylor pointed out that she was told by an actress friend of hers that casting directors now choose actresses who have more social followers.
“I see this becoming a trend in the music industry. For me, this dates back to 2005 when I walked into my first record-label meetings, explaining to them that I had been communicating directly with my fans on this new site called Myspace. In the future, artists will get record deals because they have fans—not the other way around.”
So for all your generation Y, if you are looking to build up your social “currency”, Twitter and Instagram would be good places to start.