March 30, 2015
Music festivals may not be able to keep the narcissists off their grounds, but they can prohibit their latest weapon of choice.
Hipster haven music festival Coachella – which opens on April 10th- recently announced that selfie sticks will be banned from the festival. It is clearly written in their list of prohibited items, right alongside hula hoops and stuffed animals (yes, really). Lollapalooza has also followed suit with their own warning for their summer festival, explicitly prohibiting “GoPro attachments like sticks, selfie sticks & monopods.”
Not long after these devices gained popularity, the concerns and complaints started rolling in. It did not take long for museums and attractions such as the Smithsonian, The Palace of Versailles, and the British National Gallery to start asking people to put their sticks away.
Despite the bans, most museums encourage the taking of selfies (sans stick). The pics posted on social media can be excellent free marketing. According to Jill Dunne, marketing and communications director for the Cincinnati Art Museum:
“People are taking more photos than ever before, and those photos — when taken at the Cincinnati Art Museum — are going to show more than a smiling face. You are going to get a glimpse at our facility or our art. And that’s all organic reach.”
I must admit that I approve of the bans, especially at places like music festivals where people might not be on their best behavior. They are intrusive and can inhibit the enjoyment of others. I get that they are innovative devices (I guess…), that allow our selfie-centered culture to take better selfies. There’s a reason they’re so popular – really, I get it. But on the other hand, there’s a time and a place for them. Preferably ,the place being far away from the madding crowds.
As someone who lives in a touristy area and likes to go for runs around national monuments and memorials, I’ve more than once been inadvertently attacked by a selfie stick. I take issue anyway with people who are completely oblivious to those around them, and now we have these oblivious people wielding selfie weapons of destruction.
For any of you who might be attending a music festival this season, and are seriously bummed that your stick won’t be allowed, here are some selfie stick alternatives that will make your time just as, if not more, enjoyable.
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