Selfie Deaths: Selfies Are Deadlier Than Sharks

Tara Dodrill - Author

Sep. 23 2015, Updated 8:44 a.m. ET

Selfies are deadlier than sharks, according to a new campaign launched to increase awareness about the oddly popular habit of snapping yourself doing just about anything and posting it on social media. Selfie deaths are reportedly on the rise. The latest fatal selfie occurred after a 66-year-old Japanese tourist fell down the stairs at the Taj Mahal while attempting to take a photo, the Huffington Post reports.

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So far in 2015, there has been a total of 12 selfie deaths. During the same time frame, shark attacks killed eight people. Selfies were originally a fad among teens and college students. In recent years, however, even full-grown adults have posted photos of themselves with a plate of food, sitting in hospital beds before surgery, and hugging their dogs. These images are then uploaded to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Governments in some countries have now officially recognized that selfie deaths are a valid concern and are taking steps to curtail such tragedies, NewsMax notes. Russian officials have created a campaign to alert citizens about the dangers of snapping selfies in unsafe environments.

An illustrated pamphlet was created to warn selfie fans about the serious consequences that can occur when taking photos of themselves in potentially dangerous surroundings. The booklet comes complete with color photos of folks taking selfies while standing on a railroad track in front of an oncoming train, while standing near wild animals, and after climbing halfway up an electricity pole. Russian law enforcement officers are planning to host “selfie-safety lessons” at schools.

Multiple Yellowstone National Park visitors were injured by buffalo while standing too close to the majestic wild beasts and attempting to take selfies, earlier this summer.

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“Our booklet reminds you of how to take a safe selfie, so it is not the last one you will ever take,” said Russian official Yelena Alekseyeva said.

If a reporter would have told the world that taking photos of yourself in front of a mirror and sharing the image would become a common trend for everyone from pimple-faced teens to high-level politicians 20 years ago, readers would have thought the report was a hoax. If that very same reporter would have also noted that selfies would be deadlier than shark attacks by 2015, disbelief and head-shaking surely would have occurred. Today, the fact that people who have never snapped a selfie still exist is considered rare and looked upon with complete and total surprise.

“Selfie obsession” is a growing concern by some governments as deadly selfies statistics mount. Some feel that a lack of self-esteem and overwhelming need for attention motivates some teens and adults to constantly snap selfies and post them to Facebook and other social media platforms.

What do you think about selfies being deadlier than shark attacks? Why do you think adults take selfies and post them to social media?

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