If there is one thing you cannot miss in Hyderabad lately -it is our craze for selfies! From a single low angle portrait to a group of scattered human objects, the casual approach of a self-photograph is the height of DIY ( do it yourself) . This is beyond narcissism !! It is now the in thing in case you want to belong! The word selfie was officially coined by the Oxford dictionary in the year 2013 which means ‘ a portrait of oneself’ . But in reality the concept was discovered back in 1839 by Robert Cornelius. Now little did Robert imagine that this would become the obsession of Hyderabad much later. I tried to find out the psychology behind clicking selfies. Firstly it is considered cool. Secondly, it becomes personal, especially when more than one person becomes part of it. Talking of which, it is even more hot and happening when one gets a selfie with a celebrity. “Apart from the physical proximity one gets with the celebrity to click it, there is also the suggestive closeness which is uber cool! I always click selfies with all my studio guests,” says Shekhar, one of the most popular RJs in the city. But what is obvious and accepted is that most selfies make the person look anything from funny to hideous. Many selfie portraits look like the FBI’s wanted list or psychotic. All you need to do is go on to Facebook and check out selfies of your friends.
Now how do we know that this is catching up big time in our city? Have you ever stopped at traffic signals where people sell you the most wanted goods on roads? They can be tissue boxes or strawberries or car shades. Now we see people selling ‘ selfie sticks ‘ at many intersections. I was intrigued by the entire market-tapping psychology of these vendors. I mean, who would imagine that people would actually buy these in some weak moment when they are stuck between cars?
Nevertheless, it is working. It has become part of corporates, colleges and tinsel town. Even actors have stopped posing for photographs beyond pouting their lips for selfie. Buddies in the industry click pics in natural attire to look like regular people now. The approachable aura a selfie offers is undebatable!! So we are a selfie-crazy city now. Pretty cool, ain’t it?
(The writer is a popular TV show host, radio jockey, professional singer… and most importantly, a hardcore Hyderabadi)