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Selfie Sticks BANNED - Why Do People Hate Them?

May 25, 2015 at 12:00 PM

Tags: Phone Smartphone Photo Image Camera Photography Selfie Pic Society Banned Stick POPSCOPE Tripod venue
Category: Tech News

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9314 pop kate selfie.jpg

If you've been a long time follower of DMR, you may remember that a bit under a year ago, we took a stance in the Selfie Stick War. We are pro-Selfie Stick. That's right. We defended the use of these devices, and believe in their merits.

The article in question was called; "POPSCOPE Is Our Selfie Savior"

We still encourage you to check it out if you aren't already familiar with our article on the POPSCOPE:


(Their Kickstarter Campaign has ended, and the Product can be purchased from their website.)

So, why are we talking about Selfie Sticks again, almost a year later? Well, a few reasons. To start with, Selfie Sticks are being banned, in a LOT of places, in multiple countries.

Here is a brief list of just some of the places they are currently banned. If you are caught with a selfie stick you will be removed, and possibly banned yourself;

(You can click each place for sources)

The National Gallery, London
The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Pointe-à-Callière Archaeology Museum
The Colosseum in Rome
The Palace of Versailles, Paris
19 Smithsonian museums and galleries
The Museum of Modern Art, New York
The Cooper Hewitt Museum, New York
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
The Guggenheim Museum, New York
The Frick Museum, New York
The Brooklyn Museum
The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
The Art Institute of Chicago
The Detroit Institute of the Arts
The Albertina museum in Vienna, Austria
Brazilian soccer stadiums
Soccer stadiums for Arsenal and Tottenham in England
The Seattle Art Museum
The Getty Center, Los Angeles
The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Wembley Stadium, London
The Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh
The Frick Pittsburgh
Music venues O2 Academy Brixton and O2 Arena, England
Cleveland Museum of Art
The Perot Museum of Nature and Science, Dallas
The Dallas Museum of Art
Blanton Museum of Art, Austin, Texas
The MTS Centre, a sports arena in Winnipeg
The National Gallery of Victoria, Australia 
The National Gallery of Australia in Canberra 
The National Portrait Gallery, Australia
The Canadian Museum for Human Rights
The Sugarmill nightclub, England
The 2015 Ultra Music Festival, Miami, Florida
The Soundwave Music Festival, Australia
The Qantas Credit Union Arena, Sydney
Etihad Stadium in Melbourne
Domain Stadium in Western Australia
Perth Arena 
Suncorp stadium in Brisbane
The Hermitage in Amsterdam
The National Gallery, London
Lollapalooza Music Festival
Coachella Music Festival

Keep in mind that these are only places whose ban on Selfie Sticks made the press. If you're going to bring a Selfie Stick to any venue, it would be wise to check that it is not already disallowed there.

Why are they being banned? The reason depends on the venue, but here are a few examples of the reasons provided by certain venues;

- Can be extended and used as a weapon (Can't everything?)

- Obstructs view of those behind the user of a Selfie Stick (Fair, but a stretch)

- Could be accidentally swung and damage property of venue (So could a purse)

- Health and Safety Reasons ("We don't like selfie sticks"?)

Whether these reasons are fair or legitimate is a matter of opinion, and regardless, it is well within the rights of a venue to ban items they feel are undesirable or a hazard.

There has also been some bad press recently which wrongly blames selfie sticks as the cause of the issues. 

For example, 18 year old Romanian teenager 'Anna Ursu' dies trying to take 'Ultimate Selfie' using a Selfie Stick.


She climbed on top of a train, and accidentally touched a live wire, while attempting to take the photo. Her body was filled with 27,000 volts of electricity. She subsequently burst into flames, was propelled off the train, and died.

This is an unfortunate story, but sadly, the blame has been placed by many publications and people alike, on the Selfie Stick, rather than the irresponsible act of climbing on top of an operational train which is electrically active, to take a selfie. The Selfie Stick didn't whisper in her ear and compel her to do it.


In conclusion, Selfie Sticks are a valuable bit of photography gear that anyone should consider using. Why? These days, Mobile Phone Cameras are often just as good, if not better, than Digital Cameras of comparable price. As well, your Smartphone is quite often "the camera you have with you", and so it's more likely to be the one you use on a regular basis. 

There are problems with Smartphone photography though. It can be hard to get a stable shot, without a proper camera grip it can be hard to get the right angle or reduce motion blur, and you're out of luck if the phone needs to be farther away from you than arm's reach when you take a photo.

Selfie Sticks work as a reach extender. Additionally, many (like POPSCOPE) also function as a Tripod (pictured below), which is great for group photos, stop motion, panoramas, filming, and so forth.

POP B2.jpg

Many people 'hate' Selfie Sticks with a burning passion. This is often due to the misconception that Selfie Sticks are for, and used solely by, self-absorbed conceited people. This is not the case. They have many uses, and are used by all types of people, even serious photographers.


So, what do you think? Do you hate Selfie Sticks? Do you use one? Feel free to comment below, or vote in the Poll!

What do you think of Selfie Sticks?
They're Awesome!
They're Fine.
I Don't Care.
They're Kinda Dumb

Op-Ed: Listen to my (Nicholas / Sev) personal views on the Selfie Stick Issue. Just click Play on the Audio Player window below. Warning - NSFW

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