Wanna a better selfie? Get a selfie stick
Wanna a better selfie? Get a selfie stick Tourists use a selfie stick on the Trocadero Square, with the Eiffel Tower in background, in Paris (AP photos)
Wanna a better selfie? Get a selfie stick
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Selfies at tourist attractions are nothing new. But until recently, if you wanted a perfectly composed picture of yourself with a landmark in the background, you might have asked a passer-by to take the photo.

Now, though, relatively new gadgets called selfie sticks make it easy to take your own wide-angled self-portraits or group shots. Fans say the expandable rods, which allow users to hold their cellphones a few feet away, are the ultimate convenience. No more bothering passers-by to take pictures. No more fretting about strangers taking lousy shots or running off with a pricey iPhone.

But some travelers bemoan the loss of that small interaction that came with politely asking a local to help preserve a memory. And critics express outright hatred of selfie sticks. They see them as obnoxious symbols of self-absorption. They even have a derisive name for them: narcissi (nar-sissy) stick.

Sarah Kinling of Baltimore said she was approached "17 times" by vendors selling selfie sticks at the Colosseum in Rome.

"They're the new fanny pack. The quickest way to spot a tourist," she said. "The more I saw them in use, the more I saw how much focus people were putting on selfies. And not turning around to see what they were there to see."

When Kinling wanted a photo of herself with her sister and sister-in-law, she asked strangers to take the shot.

"Even when the other person didn't speak English, you hold your camera up and make the motion and they understand," she said.

But some travelers say it's better to stage your own vacation photos. Andrea Garcia asked a passer-by to take her photo in Egypt and later realized he'd zoomed in on her face, cutting out the pyramids behind her.

"I couldn't really be mad at him. He wasn't my photographer, I didn't pay him," she said.

The experience made her appreciate the selfie sticks. She sees tourists using them at 1 World Trade near her office in New York's Lower Manhattan. "Take control of your image!" she says.

Selfie sticks are just starting to show up at attractions in the U.S. But they're found in many destinations overseas, from Dubai's skyscraper, the Burj Khalifa, to the Eiffel Tower in Paris. A soccer stadium in London, White Hart Lane, has even banned them because they obstruct other fans' views.

The Four Seasons Hotel in Houston just started making them available to guests, "similar to the way many hotels provide umbrellas," said hotel spokeswoman Laura Pettitt.

The sticks range in price from $5 to $50. Simpler models merely grip the phone. So users must trigger the shot with a self-timer on the camera. More sophisticated versions use Bluetooth technology. Or they connect the phone to the stick with a cord. A button on the grip triggers the shot.

Critical thinking challenge: Selfie sticks are not available everywhere yet. Why is it easier to buy a selfie stick at a landmark?

Source URL: https://www.tweentribune.com/article/tween56/wanna-better-selfie-get-selfie-stick/

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COMMENTS (274)
  • EmilyK-2
    2/02/2015 - 08:22 p.m.

    This article is about the new "thing". Selfie sticks are becoming more and more popular in tourist attractions all over the world. A lot of people love them because you are able to take advantage of the photo opp, and see what you look like and what the photo is of. Others hate selfie sticks because a lot of people are more into the selfie than what they are actually supposed to be sight seeing and looking at. I don't really have an opinion on selfie sticks because I am never in a situation where they would be really bothering me or really beneficial to me.

  • APangaro-1
    2/02/2015 - 08:23 p.m.

    A new and improved way of taking a selfie is with a selfie stick. These sticks can range anywhere from $5-$50. People say that the expandable rod is an ultimate convenience because it expands a couple feet allowing you to take a selfie, and maybe part of the background. There will be no more worrying about asking someone to take a picture that might run off with your pricey iPhone. Selfie sticks are popular among tourists because they would like to capture the place they are in. Personally, I would like to have a selfie stick because I enjoy capturing special moments with friends and family.

  • Brandon1231-YYCA
    2/02/2015 - 08:29 p.m.

    I think that it might be bad to have people use a selfie with a stick. I think that it would be better if they were able to use their hand because they would have to attach it to the stick and take more work. I hope that these people don't drop their stick while doing this because then their phone would surely break. I think that they should do somehting about this thing because they can do something about their phone. I hope that they can knwo that they might drop it and the will start to cry.

    • Eric0221-YYCA
      7/29/2015 - 01:32 p.m.

      REBUTTAL:
      Brandon, I disagree that selfie sticks are bad because selfie sticks can be useful to other people, so if a person took a selfie of itself on the phone without a selfie stick, then the person who just got a selfie photo doesn't know what he had took a photo to in front of it. Another thing that I disagree is that while people who are taking selfie photos with a selfie stick, they won't be able to drop the selfie stick because the selfie stick could hold the phone while somebody else is taking a photo in front of something that is famous.

  • LilyE-4
    2/02/2015 - 09:22 p.m.

    Sefie sticks seem to become a growing trend nowadays.These sticks are expandable rods that allow the user to take their selfies a few feet away. However, there is a mixed opinion for these gadgets. Some people, like Andrea Garcia, love the new invention, and think it is money well spent on. However, others like Sarah Kinling dislike them because they take away the interaction with other humans when asking them to take a picture. I like these selfie sticks, because I think it decreases the chance of someone taking your phone when you ask them for a selfie. However, I dislike the contraption, because, like Kinling said, it takes away the chance for interaction.

  • AllisonG-Jac
    2/02/2015 - 09:46 p.m.

    I think this is a very nice idea so u don't have to hold your phone in uncomfortable positions and the selfie stick looks amazing i wish i had one.

  • RylandH-3
    2/02/2015 - 11:42 p.m.

    The selfie stick is a growing item on the market for tourists. Many are debating whether that is a good or bad thing. The argument for the reason why they are a good thing is so that a tourist won't have to make that awkward effort to try and get a stranger who most likely won't speak the same language. Plus, you can avoid the fear of a person running off with your expensive phone or camera. But the argument for why the selfie stick is a bad thing is just as strong. The intial thought of asking a stranger is nerve racking but the interaction between strangers is what strengthens societies and getting ride of that interactions is doing the exact opposite. I thought this article was very interesting. It was surprising to me on what major effects such a simple product was having on a society. I personally am a fan of asking a stranger to take the picture because it is easier then truing to take it with a selfie stick.

  • JackD-3
    2/03/2015 - 12:57 a.m.

    This article was about a new gadget used to take selfies. It is called the selfie stick. This selfie stick is literally a stick that grips the phone and is used so you can easily take a picture of yourself. Many people hate this new gadget, claiming that it is like the new fanny pack. This is meant to say that it makes it really easy to spot a tourist in a crowd. Other people think that it is a useful gadget that people can use in order to take better pictures. Nevertheless, it has been banned from certain places.

    I think that this gadget can be annoying but I would love to have one so I could take better pictures of myself. In fact, I have even seen this being used before by someone near the Hermosa pier.

  • ErinF-Jac
    2/03/2015 - 05:36 a.m.

    This is very interesting to me because I have never heard of a selfie stick otherwise known as a narcissi stick.It Looks So Weird and akward to hold the stick and take a selfie doesn't it?

  • citlallis6503
    2/03/2015 - 10:38 a.m.

    People are doing too much just to take a selfie. Either the picture's ugly or t's pretty. That's why you take a lot of them. -_- Tao is probably going to get one of these -_-

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