At SelfieYo, we think a lot about the exciting trends around selfies and photo-taking with mobile phones. One part of the selfie trend we have noticed is how selfie checkin is becoming the new mobile social checkin. Part of the reason we’re building SelfieYo selfie photo chat app is to explore new ways of building mobile tools to help people share and communicate around selfies. Why? Because people like taking selfies. It’s fun.
Selfie’ing is a giant behavior that is growing and there are lots of things we can do to help improve the experience for selfie lovers around the world.
All that said, there seems to be some selfie backlash lately – primarily from stodgy, crotchety psychoanalyst types writing articles about how bad selfies are and how bad the people taking them are. Au contraire, mon frère!
Selfie condemnation is not just ill advised, it’s ridiculous and illustrates how broad social change advances from younger generations can be misunderstood by so-called mainstream media pundits. Generally speaking, it seems that a lot of less tech savvy, non-social media friendly types don’t quite understand that selfies and emoji are just how we like to communicate. Sometimes way too much is read into a simple little selfie that is just intended to mean “Hey! Look friends, I’m saying hello!” – there’s no need to overreact to the fun that Generation Z and many Millennials have with selfies.
Taking a selfie and sharing on social media or sharing more privately with select friends is a way to express emotion, send messages of empathy at times or checkin with the world to be a part of the social discussion. Therein lies the challenge that traditional social media has; the “discussion” is becoming more visual and animated than ever. Why say something with 140 characters when you can say with a selfie and an emoji?
There’s a whole language of emoji and selfies that mainstream marketers and strict social mediagonians don’t get. Selfies are the new social, visual checkin with the ability to convey important messages much faster than past forms of written checkin and with greater degree of human-to-human emotional depth. We expect to see a lot more powerful messaging around selfies throughout 2015 and beyond.