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In Defense of Selfies, Even Obama's

COLUMBUS (Chris Vanocur/Kate Liebers) -- "Selfie-gate" is blowing up on blogs and social media.

The term refers to a now notorious self-portrait United States President Barack Obama took with other world leaders at Nelson Mandela's memorial.

Considering the somber setting, this selfie was widely criticized. Yet the photographer who captured that moment said Obama is getting more flack than he deserves.

"For me, the behaviour of these leaders in snapping a selfie seems perfectly natural," AFP photographer Roberto Schmidt wrote in an AFP Behind the News piece. "I see nothing to complain about, and probably would have done the same in their place."

The incident brings to light the debate surrounding the etiquette of taking pictures of one's own self.

The Internet has no dearth of opinions. Bloggers say selfies should not be captured in front of the boss's office, the bathroom, jail, or church. Others scorn self-portraits captured while eating or while drunk.

More socially acceptable opportunities for selfies may include momentous or historical events. 

And, as Schmidt suggested, one should not have to make an exception for memorial services.

Read Schmidt's editorial here: http://blogs.afp.com/correspondent/?post/Selfie
 
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