The world’s obsession with the selfie has created a need to be seen onsocial media as if having so many hits on Twitter or Facebook or Instagram is proof of life.
Some do it with humour; others with no sense of perspective.
It is practised at football matches, in pubs, clubs and restaurants, wherever a celebrity appears, on aircraft flying to Ibiza and, if the snapper still has the stamina, on the way back again.
The pictures are taken anywhere and on any occasion.
Asylum seekers bizarrely took selfies with German chancellor Angela Merkel, perhaps in the hope it might do in lieu of a passport, and Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero got one of himself with the Chinese president and David Cameron the other day.
That’s one to show the children. The quest for the ultimate selfie knows no limits: in fact they sometimes cross the bounds of decency.
They have been taken in the aftermath of the Tunisian beach massacre and the Shoreham air crash and anywhere else that opportunity arises for infamy by association.
A crowd of girls took a selfie of themselves grinning outside a burning building in New York in which people were dying.
Happy snappers have taken smiling shots of themselves at Auschwitz, accident scenes, funerals, during suicide attempts and at disasters world wide. Surely it’s time they paused before taking a picture to consider whether the situation is appropriate and engage common sense.
We cannot halt progress but there was something more wholesome and innocent about the days when you were careful how many photographs you snapped because you only had 36 on a roll and had to take the film to Boots to be developed.
Upon collection, you shuffled through the prints outside the shop to laugh or smile at the memories they contained.
The older generation still have their holiday snaps, printed by Boots, in albums and shoe boxes. And I doubt you’ll find many pictures of a grinning snapper with someone else’s tragedy as a back drop to a crass moment of ego opportunity.