Museums tell visitors to leave their selfie sticks behind

Brittany A. Roston - Feb 11, 2015, 6:54pm CST
Museums tell visitors to leave their selfie sticks behind

Selfie sticks are easy to mock and are an excellent way to embarrass your friends. To be fair, they’re also a decent way to get a snapshot of yourself and your significant other in front of something without asking a stranger to handle your phone. That use is proving to be a problem in some museums, however, and now the banhammers are coming: a couple museums in New York have banned the use of selfie sticks on their premises, and they’re not the only ones. The reason is due to safety.

Camera extension poles are nothing knew, but so-called selfie sticks have been criticized as another example of the allegedly growing narcissism of the present generation. Regardless, they’re becoming more common place, particularly among tourists looking to record memories at more flattering angles.

Museums have noticed an uptick in their usage near exhibits, and are worried about their usage. Some have reported watching visitors jut their selfie sticks into exposed exhibits closely enough that a slight mishap could cause damage to a statue or painting. One man reported to CBS New York that he watched a man put his selfie stick dangerously close to a dinosaur on exhibit — close enough that he could have bumped it and sent the entire structure tumbling down.

Thus far the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum and the Museum of Modern Art in New York have banned selfie sticks, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art is also contemplating a similar ban. Other museums across the US have also banned their use.


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