Selfie sticks banned by museums, galleries due to 'safety fears'
An increasing number of museums and galleries are banning the use of selfie sticks due to 'safety fears', it has emerged.
The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington DC are among those to have imposed a ban on the gadgets, claiming concerns over the safety of their artwork as well as visitors.
“Selfie sticks are restricted out of concern about damaging the art or people in more enclosed spaces,” Julie Jaskol, the assistant director of media relations at Getty, told Mashable.
“Like tripods and monopods, the use of selfie sticks is prohibited at the Hirshhorn to preserve the safety of the artwork and the visitors who come to enjoy it,” Kelly Carnes, a Hirshhorn Museum spokesperson, told the Washington Post.
Other major US museums that have adopted the policy include the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, the National Gallery of Art and the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum (both in Washington DC) and its Cooper Hewitt Design Museum in New York, as well as the Dallas Museum of Art and the Rhode Island School of Design Museum.
Have selfie stick, will travel...
New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art is also considering the ban.
While museums fear damage to exhibits, other venues - including Premier League football grounds - have banned the devices to discourage deliberate outbreaks of violence. Tottenham Hotspur was the first team to ban selfie sticks from their White Hart Lane stadium; Arsenal followed suit soon after.
“It was viewed that the selfie sticks can be used as an offence weapon,” Elaine Sigrist of the Arsenal Football Club told Mashable.
Anything that “could be used as a weapon or could compromise public safety” is outlawed from the Emirates Stadium, added a spokesperson for the club.
A selfie stick spotted at White Hart Lane
Last year, South Korea banned the sale of unlicensed selfie-sticks, claiming the signals emitted by the blue tooth equipped devices could pose a disruption to other equipment using the same radio frequency. Any offenders will face a $27,000 fine or up to three years in prison.
The selfie has become a global phenomenon in recent years, with everyone from celebrities and tourists to photobombing animals striking poses at their own camera lens.
A recent survey of Instagram posts that include mentions of tourist attractions and the world ‘selfie’ revealed the Eiffel Tower in Paris to be the most popular place to take a selfie.
On average, more than one million selfies are taken everyday, the research claimed, while 10,700 selfies were found to have been taken against the backdrop of the French landmark.
Others in the top five included Disney World in Florida, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, London’s Big Ben, and the Empire State Building in New York.