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Since when was it ok to post a selfie from the scene of a siege, you Twits?


Lindt cafe.

Lindt cafe.

Lindt cafe, Sydney.

Lindt cafe, Sydney.


Lindt cafe.

It's been a bad week for basic humanity. When did it become OK for bystanders to take selfies at an unfolding hostage siege?

Yet that's what happened in Sydney on Monday. While being fascinated with an event like this is natural, rubbernecking or gathering around the scene of a crisis, incorporating it into your timeline and Twitter feed, is not.

Believe it or not, some people were even smiling in their selfies.

It's not the first time people's moral gauge has been set to 'unethical'. Search #funerals on Twitter and you'll come across dozens of people who don't understand that a funeral is not about you, your dress, nor the number of followers you can get by tweeting your pic.

Other places where utterly inappropriate selfies have been taken include the gas chamber in Auschwitz, Chernobyl, Holocaust memorials, war memorials and Anne Frank's house.


What goes through the mind of someone taking a selfie at an unfolding hostage siege? 'Must show my digital 'friends' I am here and de facto, this is sort of happening to me.'

Do you think you're somehow feeling someone else's pain or terror because you're taking pictures of yourself, from a few feet away?

And why are you posting this? For 'likes'? How can you 'like' a crisis? For emojis of thumbs up? For comments? The issue is now not the crisis at which you are taking the selfie, but the fact that you think it's ok to take a selfie at it.

I think selfies are great. They really are a fun thing to do in the right circumstances. But the trend has been linked by psychiatrists to mental health conditions related to narcissism and a person's obsession with their looks.

And when people think a #sydneysiege selfie is ok, they really #needtocopon.