For all you selfie-takers who get frustrated when your photo doesn’t come out right the first (or tenth) time here’s the magic formula according to Andrej Karpathy, a PhD student at Stanford University.
- Be female – men don’t make the top 100 most-liked selfies
- Cut off your forehead (probably where Ant & Dec are going wrong)
- Show your long hair
- Ensure your face occupies a third of the frame (rule of thirds)
- Oversaturate the image (and maybe save on self-tanning cream and makeup?)
- Apply a filter (Black & White selfies are popular)
- Add a border
Karpathy came to this formula by using a state of the art neural network to analyse 2 million selfies posted on the internet. The system ranked them by likes and dislikes and analysed the top 100.
Now taking selfies can be dangerous. Several people have died taking selfies and others have risked their lives wandering up a mountain with just a selfie stick or into a bear-occupied national park.
Academics at Ohio State University have concluded, based on a study of 800 male selfie-takers, that people who take a lot score high on antisocial personality measures. Not sure why they didn’t study women as I’m sure they take more selfies than men.
Anyway they also found that these men also scored high on other “dark side” traits such as narcissism (well no surprise there) but also psychopathy. Not that they are psychopaths but still…
I’m not the only one who finds this self-obsession unhealthy. As psychotherapist Diana Parkinson says in The Sunday Times “it’s unhealthy …. all that pouting and mascara“. The K family certainly have a lot to answer for.
Putting up a selfie is inviting people to comment, a way of seeking approval. Just be yourself. Leave the selfie stick at home, there’s no need to document every moment of your life on social media.