I freely admit that I have mixed feelings about this cultural event: I don’t take many pictures of myself except when there’s a bird perched on me. I don’t like photographs of people when they know there’s a camera on them. I do like museums though and it’s a great way to discover new ones. It’s also a great way to ensure museum visitors because you can’t take a photograph of yourself with a museum specimen unless you’re at the museum with the specimen (or very good at Photoshop but shhh – visiting a museum is quicker anyway). Since the golden years of polaroids and film rolls people have been going abroad and taken photographs of themselves at places. Who hasn’t sat through a relative’s slideshow as they talk you through their highlights: “that’s me by the Taj Mahal”; “that’s me holding a ‘Peshwari Naan'”; “That’s me in the corner”; and so on? Clearly validating that we were there fulfills some basic need in us and why shouldn’t that need be satisfied in a museum with all its fascinating specimens that a person could be “also there” with?
As long as selfies are done with respect for the irreplaceable objects you are posing with, there is no harm in it. Unfortunately that’s not always the case with some people. Remember that people will want to have their photograph taken with that awesome fossil in 100 years time and you can do your part to make sure that’s possible by being very careful.
Have a great day in the museum everyone.