Why ‘Selfie’ = Photo and No One Cares About Your Grammar

Look, it’s just easier.

It doesn’t matter anymore if you’re the one holding the camera. No one cares.

The word selfie has essentially come to mean ‘photograph with people in it’. If it’s a picture that’s main focus is on a face (or faces) or one person or a few people, it’s going to get called a selfie – and no one wants to hear your comment about it not technically being a selfie because the person didn’t take it themselves.

We know they didn’t.

You know what we do know, though? Allowing a word like selfie to enter our everyday vocabulary means that focusing on its exact definition is of little consequence. Hear us out for a second; this was a word that was made up about a decade ago (it can be traced back to 2002 but its popularity really seemed to come about sometime around 2015) and now some people are clinging to it like its definition isn’t as fluid as the social media generation that defined it in the first place. Words change all the time, albeit it used to happen more slowly than it does these days.

But don’t forget: MySpace was a synonym for cool less than 10 years ago.

Just as the landscape for change in our millennial culture has never been more abundant, so too are the words we use to define it. The word awful used to mean “inspiring awe,” we all know that “hook-up” is very different than it used to be, and same goes for the definition for are ‘gay’, ‘tool’, and many, many others.

And so is selfie.

It no longer means what you want it to mean. Sorry, but it’s true.

So please stop being that person who feels the need to point out that “they didn’t take the photo, it’s not a selfie” and just move on to the next post that also fails to meet its own definition. This is the world we live in now, and we’re the ones who made it this way.