mid-day editorial: Youngsters, put yourself before the selfie

Death by selfie would be laughable, if it were not so tragic or widespread. Two youths from Rajasthan, who were in Pune to pursue vocational courses after their board examinations, are the latest victims of this mania. A report in this paper states that one youngster died and the other sustained critical injuries after efforts to click a selfie on railway tracks backfired.

The injured youth told cops that his companion had risked his life to click a selfie that would garner numerous likes on Facebook. While some would call it an accident, we would like to label this incident as suicide by selfie, because nothing except suicidal thoughts could have driven the youth to click a selfie on railway tracks.

It's normal for youngsters to crave approval, but for some millennials, it seems like approval is directly proportionate to the number of likes they garner on social media.

It's shocking how youngsters scour for praise on the Twitters and the Facebooks of the world. The dangerous methods they employ to bag these likes are proving to be fatal in too many cases. Walking on parapets, leaning out of moving trains, standing before oncoming traffic and running across the tracks while trains are approaching seem par for the course when one is chasing that eyeball-popping photo.

Youngsters need to be taught that there is more to life than social media likes. You cannot go to any extent to bag your moment of glory, whatever your definition of that is, on social media. Kids need to be told that they aren't invincible and their stunts hurt not only them, but their families too.

It's time celebrities, including cricketers and actors, stop mindless promotions of the selfie craze and warn their fans to stay safe at all times. The idea is to put yourself before the selfie.

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