The Strange Bubble Economics of Selfies

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If you haven’t joined the ranks of those addicted to “Selfies” , you need to know the details of this social phenomenon. Here’s a great article from our friends at Mashable about what the Oxford Dictionary named the word of year.

A couple of months ago my 13-year-old son came to me with a true story. One of his acquaintances had given him control of an Instagram profile with roughly 3,500 followers as a gift.

A few days later, my son and his friends met some famous rappers. They took a few selfies with them and posted the images on the Instagram profile. Almost immediately the number of followers exploded from 3,500 to about 9,000. Then my son’s friend offered to buy the profile from him. There is apparently so much social value, acclaim and recognition associated with the account that it is now worth actual money.

Social capital is being traded for hard capital online now. Social media profiles function as online campaigns for selling an image or perception of yourself. It’s even stranger than bubble economics because at least when stocks are at the center of hype, they are still worth something tangible to begin with.

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Below are some famous celebrity selfies including Justin Bieber, Tom Hanks, Steve Martin & Miley Cyrus

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