In just a little over a decade, the word “selfie” has gone from being a social media darling to being bestowed the honor of being Oxford Dictionaries’ Word of the Year 2013!
The announcement was made on November 19, with Oxford Dictionaries’ Editorial Director Judy Pearsall explaining the decision, “Using the Oxford Dictionaries language research programme, which collects around 150 million words of current English in use each month, we can see a phenomenal upward trend in the use of ‘selfie’ in 2013, and this helped to cement its selection as Word of the Year.”
In numerical figures, simply put, the frequency of usage of “selfie” in the English language reportedly increased by a whopping 17,000% “since this time last year.” Note that the word isn’t included in the Oxford English Dictionary just yet (although it is “currently being considered for future inclusion”), but it was already added to OxfordDictionaries.com just last August. In this year’s shortlist, “selfie” was pitted against seven other words including the infamous “twerk”!
As it turned out, according to Oxford Dictionaries, the earliest documented usages of “selfie” was way back in September 2002 in an Australian forum and in 2004 on the photo-sharing website Flickr. Meanwhile, popular photo-sharing social media site Instagram pegs the first appearance of “selfie” in the site courtesy of user @jenlee on Jan. 27, 2011 at exactly 2:18 pm in the form of a hashtag.
“Selfie” might be a relatively new word, but taking self-portraits isn’t at all! We’ve even heard of those taken from decades ago, including those by George Harrison, Jacqueline Kennedy, and even the Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna Romanova! Just here in the Lomography community alone, selfies are among the most popular photographs taken by our awesome Lomographers. What can we say, analogue selfies are just too fun and experimental – not to mention surprising – to pass up!
See more selfies in these “super selfies” galleries: Super Selfies Taken Using the Lomo LC-A and LC-A+, Super Selfies Taken Using the Lubitel Cameras, Wacky Super Selfies Taken Using the Fisheye Cameras, Super Selfies Taken Using the Horizon Cameras, and Super Selfies Taken Using the Lomo LC-Wide.