Selfie Stick Wars

News Headline:  The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Cleveland Museum of Art, National Gallery and Hirshhorn Museum in DC prohibit selfie sticks. The Louvre in Paris and Tate and National Gallery in London are ok with them.

One imagines world Masterpieces of portraiture, from Rembrandt to Warhol, gazing out in wonderment from their wall-hung perches at museum galleries crowded with modern visitors holding long sticks with cell phone cameras taking selfies. The Old World Masterpieces are mostly amused at the novelty of the New World scene, especially when the visitors include the Masterpieces themselves in the selfies, amounting to a popularity contest of sorts. The Rembrandt looks over at the Warhol for signs of envy that the Rembrandt seems to be attracting more selfies. Then one day, the selfie sticks are gone, but the selfies continue apace, sans stick, or with new experimental sticks designed to get around the new rule book prohibiting selfie sticks as risky to Masterpieces and the viewing experiences of others.  The Old World portraits listen to whispered debates in the galleries.  One selfie stick advocate, a studio art major with dried oil paint from yesterday’s classes on her hands, is heard to say: “Museums need selfies. It’s a new way to enjoy museums. Museums should be encouraging selfies.” An anti-selfie stick advocate, is heard to say: “So what about the rights of others? Why should I have to look at art through a bunch of selfie sticks? And what about property rights? What if you poked that Rembrandt with a selfie stick?” The Rembrandt noted that concern, but, being a Rembrandt, was bold and world-weary enough not to be afraid of a few cell phone cameras on sticks. Plus, I’m wearing a suit of convincingly realistic armor, the Rembrandt reasoned.

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