Wednesday, 26 February 2014

A study of selfies in São Paulo

Selfies from São Paulo
Using a mix of theoretic, artistic and quantitative methods, a group of researchers this week released their findings on the internet phenomenon of selfies (self-portraits). Studying 3200 selfies across 5 major cities the research from the site  gives us some interesting conclusions about selfies in São Paulo.

To locate selfies, 120,000 photos were randomly selected (20,000-30,000 photos per city) from a total of 656,000 images collected on Instagram. Depending on the city, 3-5% of all images analysed were identified as selfies giving us a sense of the prevalence of the so-called masturbation of self image

In keeping with global trends 65% of selfies are in São Paulo are taken by women.

Women also tend to take more extreme poses in selfies. Overall the average amount of head tilt is 50% higher than for men: (12.3° vs. 8.2°), São Paulo being the most extreme - here, the average head tilt for females is 16.9°!!

Selfies are also far more common among the young. The average age for São Paulo selfie takers was found to be 22 for women and 25 for men.

Selfies often mirror historical poses
The research also confirms other studies which show that selfies in general show the left cheek of the selfie-taker ore often than the right. Interestingly this is the same trend that can be seen in portraits by professional painters from many different historical periods and styles, which may mean left cheek bias is due to the cognitive neuroscience theory of asymmetries in brain lateralization 

And if you want an even deeper analysis check out the rest of the demographics on São Paulo selfies:


Unknown said...

Muito interessante Pierre! A ultima vez que estive em SP, pude perceber claramente como o "selfie" se tornou um fenômeno!
Adorei essa foto da Monalisa :)

Unknown said...

Thanks Lidi! Is that a selfie on your profile pic? ;)

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