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Selfie Stick Ban in Museums Denied

Selfie Stick Ban in Museums DeniedSelfie Stick Ban in Museums Denied

The news on the prohibition of using selfie sticks for taking photographs in museums across the country has been denied by the director of Museums and Historical Moveable Properties Office at Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization.

Speaking to ISNA, Mohammad Reza Kargar added that no directive on selfie stick ban has been issued yet and tourists and museum-goers are free to take selfie photos, as long as they observe safety measures concerning the displayed objects and other visitors.

Emphasizing the advantages of taking selfies, he said such photos, which will probably be shared in the social media, help introduce the country's heritage sites and history to the world, thus contributing to the domestic tourism industry.  

Earlier this week, Jebre'il Nokandeh, director of National Museum of Iran, had argued that it is one thing to take a picture at arm’s length, but using a stick three times an arm’s length in a museum filled with valuable artifacts is a hazard.

“Not only that, you may encroach on someone else’s personal space,” he was quoted as saying by IRNA.

Kargar nullified the claims and emphasized that there is no prohibition until it is approved by the heritage deputy of ICHHTO.

Selfies are not merely tolerated, but also encouraged. Art museums, travel agencies and hospitality centers long ago concluded that selfies help visitors give free publicity to attractions.

However, a large number of leading museums and art galleries worldwide have also considered banning selfie sticks.

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington and the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston banned the sticks long ago.

Earlier this month, a woman at a pop-gallery in Los Angeles’ 14th Factory lost her balance while trying to snap a picture with a selfie stick, crashing into a pedestal that started a domino effect and knocked down a row of pedestals.

The selfie stick originated with a Canadian inventor named Wayne Fromm who took out a patent in 2005. With the arrival of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, the stick spread like wildfire throughout the world.

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