Auschwitz Selfie

Auschwitz Selfie

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About

Auschwitz Selfie refers to a selfie taken by teenager Breanna Mitchell as she stood in front of Auschwitz concentration camp. After Mitchell posted the selfie to Twitter she faced a backlash from people who felt taking a picture in front of the camp, especially featuring a smile, was insensitive and offensive.

Background

On July 20th, 2014, Breanna Mitchell tweeted[1] a smiling selfie of herself with a caption which explained she was standing in front of Auschwitz, a concentration camp in Poland.



In less than 48 hours the tweet gained over 4,000 retweets and over 3,000 favorites. Many of the retweets were critical of the picture, saying it was an inappropriate place to take one. Mitchell, however, retweeted those defending the tweet.



However later that day Mitchell sent out a tweet which expressed a desire for the tweet to be left alone. As of July 22nd, Mitchell’s twitter feed has been made private.



Notable Developments

Media Coverage

Also on July 20th, Business Insider[2] published an article titled “This Teenager Is Getting Harassed After Her Smiling Selfie At Auschwitz Goes Viral.” The same day the tweet was also covered by Buzzfeed[4] and Newsday.[5] The following day the tweet was covered by the New York Post[3] and The Mirror.[6]

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Top Comments

HumdrumSuperior
HumdrumSuperior

Taking a picture and saying “I’m in a place where a lot of people died years ago.” is fine. Doing it as a selfie while smiling and putting a “cute” emoticon at the end of it is what sets it over the edge of insensitivity.

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