You may have heard of “Selfies” the term used by social media users for taking a photo of ones self and posting it on the internet via Twitter, Facebook, Intagram, etc. Barack Obama, David Cameron, Ellen DeGeneres and many more have all been making headlines with their own versions of the Selfie of late.
However over the last 48 hours this somewhat innocuous and some may say vain past time has hit the headlines for more positive reasons – Cancer Research.
A viral campaign entitled the “No Make Up Selfie” has taken off in the UK raising over $2 million in just 24 hours – Cancer Research UK has reported that it received almost a million unexpected donations in one day, most of which came in via SMS. The campaign, which began on social media on Tuesday afternoon, asks women to post photos of themselves online without make-up, with the hashtag #nomakeupselfie. If you are a facebook user with friends in the UK you can not have failed to notice this phenomenon over the last couple of days.
The #nomakeupselfie trend has been highly criticised for having little to do with breast cancer, and for not raising money for charity (some also worry that it has led to online bullying), but Cancer Research UK’s latest comments suggest they are supportive, Carolan Davidge, director of communications at Cancer Research UK said: “The #nomakeupselfie Twitter trend isn’t something Cancer Research UK started but it’s great to see so many people getting involved to help raise awareness of cancer amongst their friends and family. If people would like to choose to support our work to beat cancer sooner, they can visit cruk.org.”
Cancer Research UK also saw a rise in people donating at their Cancer Research UK shops, and a huge peak in visits to its website.
The trend seems to have begun with author Laura Lippman who posted a picture of her bare face in support of actress Kim Novak who was criticised for her looks, but has since become associated with charity Cancer Research after people began adding the hashtag #breastcancerawareness to the selfies.
After noticing the trend, the charity sent out a tweet saying: “We’re loving your #cancerawareness #nomakeupselfie pics! The campaign isn’t ours but every $ helps #beatcancersooner.”
The selfie campaign has also sparked a Facebook page No Make Up Selfie For Cancer Awareness which had more than 245,000 ‘likes’ at the time of writing.
Not wanting to be left out British men have responded and are now posting selfies with full faces of make-up to raise money for prostate cancer charities – see article.