National Selfie Day first started on 21st June 2014 to encourage people to take creative selfies. To take part, just post your best selfie with the hashtag #nationalselfieday. In the meantime here are some interesting facts to think about.

  • The word was used for the first time in 2002 by Nathan Hope, an Australian guy at a 21st birthday party. He apologised that his photo wasn’t in focus, saying “Sorry, it was a selfie!”
  • In 2013 ‘selfie’ was voted word of the year by Oxford Dictionaries and that year the use of the word ‘selfie’ increased by 17,000%! By the way, if you take a selfie with other people it’s called… a groupie!
  • Did you know that taking selfies can be an obsession and is considered a medical disorder when you take and post more than 6 selfies a day?
  • We think of selfies as a modern trend but the very first selfie was taken in 1839 by American photographer Robert Cornelius. He had to sit still for 10 to 15 minutes to take the photo.

People have always loved to see images of themselves. Once, artists painted portraits to show how people looked but now, all you need is a Smartphone. Why not try The Picture of Dorian Gray, the story of a young man obsessed with his own image?


Ready for some practice?

Answer keys


Illustration by Anna+Elena Balbusso, taken from The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, Reading and Training, Step 5 (B2.2)