The History Of The Selfie

Published 2022-11-17
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White House tour social media ban:…


Chauvet cave:

“Exploring the Selfie”:…………

Chimp looking in water image:…

Smithsonian Magazine article on Cornelius:…

Smithsonian archive page for Fitz’s selfie:

Hippolyte Bayard:

“Is Cereal Soup?” Vsauce video:

MV Lobethal:

Mirror selfie from Ginnigan on reddit:

Byron extended arm selfie:…

Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna Romanova:……

Perkins teenage self-portrait:…

early selfie sticks:

Byron “usie”:…

Jhoane Baterna-Pateña:

Historical images re-imagined as selfies:…

Vivian Maier:

instant cameras:…

Michael Collins’ reverse-selfie:…

First selfie-stick patent:

Lester Wisbrod:…


First camera phone picture:…

“Here I Am Taking My Own Picture” (nytimes) 2006:…

Oldest recorded use of “seflie”:……
(archive of forum post):…

Aussie slang:………

“selfie” as word of the year:


“The Return of the Selfie” (New Yorker):…

Kardashian belfie pic:…

Belfie stick:


additional images:

All Comments (21)
  • Gシ
    Micheal is the only person who can start a video with an illegal pooping selfie and everyone just immediately accepts it
  • Kenneth Wong
    Honestly the fact that this video is almost indistinguishable from his older videos in style and editing is amazing.
  • Is no one going to question how Micheal just invents the word "Ussy" out of thin air? Love this man
  • Is anyone else absolutely blown away by the 'reverse selfie'? It just seems so insane to me.
  • o m
    I like how Bek unashamedly gave himself a big beer belly. He keeps it real.
  • ElectroBOOM
    Can you call them selfies if the selfie was created before the word "selfie" was invented?
  • nauberry
    It's the annual Vsauce treat!
  • Demdere
    Michael, I cannot thank you enough for continuing to produce these videos. My father and I loved to watch them in the earlier days of your channel, and it's a lovely memory every time I enjoy a new video of yours! The "A-ha!" moments in your videos give a physical aspect to those memories.
  • Will Burden
    The pictures taken by the Tsar's daughter are so fascinating. I've never seen anyone from that time depicted in such a human way that's similar to how we take pictures of ourselves now, as opposed to a photo of them sat down blank faced where they seem so far from human that they could be robots. It genuinely makes it so much more real when Michael then goes on to mention how her and the rest of the family were killed by Bolsheviks shortly after.
  • Natrat Critter
    Micheal always asks important questions like how a felfie should be a selfie but of the face. I like to think that its called a selfie because the self is a combination of all the parts that we consider to be ourselves. if one of those parts is more promniant in the selfie then it can be concluded that the slefie has a center of attention and thus things like the belfie and felfie can and technically should exist.
  • I love how the young man took a photo of himself outside his shop and even managed to keep a decent expression for 15 minutes.
  • salzburysteak
    This dude is like a relic of YouTube’s past and yet he still hits nothing but grand slams, like the world he entered in has vanished and yet he remains eternal, god bless Michael
  • &y
    Micheal openly confessing to a federal crime to start a video is actually completely in character
  • bj dj
    I whould love to see an episode about how and why we summarise meaning and wisdom in fables. Children stories are simplified metaphors for not doing bad things or to do good ones. We feel like after we hear one sentence summarising an experience or feeling we much better understand that experience or feeling. And also get a feeling of validation of knowing others feel the same way about things.
  • Michael is the only man who can tell nonsense from scientific point of view for half an hour, confusing people more and more with every minute and yet he always makes sense
  • Entranced just watching this video. I never even realized I cared about the history of selfies. It's wild to think that after all these centuries, people back then were just people like us who wanted to see ourselves in a still image for whatever reason. Technology might become so advanced one day that we'll be able to capture 3D images of ourselves and our environment.
  • Hoot
    I love how Michael still uses Chudnow's music, the 145 Poodles at 5:01 is to me THE Vsauce-music. Makes it feel so nostalgic 👍
  • Pj Helbig
    I had no idea this would end up being so fascinating.
  • SuperTracker
    Can always count on Vsauce to turn a simple question into a 25 minutes history lesson.
  • Sam
    This dude answer the questions i think about while having the most painful sleep schedule