A 21 year old Russian woman, in the bloom of her young life, fell to her death recently while attempting to take a unique selfie. Anna Krupeynikov, a graduate of the Russian State University of Tourism and Service Studies, was with friends on a sightseeing bus in Moscow. She wandered off to take a picture in front of the Moscow International Business Center, one of the famous landmarks of the Russian capital. She leaned against the fence of a bridge, which it appears may have been broken.
19 year old Anton, one of the group of friends, notes what followed:
“Suddenly I heard a yell and someone said 'Anna fell down.' I thought it was a joke but then I saw the reaction of people who went and looked over the side of the bridge.”
The fence had given way, and Krupeynikov tumbled 40 feet to her death.
Anton Tsvetkov of the Commission on the Common House on Safety is investigating how the fence could have buckled under the weight of a single young woman, and who was responsible for its upkeep. But that will only solve one small part of an ongoing problem.
With frightening frequency, young people in Russia and beyond are injuring themselves, sometimes fatally, in the pursuit of the perfect selfie. A hundred, even a thousand, Instagram likes may lend some temporary self esteem in this age of social media fixation, but it can never be worth a human life. Let alone dozens.
In May, a Moscow woman was trying to take a photo with a pistol pressed against her temple. It went off, critically wounding her.
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In the same month, a man fell from a cliff in Bali to his death while attempting a fun—yet precarious—shot.
A Romanian teen electrocuted herself while posing for a selfie atop a train. She was just 18 years old.
And just recently, a man was struck by lightning in the UK mountains while carrying a selfie stick.
After we're done rolling our eyes at the vanity of youth, we should remember how deeply sad it is that these people lost the opportunity to get older, and wiser, like the rest of us have.