Selfies are trending and millennials love to take a picture of everything they do and upload it on social media but at what cost?
It has been years since taking a selfie started trending. It is one of the only trends that has still not died down. People love taking pictures of what they are doing and where they are at to share on social media and tell the world what they are up to. Sure, people like to take pictures when they are on vacation especially when there's a beautiful background that (at least in their heads) is begging to be captured. However, sometimes trying to get the best selfie can lead to injury or death even. It can also cause damage to other people or living beings in your environment and this is something no one keeps in mind as they are only focused on getting the best picture they can. Recently, Tulip growers in the Netherlands begged the tourists to stop taking selfies in their fields because they end up trampling the flowers.
The Dutch Tulip growers complained that they face a loss worth thousands of Euros because of the number of tourists that visit their fields and crush the flowers while trying to take a picture of the beautiful tulips in the background. Colorful Tulip fields are one of the most attractive tourist destinations in the Netherlands. With the rise of the selfie in recent years has resulted in an increase in damage to the flowers. Tourists just enter and walk around in the fields, not particularly looking where they step.
The tulip growers seem to have had enough of this and approached the tourist board. Now, the Dutch tourist board has extended their support to the growers and both of them are fighting back. They have launched a social media campaign to inform people not to go around crushing the flowers as it affects them financially and also hurts the plants (which is a living organism that we need to respect). They have also employed a team of ambassadors to make sure that the tourists do not step on the bulbs during their travel.
"They cross all over the fields and they damage the [tulips]," gardener and farmer Simon Pennings, who owns more than 40 fields to the west of Amsterdam, told CNN. According to Pennings, this problem has only emerged in the past few years, ever since the 'selfie culture' started. "Last year I had one field and there were 200 people in the field," he added. "We have to keep them clear ... we have fields nearby the road and all the time, from 10 o'clock in the morning to nine in the evening, they take pictures."
Toerists are ignoring signs, don't listen to owners, and because of the fact they are with too many, blocking all the roads, they cause a lot of damage. Owners depend on it to make a living, seeing their lifes work destroyed, bc toerists think it's only there to please them.— Astrid Visser (@ruitendrop) April 25, 2019
"When the tulips are damaged the bulb won't grow," he explained. He mentioned that the selfie-takers are often ignorant of their surroundings while taking a picture since their focus is on getting the perfect picture. Pennings said that on an average there are thousands of people who walk through his fields on a daily basis. The tourists once caused a 10,000 Euro damage to his plants. "For me, that was the point where I said, 'this has to be changed.'"
According to the Dutch tourist board, Instagram and other social media sites are responsible for this 'selfie culture' which has resulted in the problem of trespassing.
"It is incredibly tempting, of course, to walk into a tulip field and shoot a picture in the sea of wonderful flowers," an online guide from the board reads, adding: "(but) surely you would not like people to walk into your back yard without asking every day."
"Ten years ago there were lots of people 50 and older," Dutch tourist board spokeswoman Elsje van Vuuren said in an interview with CNN. "In the last two years since Instagram is up and coming, there are lots of millennials visiting."
"You are very welcome, please come and visit the flower fields, but please be aware that you're not allowed to visit the fields inside," she added, noting that the problem is not confined to the fields. "We see it in tulip fields and also in museums," she added. Vureen also mentioned that museums in the Netherlands have now opened 'selfie spots' for the tourists in order to make sure they do not violate the rules by trying to secretly click pictures wherever they like. The tourist group's video says tulips are "nourished with love and cherished by caring Dutch farmers. But a predator lures from above, careless and unknowingly destructive," the video adds, showing a woman stepping on a flower to take a selfie. "Enjoy our flower fields but make sure it is tulip friendly."