Insidious Selfies: Should Leaders Act like the Rest of Us?


The age of selfie politics is upon us, and it is time to examine the message behind it.

Last year in May, President Barack Obama came to Malaysia for the first time. When he was here, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak couldn’t resist the opportunity to take a selfie with the most powerful man in the world. It made headlines. And then Najib posted another selfie with Obama, this time in the Beast, the presidential car.

This was not the first time our Prime Minister took selfies.

In November 2013, at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting held in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Najib took a selfie with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Lee tweeted the photograph into a frenzied social media. It received a lot of attention, many fans and many critics. But people were mostly just amused.

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