Skip to navigationSkip to content

Here’s the truth about that viral mass selfie at a Hillary Clinton rally

Hillary Clinton Orlando Rally Selfie
Barbara Kinney/Hillary for America
Ignoring the candidate or playing along?
By Johnny Simon
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

A photo from Hillary Clinton’s campaign trail is going viral, with many describing it as emblematic of a culture more bent on scoring a selfie than actually listening to a possible future president. The image, captured by campaign photographer Barbara Kinney at a rally on Sept. 21 in Orlando, Florida, shows a beaming Clinton waving to a crowd that has apparently turned its back to her.

Judging by the responses on Twitter, the picture could invite multiple interpretations.

Are Clinton’s supporters so narcissistic that they can’t even give the candidate a moment of their attention? Is Clinton is so boring that her supporters would rather take a selfie than listen to her? Or maybe there’s an even simpler reason: She knew what the people wanted, and she offered them a chance to get that once-in-a-lifetime selfie.

In other frames shot by Kinner, we see an excited and attentive crowd as Clinton enters (albeit with phones in hand).

Barbara Kinney/Hillary for America
At attention.

And in a video filmed by none other than a heckling Trump supporter, you’ll see that after Clinton walks into the room, she says: ”Anyone who wants a selfie turn around right now.”

Do people like taking selfies with celebrities? Sure. Do they like selfies so much that they forget said celebrity is even in the room with them? We’re not quite there yet.

📬 A periodic dispatch from the annual session of the United Nations General Assembly in NYC.

By providing your email, you agree to the Quartz Privacy Policy.