Photographs & Selfies & why NEWT is great

I'm on holiday in Taiwan and I am now in an old village which is famous for its old buildings. I'm here with my daughter and we've taken a lot of photos of each other and selfies too. She posts them on various social media such as Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram and I do the same. I look around me and EVERYONE is taking thousands of photos and selfies.

An obsession with the taking of pics is not limited to Asians only although I'm ready to admit that perhaps we Asians are more obsessed with taking selfies than most other people. I've travelled with friends from Europe and the US and many of them seem to prefer taking scenery shots than photos with themselves in the pics. But these friends of mine are older folks. Young people of all nationalities are always taking selfies. Last year, I was in a restaurant in Prague and I was a little self-conscious about taking a selfie when my food arrived. I didn't want the other diners to mutter under their breath, 'Oh, these Asians and their selfies!' At the next table was a young couple, and I could tell from their conversation that they were Czech. They took about a dozen selfies when their food arrived. That emboldened me.

Personally, I'm all for selfies. I take dozens of them even when I'm at home. I've always been a careful diary keeper since I was 7 and nowadays, I've stopped recording my daily life in a diary and I find myself taking selfies as a means of keeping a journal of my life the way I used to record everything in writing. Taking selfies is of course a lot quicker and pictures are always more graphic and interesting. A selfie of me on a bike has the date and time in its Exif data and that sure beats having to write in my diary that I went cycling at a particular time on a particular date. It's instantaneous.

Now here is where my philosophy differs from that of most of my Asian naturist friends. Many of them love taking selfies and posting them online too. But they only post clothed selfies even though they are naturists. For me personally, (and I must STRESS that this only applies to me and not to others), I would consider myself hypocritical if I posted clothed selfies of myself all over the internet but I shied away from posting my own nude selfies. So I make it a point to post nude selfies in my blogs and online media, such as Naktiv and tumblr.

But some American naturists who are opposed to posting their own nude selfies online (and their blogs are filled with photos of OTHER nude people and never their own) took issue with me on this. One of them who calls himself All-nudist openly expresses his disapproval of my blog which ONLY contains my nude photos. But my policy is not to post other people's photos unless I have their express permission and I really don't like using internet photos because of copyright issues and besides, why should I steal other people's photos when my blog is about my experiences? Naturally, my own naturist blog, https://itsmyprivatelife.wordpress.com/ which by its very title is about 'my private life' should of course be about me and not other people.

I've long made it my policy not to go to a place that bans the camera. Some nudist places do that. WNBR is cool because it's camera friendly. But there is one naturist event that I find appealing - NEWT. I found this in the Rules section and I decided that this is an event for me:

'This is not a private/secret nudist club walk. Please don't be motivated to come along by the photos on these pages and then complain that you don't want your photo taken, anyone coming on a NEWT implicitly accepts the idea that we will be taking photos of these adventures, and we will then publish them to encourage others, like you, to do likewise.'

Wow! This is an event that is fully in line with my naturist philosophy. We all believe nudity is natural and wholesome and we should encourage others to try it and we are all in favour of promoting naturism but how can we promote it if we are hiding our faces all the time, as some people seem to do whenever their nude photos appear? Of course the event should be photographed and all of us should publish them in blogs. That's the only way we can encourage others to participate in future NEWT events and other similar nude hiking events. If there is one thing I hate, it's a lets-all-be-naked-in-secret events. Such events can hardly be called naturist. It's more like a clandestine nude activity and as far as I know all clandestine nude activities tend to be illicit and possibly sexual. True naturist activities are events that are blogged by participants with photos shared with family and friends.

Kudos to the organisers for promoting naturism! Now, I had better go for dinner. I almost forgot that I was on holiday! LOL

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31 thoughts on “Photographs & Selfies & why NEWT is great”

  1. Quoting Bob Knows: “A news story reports that some tourists in Asia are charged with criminal causing earthquakes because they took naked selfies.” We may not be Snopes, but we probably need an authoritative link/reference for this highly amusing claim, please? 🙂

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  2. I was always heartened by the response to the group photograph at BN events; 99% of the participants at the event would happily turn up for the pictures. After the 'BN magazine only' pictures had been taken and it was announced that the next picture would be a 'publicity anywhere' one, very few people left at that moment and for those who did it was often with reluctance because they were teachers or similar and couldn't afford to be recognised, such is the prejudice of a small, but vocal minority in society.

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    • Of course. Our cavemen forefathers did very well without the camera. LOL. I just got back to my hotel room. I had gone for a very early dinner at Taiwan's most famous restaurant. It's impossible to get a table if you don't go there before dinner time. EVERYONE in the restaurant did the current 'grace before meal' i.e. they took pics of their food (with or without further selfies). My wife used to say that I was a selfie addict but I think the whole world is now afflicted with this addiction. LOL. Years ago, I was about to take the ferry to Tioman Island when I saw an American woman talking to the boatman. She looked devastated. She told him her camera was not functioning and there was no point going to the island without her camera. At that time I thought she was mad. But I now sympathise with her.

      There was a time when I went regularly to Eastern Europe to play my clarinet with some of the Conservatory students. We had a lot of fun eating pork knuckles and goulash and drinking beer. But these experiences are replaced by different experiences all the time and soon, the memory fades somewhat. Some of these experiences are as good as gone. But I captured a whole lot of them in photos and videos. Our experiences are only lived at that moment. They disappear immediately after and what is left is a fading memory. Photos and videos don't fade.

      Yes, we can of course live our lives and experience things without taking pics and videos. But the experiences are short-lived. We need photos and videos to keep the experiences alive for ever.

      Photos and videos mean a lot to me. They are a record of my life and I do sometimes want to see what I did years ago. Maybe I think this way because I have always kept a diary and I used to faithfully record each day's experiences. I only stopped doing that when I started to take photos instead. Photos are better. I don't really read through my old diaries but I do see the photos.

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      • My mother died last year at the grand old age of 100 (+ 23 days). Ten months earlier, on boxing day 2013, I was with her and stuck for something to do, I got out my dad's old projector and a couple of boxes of the slides he used to take – the memories came flooding back for both me and my mother and the best pictures where those in which we appeared. The landscapes, etc. were nice, but those in which we appeared were the best. Because dad was always on the wrong side of the camera, we missed his presence; if only he had taken some selfies…

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        • I'm sorry about your mother's passing. But what you wrote is precisely in line with my view on the importance of taking selfies. That is exactly what I feel too. Whenever I look at the photos I've taken, the scenery shots are nice but they lack the human element. But of course I go overboard. I take really a lot of selfies all the time. And all my cameras are designed to take selfies. I'm now in Taiwan with my daughter and it's a good thing we both brought with us three cameras and two sets of Samsung Note 4. One of the cameras malfunctioned and we still have backups. LOL. Photos are great even if someone is angry. Last summer, I was in Iceland with my family and my wife, who hates the cold, was furious that our summer vacation was so cold. We had to trudge through snow and ice in some remote parts of Iceland. I took a selfie of the entire family and both my kids and I were smiling but my wife looked distinctly disgruntled. She had on a thick furry snow hat that made her look ridiculous. The whole family, including my wife, have a good laugh every time we see that photo. Photos are very powerful in spreading love and good cheer. And photos are great in spreading naturism and in convincing the textile world that naturism is NOT sexual. As I've told Richard once, I'm perfectly OK with my photos being used to promote naturism. But of course it's preferable to let me have a look at the photo so I can choose one with a better angle of me – where my blemishes are not so pronounced. LOL. I have a theory that the world will never accept naturism as natural and decent if we naturists do not show by our own actions that nudity is natural and decent. For this reason, even though I live in a conservative society with draconian laws against nudity and I know of naturists who have been sent to prison, I still openly post my photos without hiding my face. I believe that if the world is flooded with decent naturist photos, it will soon accept naturism because right now, there is a huge imbalance and most nude pics online are pornographic. The world needs to know nudity is not porn.

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      • Im a fan of many of the pictures you shared and I got lots of digital and printed pictures of my own memories from before and after the "digital revolution"
        I dont look at them very often, one day I think I will love to go through them and remember places peoples friends and more, even those I left behind or countries I would never be able to go back to.
        Still we tend to save everything we live in a picture nowadays. There is not right or wrong here, I just feel Nature gave us the gift to let many of our memories to
        slip through, to go and be lost. Thats because our identities are shaped by who we are, who we love or work with and so on, but you dont need a face to remember what he or she meant to yourself. If you see that face many years after in a picture it can be a great pleasure, of course, but it also may confine your memories to that picture or the set of pictures. Say you didnt shoot some event, it would disappear as memory when confronted with events full of pictures, even if that single event meant much more to your identity. A
        picture can both represent and redesign the shape of our memories.
        We all have memories that we keep and many more that go. Thats just how we are made. The illusion is believing we can actually boycott this process. We cant, and it is not something to fear.
        Thats my thought, and just that, and I ll be happy to continue looking at your pics that I have already enjoyed in the past.

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        • You are right. There are some photos that are sad. When my best friend had cancer, he could still function quite normally. We went for meals and as usual, I took photos and selfies. A few years later, he passed away. I'm sure there'll be more such photos as we age. But this is life. I think this is why we humans come up with religion. To help us cope with death of friends and family.

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  3. Yes, I agree with Greg. I too have hundreds of nude selfies on Flickr. I hope they don't delete my account because it'll be a great loss to me. I think as long as the photos are not sexual and just nude, it should be ok on Flickr. My Flickr account is open to the public and I've not received any warning. Please tell me more about what they said to you before deleting your Flickr account. I'm concerned the same thing will happen to me one day.

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    • Read the rules. There are thousands of legal sexual photos and as long as they are flagged correctly as restricted they are fine.
      Flickr is much more open than the Naktiv site is as far as what may be posted. Sex parties are valid photos on flickr but they must be flagged correctly.
      All photos must be flagged correctly and it makes no difference if the are public or friend or private viewing. All photos showing frontal nudity must be restricted. Female breasts and all buttocks must be moderate. Sexual activity and anything out of the norm, BDSM eg. must at least be moderate. Safe should only be used if the photo is okay for the average textile grandma and children. Muslim countries and puritan Americans will complain.
      Complaints from members cause the deletions.

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  4. Deleted by Flickr?
    I have hundreds of nudes on Flickr correctly flagged so that people who are fine with nudity can see it and people (or countries) not okay don't have it forced on them.
    There is even what I would consider pornography posted because Flickr does not censor.

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  5. I take selfies too, but perhaps not as many as you. I take more selfies when I'm doing something unusual like a trip or a vacation. I don't take many selfies of myself at home naked.

    I posted many of my naked selfies on Flickr.com, but my account got deleted. All the links that I posted on other sites now get a blank link. I need a new photo bucket site that doesn't censor nudity.

    I do Get-Caching naked. I take selfies of finding the cache, one with the container held in front and one without. The Geocache.com site apparently wants the censored photos only.

    I hope you and your daughter got to take naked selfies at the Old Buildings you are seeing on vacation. Taking naked photos at tourist attractions is apparently popular.

    A news story reports that some tourists in Asia are charged with criminal causing earthquakes because they took naked selfies. Watch your back.

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