#Self-ishness: Sydney Hostage Crisis Selfies & Jokes Spark Social Media Backlash

The standoff which took place in a cafe and chocolate shop in the heart of Sydney left three people dead including the gunman, and it has shocked Australia and the world.

But another crime against humanity took place just outside the danger zone: the sight of people using the siege scene as a backdrop for their selfless while lives still hung in the balance.

Cheerful onlookers have been snapping mobile phone “selfless” at the perimeters of the Sydney siege as a still unknown number of hostages remain prisoners of a gunman.

Several photos being shared were originally uploaded to Instagram. One man shared a photo with a fire truck in the background and the hashtag #hostagesituationselfie. The photo has since been deleted from his account.

The incidents have caused social media backlash, with many outright bashing people for their insensitivity.

“To the tourists taking selfies outside the Sydney siege- how would you like to be in that cafe?” read one Tweet from a user. “People’s lives are endangered and people are taking selfies in front of the Sydney siege, how disrespectful and idiotic”, read another.

Some people know the appropriate time and place, and some people are just #Self-ish.