Hit any major tourist site today and you’ll find plenty of people stretching their arms out awkwardly as they attempt to snap a selfie in front of whatever popular landmark it is they’re visiting. Either that or you’ll see smartphones gripped in the clutches of selfie sticks waving precariously above people’s heads as everyone tries to get the best shot for their next social media post. Heck, it’s probably you.
What you probably won’t see is a fight breaking out between two people trying to get that all-important selfie.
According to Rome’s police department, the trouble started when a 19-year-old Dutch woman and a 44-year-old Italian-American fell out as they jostled for what was apparently the the ideal spot for grabbing a selfie with the capital city’s iconic fountain.
Photos posted on the police department’s Facebook page show the two women “slapping and punching” each other, presumably before either of them had had a chance to secure their selfie.
But it didn’t stop there. Clearly upset by the altercation, members of both families piled in, turning the fight into a brawl, and offering tourists a spectacle that no doubt momentarily relegated the famous fountain to becoming the second most interesting thing in the vicinity.
A total of eight people were involved in the fracas, which only ended when two police officers arrived on the scene to separate the fighting families.
The bust-up reportedly lasted “a few minutes” and caused minor injuries to those involved.
Nevertheless, members of both families were charged over the violent episode.
The undignified squabble occurred just days after a Rome city councillor floated the idea of preventing visiting tourists from stopping at the site, instead forcing them to file past the fountain and through the piazza in a bid to ease chronic overcrowding. In light of the recent incident, they might also want to consider banning selfies at the famous site, too.
Digital Trends recently posted a piece offering three top tips for getting the perfect selfie. Punching someone in the face to secure a prime spot is not one of them.