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Shanghai Disneyland to ban selfie sticks for safety

Updated: 2015-07-04

( China Daily )

The selfie stick, which Time magazine listed as one of the best inventions of last year, will be banned for safety concerns in the Shanghai Disneyland resort when it opens in the spring of 2016.

"We strive to provide a great experience for the entire family, and unfortunately selfie sticks have become a growing safety concern for both our guests and cast," Disney spokeswoman Kim Prunty said. The rules apply to all the Disney resorts and parks in the world, including the one to be opened in Shanghai.

Tourists bringing the apparatus - an extendible pole on which a user can attach a smartphone to take self-portraits - will be requested to put them away in lockers at the entrance. Notices of the prohibition will be posted around the park.

Selfie sticks have been in fashion globally, favored by tourists and politicians, including US President Barack Obama and South Korean President Park Geun-hye.

Most people who spoke with China Daily on Friday applauded the precaution and considered it reasonable.

"If someone uses a selfie stick on adventure rides, say the roller coaster, and it falls and gets stuck in the equipment, it would be a terrible headline worldwide the next morning," said Jenny Wong, a Canadian working in Shanghai.

Wong, who just visited California, saw tourists using selfie sticks in front of landmark statues inside amusement parks. She believes the behavior would bring more trouble to the Shanghai resort, which might be more crowded.

"If a tourist stays at a certain spot for a long time, swinging the stick for a better angle and selfie, it might be a headache to passers-by," said the 22-year-old.

Several people mentioned the parade and the fireworks show, which are usually the highlights of the day when tourists gather.

"Selfie sticks, if used inappropriately, may affect the show and trigger conflicts among tourists, such as blocking others' sight," said Xu Wenhao, 28, a white-collar worker from Shanghai.

And there are hordes of children in the parks. "The ban is worth it, considering the young children riding on fathers' necks or sleeping in strollers, " says Yu Yalin, mother of a 3-year-old, adding that the products are usually bought online and of varying quality.

Famous museums such as Beijing's Palace Museum and the Museum of Modern Art in New York have also banned selfie sticks to protect cultural relics and visitors.

Wang Zhuoqiong in Beijing contributed to this story.