Last updated: 03:40 PM ET, Fri June 26 2015

Mickey Mouse Mandate: Disney Bans Scourge of Selfie Sticks at Theme Parks

Entertainment | Gabe Zaldivar | June 26, 2015

Mickey Mouse Mandate: Disney Bans Scourge of Selfie Sticks at Theme Parks

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Mickey just put on his oversized white gloves and dropped the hammer on selfie sticks at Disney Parks.

CNNMoney reports some sad news for travelers with Bluetooth enabled sticks in their bags: “Disney said Friday that it is banning them from its theme parks.”

From now on you will have to ask nearby tourists to snap your picture or stretch out your hand like we used to do way back in 2011. Or, perish the thought, you can just enjoy making memories instead of Instagram posts.

The news isn’t all that surprising. As TravelPulse’s Tom Bastek reported back in May, Disney had banned the use of selfie stick on various rides at its parks.

Now the ban is as absolute as Supreme Chancellor Palpatine’s power in the Galactic Senate.

CNNMoney quotes Disney spokeswoman Kim Prunty who explains the motivation behind such a ban: “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.”

Aside from safety concerns, the popular technology can also lead to rides being shut down as evidenced by CBS News recently:

And the ban covers those parks outside the world and will be implemented almost immediately.

CNNMoney states that the use of such items will be prohibited starting Tuesday, June 30 at Walt Disney World and Disneyland with the ban kicking in outside the U.S. on the next day, July 1, at Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland.

As noted by Bastek, there is no shortage of attractions and landmarks that have banned the use of the device, including events like Lollapalooza and Coachella.

As TravelPulse’s Donald Wood notes, selfie sticks have also been axed from places such as London's National Gallery, the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. and New York's Museum of Modern Art.

Now this isn’t to say the selfie stick is a horrible device that has no place in travel. Even this intrepid writer owns one.

Embarrassment aside, I should note that I bought it for specific purposes: snapping off pictures when hiking through the Cotswolds, capturing that perfect image when you are walking along a beach or any other isolated moments when you are with little more than a travel companion and your thoughts.

It’s not to be used in congested areas when the crush of other tourists make it problematic to extend a giant wand to take your picture.

And perhaps this will be a reminder to all of us to take fewer pictures and enjoy what travel has to offer in the moment.


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