Only 24 hours ago, Americans remained blissfully unaware that our president had ever used a selfie stick, one of those gadgets that allows #millennials to take essential photos of themselves from slightly farther away. You know, one of these:
In case you still didn't know that President Obama has used a selfie stick, well, that snippet of a video from BuzzFeed proves it pretty conclusively.
We were curious, though, what the presidential sort-of-endorsement of the stick of selfie meant for sales of the horrible devices. Somewhat surprisingly, discussion of selfie sticks on social media didn't spike that much, as the graph below from Topsy makes clear.
We asked Google if they'd seen any increase in interest in the wake of the video, and their response (in the form of the graph below) was unequivocal: Yes.
Did this mean more sales? We reached out to a number of retailers, most of whom haven't yet responded. Ricky's, a New York City chain that's sort of like Spencer Gifts (if you remember that), said it had.
"We have received a large amount of Customer Care e-mails and 'In-store Pickup' requests for this item in the past day," Roger Quesada of Ricky's NYC told The Washington Post by e-mail on Friday. "We expect this news to have a very positive effect on sales in the coming weeks."
That's pretty anecdotal. But so far the evidence is as follows: President Obama is responsible for a surge in interest in and ownership of selfie sticks. A move that has unequivocally tarnished his legacy.