The selfie (from left): Jared Leto, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Channing Tatum, Ellen DeGeneres, Julia Roberts, Kevin Spacey, Bradley Cooper, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyong’o, Peter Nyong’o Jr., and Angelina Jolie.
Image Credit: AP

The iconic Oscar selfie taken by television host, actress, writer, and producer Ellen DeGeneres has suddenly disappeared from X, previously known as Twitter, sparking outrage among social media users. This picture was one of the epic casualties when an alleged technical glitch wiped out images posted from 2011 to 2014. 

Among all the seemingly temporary loss of pictorial data on X, the star-studded selfie taken during DeGeneres’ stint as the host stood out. The glamorous and feel-good selfie, which had actors like Bradley Cooper, Meryl Streep, and Jennifer Lawrence, had “broken Twitter’ in 2014, amassing millions of views. More than the Oscar ceremony and its winners, it was this selfie that ruled the internet at that point. 

According to reports, the image may have vanished due to an update that caused links used for image sharing to malfunction. The move hasn’t gone down too well among users who had invested years in their digital memories.

It was Tech writer Tom Coates who altered the public to the significant removal of pre-2014 media content from X. While exceptions existed, the outcry from users was strong.

"Why remove our ability to see our posts, memories, and literal historical events from X? With no warning at all," complained a disgruntled user.

The move was met with speculation about cost-saving motives, with some suggesting that the removal of older content aimed to reduce storage expenses. Others called for users to download their Twitter data in light of the incident, drawing parallels to the abrupt disappearance of Reddit content earlier in the year.

It’s also being reported that this could be a tiny blip. Some users claim that issue of disappearing iconic images was due to a bug, not a calculated decision. While the bug was looked into, the hashtag #TwitterDeletesPhotos began trending, underscoring the collective anxiety surrounding the preservation of digital legacies.

Let’s not forget, tech magnate Elon Musk’s Twitter haul has drawn both applause and ire from users, triggering a heated debate on social media freedom, content visibility, and the preservation of iconic moments.

Last year, Musk acquired the social media giant Twitter, rebranding it as "X." Under his leadership, X has undergone a series of transformative changes which was met with polarizing reactions.

The implementation of a subscription-based verification system for the coveted blue tick was the most controversial.

Previously, the blue tick symbol indicated a verified account, often belonging to influential figures and celebrities. Now, users must pay for verification, a move that has stirred debates about equity and access in the digital space.

However, a glimmer of resolution emerged as some users discovered that the issue was due to a bug, not a calculated decision. The bug was promptly fixed, but not before the hashtag #TwitterDeletesPhotos began trending, underscoring the collective anxiety surrounding the preservation of digital legacies.

As Elon Musk's Twitter metamorphosis continues to reshape the digital realm, the uproar surrounding these sweeping changes serves as a potent reminder of the delicate balance between innovation and the preservation of our digital past. In the age of social media, where information and memories intertwine, the boundaries between progress and erasure remain ever-fragile.