Sexy Selfies: are these shots about control or just look-at-me?

Everywhere you look, there’s a picture of Stephanie Rice in a bikini. Look over there:

Last night Olympic swimmer Stephanie Rice tweeted this picture of herself lying on a sun lounge in a bikini, with a caption alongside it that read: “Life’s tough”.

Steph’s look-at-me-in-a-bikini shot is not the first she’s shared via social media. A couple of weeks ago she tweeted this picture, ostensibly ‘thanking’ a friend for buying her a new swimsuit.

It’s nice when your thank you note ends up on the front page of every news website in the country. But really, you could have just sent a card, right?

Photos of celebrities in swimmers is not new. Gossip mags are full of stalkerazzi shots of famous people, often on holidays, caught in their cossies. What’s new is that now the celebrities are taking these shots THEMSELVES. And sharing them with the world.

Have the hunted now become the hunters? Of themselves? And is this a bit weird?

Blame Demi Moore. She started it. Back when she was still married to Ashton Kutcher, we were all treated to the slightly sad spectacle of Demi taking a shot of herself with her phone while staring at her bikini-wearing self in the mirror.

Here are some of the latest celebrity sexy selfies.

Not sure why she took  it. Wait, yes we are. To prove that she may be 50 but she’s still hot. Ok yes you are. Now put it away.

Reality star Lisa Rinna jumped on board the sexy selfies train by taking a similar shot of herself in what she called ‘a tribute’ to Demi and tweeting it to her thousands of followers.

Ever since then, it’s been an avalanche of celebrities wanting to show us what they look like with most of the clothes off. It’s like a press release because they know it will be widely shared on social media and appear in mainstream media as well.

Body selfies. Self sexting. Sexy selfies. Matser-bexting.

Is it a way for celebrities to reclaim their bodies from the papapparazzi? Control their image? Or simply the latest example of extreme narcissism?