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Several NYC Museums Ban Use Of 'Selfie-Sticks' By Patrons

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The so-called "selfie stick" is no longer welcome in some of the city's great museums.

The device allows cellphone camera users to hold their devices at a distance to take a better self-portrait. Some people swear by it.

"You can take good pictures of things inside the museum," Rodriguez told CBS2's Weijia Jiang.

Laura Rodriguez and her husband posed for a picture with their selfie stick outside the American Museum of Natural History, after snapping several shots inside. Selfie sticks are not banned there.

Many museums nationwide however have banned the gadgets, which help people take pictures of themselves from a distance. Some museum officials have said they pose several hazards to both patrons and the artwork.

"You can, just by looking at this, imagine the havoc a selfie stick might wreak in this kind of space," said Jennifer Northrup of the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.

In New York, the devices are now banned at the Museum of Modern Art, as well as the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.

"They could pose a danger to visitors or our objects on view," Northrup said.

Museum goers who use the sticks are torn about whether they should be banned. They say the sticks are easy to move out of the way in a dangerous situation. On the other hand they can imagine something going very wrong.

"Sometimes they have sculptures with no glass, or with the glass someone might scratch the glass or break it," Fatmah Ralmatroshui said.

Andrew DeLango said he nervously watched a man use a selfie stick inches away from a dinosaur exhibit.

"He could have knocked everything down, he could have been taking a selfie, then he hits one of the ribs," DeLango said.

Similar concerns could force more museum visitors to take a selfie the old fashioned way, sans stick.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is currently considering a ban.

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