WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — The White House says it has not banned selfies despite Olympic athletes barred during a visit last week.
The Associated Press reports that some American Olympians were told not to take pictures with their cellphones while meeting with President Barack Obama at the White House last week.
“I was a little bummed. I thought about trying to sneak one, but they were pretty adamant about it,” Nick Goepper, who won the bronze medal in slopestyle skiing, said. “I’m sure if they would’ve allowed it, there’d be 150 people with selfies with the president right now.”
The selfie controversy stems from the Boston Red Sox visit to the White House where David Ortiz took a selfie with Obama. Critics say that the photo was a marketing ploy from Samsung when they used the picture Ortiz took from a Samsung phone in an advertisement.
— David Ortiz (@davidortiz) April 1, 2014
Ortiz told The Boston Globe that the photo was not part of any deal with Samsung.
“That was one of those things that just happened. I gave him the jersey, and the photographers were going to take their pictures and I thought, really at the last second, maybe I should snap a shot with my phone while I have the chance,” Ortiz explained to The Globe. “It had nothing to do with no deals.”
The White House confirmed to the AP that the Olympic athletes were told not to take their own photos of the president. Despite that, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Monday that there was no ban on selfies at the White House.
“There’s no discussion of a ban,” Carney said.
Olympians were allowed, though, to take general pictures inside the White House.
“It would have been fun but I wasn’t too bummed,” aerials skier Emily Cook said. “He is the president, after all.”
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