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Active Questions

Why do young people hold up two fingers every time they pose for a snapshot?
Jokes, Polls & Anything Else / 2:59 AM - Wednesday November 04, 2009

Why do young people hold up two fingers every time they pose for a snapshot?

No one will explain this to me, yet this tradition seems universal. Where did it come from? What does it mean?

- Asked by steveharrymike, A Creative, Male, 46-55, Los Angeles, Artist / Musician / Writer

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It's the peace sign.

Here's my interpretation, having done zero research.

The peace sign was designed in the 70's as an anti-war symbol (duh-- PEACE sign). It was representative of two people pushing over a missile. It morphed into the expression of two raised fingers (though NEVER show this to a Brit with the back of the hand facing them, it's an insult. During a fight with the Scots, they threatened to cut off the arrow-pulling fingers of every Scot. To taunt the British when they lost, the Scots presented their two intact fingers).

Now it's just an expression that can be easily translated to photos. It's really popular in Asia, I think just because they're fascinated with American culture. "Peace" is now a viable substitute for "Goodbye," too.

- Response by anie01, A Thinker, Female, 26-28, Teaching

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It means "peace" and a call out to friends. I know in Asia it was an mimicry of the Americans which held up two fingers to symbolize victory. In a more practical sense, holding up a full palm is very standoffish.

- Response by zerotohero2, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 36-45, Los Angeles, Who Cares?

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It is not only young people that do this, It is the peace sign, but started out at V for victory during WWII.

- Response by barbb, An Alternative Girl, Female, Who Cares?, Other Profession

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Old habits never die.....especially giving the peace sign or victory. It's tradition that has come down from perhaps the 60's.....and even well before that, perhaps even during WWII....

- Response by richard77, A Creative, Male, Who Cares?

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In a V shape? It's the peace sign

- Response by hulagirl55, A Sportif, Female, Who Cares?, Who Cares?

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Anie, your information is slightly confused.

I've never heard of the peace sign as being a missile pushed over/

Secondly, Scots are British. The British V-sign insult originates at the Battle of Agincourt- England against France, when the French said they would cut off the much-feared English longbowmen's fingers (rendering them useless) if victorious. The English won, and marched through the town fingers aloft in an act of defiance.

- Response by sjc74, A Guy Critical, Male, 36-45, London

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