It’s not a scandal — it’s criminal

Very pleased to see that the national conversation about the latest digital data exploitation (celebrity edition) includes declarations that the victims have nothing whatsoever to apologize for in creating private images; that this is not a “scandal”, but a hugely criminal act; and that ordinary people taking advantage of the illicit, ill-gotten material just because it’s available/free is to be complicit in the original crime. Just as the act of simply viewing any child porn sustains the creation and dissemination of it, consuming illegally procured celebrity images encourages the criminal act of acquiring and publishing it. Celebrities do market their faces and bodies for public consumption, but they are entitled to own their images and create/sell them solely as they see fit, with full knowledge and consent. And they are entitled to be angry, outraged and seek justice, rather than just be grateful for public approval or pretend they think it’s funny and so they seem cool. Because of their subjects’ fame, these photo leaks get a large anonymous audience, but it’s all part of the same patriarchy and rape culture that encourages street harassment. This kind of hacking is exactly the same crime as peeping Tom or and breaking-and-entering, not to mention it obviously violates civil copyright laws.

(I feel that upskirting and many other modern paparazzi ‘techniques’ could fairly be included as criminal, but I understand the law hasn’t got there yet. Though some celebrity activists are working on it. Those photogs, and the mags that pay them, are seriously out of control.)

These are just a few essays. I may add more links here as I see more discussion.


About amywinns

Semi-snarky, semi-sincere, occasionally ranting, always paying attention. Feminist who can work a skirt and crack a joke. Grammar nerd who is also fun at parties. Mid-career writer/editor with 15 years’ experience in newspapers & magazines who now helps developers at a major media corporation communicate with the suits who write the checks. Pro-women, pro-family, pro-choice, pro-workingclass, pro-entrepreneur, pro-farmer. Like every other bourgeois Brooklynite, I choose local/organic/raw food — mostly vegetables — whenever possible/reasonable/affordable but I’m not a smug asshole about it. Hometown: Atlanta. Weird hobby: lindy hop. No pets, no kids, no thanks.
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