Bullying the Bullies or Challenging the Creepers? On Ending the Demand For Creepshots

Today’s column at Role/Reboot looks at the recent exposure of two of the Internet’s most spectacular “creeps” — and at the culture of male complicity that sustained them. Excerpt:

We need to see that in their own bizarre way, cyber-predators are as much exhibitionists as they are voyeurs. They derive obvious pleasure from violating young girls’ privacy. But as their boasting makes clear, an equally vital turn-on comes when they are recognized for their ability to source and post images that no one else can. It’s “kiss and tell” behavior in which the blackmail of children substitutes for the kissing, but the payoff is the same: other men’s praise.

It’s important to warn teens about the dangers of webcams, and it’s vital to hunt down nasty trolls like Brutsch and sadists like Maxson. We need to acknowledge, however, that this is a strategy that focuses on drying up the “supply” of images and videos that get posted online. The real solution lies in ending adult men’s demand for visual access to the bodies of the underage and the unsuspecting. That’s only quixotic if we believe that most straight men’s sexuality is both naturally predatory and naturally directed toward adolescent girls.

The currency of “creepshots,” “jailbait,” and blackmail isn’t sex. It’s power—the power to capture the image of a girl who doesn’t know she’s being photographed, or to shame her by endlessly reposting what was meant to be a private image. What drew male fans to Brutsch and Maxson wasn’t just the chance to see pubescent boobs, but to bond over the experience of another human being’s humiliation. Ending the allure of these forums will mean challenging men to make this kind of exploitation fundamentally unacceptable.

10 thoughts on “Bullying the Bullies or Challenging the Creepers? On Ending the Demand For Creepshots

  1. Hugo, I would appreciate a serious answer to this:

    I am a professional, and I strive to keep clients happy.

    You are clearly in a different area, where you can alienate as many people as you like.

    What I am wondering: I am seeing people in the Internet with increasing hostility against you, many to the point of threatening physical attacks.

    I would personally not want that feeling at all. You don’t seem to mind in the least. Can you tell me what your thinking is about that?

  2. I wonder why women don’t do this to men, or maybe they do… There is this site, which has a lot of the elements, non-consensual photos of men, a rating system ect… But the site’s moderators have a no under 18’s and no nudity policy (like some of the creepshot Reddits). Also it feels less bad, possibly because the victims are male, and we are not trained to see men as victims. Also because it is hard to imagine a man losing his job because his photo has a high rating on tubecrush.

    http://tubecrush.net/

    However Jailbait is different, and I often wonder what it is about the way our society treats boys that makes so many of us into complete bastards.

  3. Kathrin, I want to be clear I don’t enjoy being hated. Who does?

    The truth is that I know some of the criticism is warranted. Some of it isn’t. Some of it is evidence that I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, which is making a case for what I believe without regard to popularity. I’m not pandering.

    At the same time, I’m also quietly confident I’m on the right path. I’ve got a strong accountability team around me. I have a loving family and a lot of great friends. Their support trumps the online hate. It really does.

    I have gotten more selective about what comments or emails I read. And on a handful of occasions, I’ve reported stuff to the police. But in the end, I don’t think anyone of these critics represents an actual physical threat. I’m gonna keep on keeping on, knowing my desire to do the work I feel called to do will outlast their desire to insult me.

    • Re: I’m not pandering.

      Except, apparently, to the hardcore feminist lobby. Amanda Marcotte, Jessica Valentie, and the jezebels at Jezebel. There’s virtually no limit to the depth of stupidity or moral vacuity that Mr. Schwyzer won’t sink to please those yahoos.

    • “On the right path” for what, Hugo?

      You have published nothing in peer-reviewed journals or anything approaching the seriousness of that.

      You don’t really have original ideas – most of your stuff (whether you know it or not) is recycled feminist blatherings. Your original contribution seems to be to give it a candy coating of an even harder anti-male slant.

      You simply defame and insult men as a group in every way you can. You think that your internal way of thinking is how all men think (hint: it’s really not). You don’t seem to get that your narcissism is simply the motivation behind all of this rationalization. You really believe it yourself.

      • And you NEVER blather and your writing is serious, completely original, and peer reviewed.

        Uh huh.

        “What drew male fans to Brutsch and Maxson wasn’t just the chance to see pubescent boobs, but to bond over the experience of another human being’s humiliation.”

        This. This. This.

        • “And you NEVER blather and your writing is serious, completely original, and peer reviewed.”

          ——

          I don’t think the poster you are trying to slam, “Ellen”, is the one confidently “asserting that he is on the right path” with his work.

          Just to sort it out: One is a laughable narcissist, bragging about accomplishments that don’t really seem like accomplishments.

          The other one is simply pointing that out, but not bragging about anything himself.

          Can you determine which is which? Put on your thinking cap.

  4. “What I am wondering: I am seeing people in the Internet with increasing hostility against you, many to the point of threatening physical attacks.”

    ________________

    Risk-taking is part of a psychopathic personality. He is taking a risk. Psychopaths get a kick out of it.

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