Blogs

One solution to revenge porn: ‘cad-shaming’

29 April 2014

12:23 PM

29 April 2014

12:23 PM

I’m kicking myself because back in 2011 or 2012 Paddy Power gave me odds of 66/1 on Ukip topping the 2014 poll, which I chickened out of taking. It was perfectly likely that Ukip would win because their views on a range of subjects are close to the median British average, while the three main parties (or LIBLABCON as I call them when posting on messageboards under the name ‘Sword of Odin’) are often in a world of their own. But I also thought that the party brand could be made toxic by media exposure of its most extreme members, and great denunciations from the commentariat.

As it is Ukip’s support has ballooned so quickly that the almost daily revelations of its wackier members seem to make no difference. Maybe toxicity is not determined by press reports but the situation on the ground. If a third of voters in some regions are going Ukip, then the average politically-interested person is going to know quite a few openly Ukip-supporting people, and many of them are going to be normal, empathetic people.

But what should have told me that the brand wasn’t going toxic was something simpler: Ukip attracts quite a lot of beautiful young women. That’s sexual selection. Beautiful people, superficially at least, are less likely to be weird and enraged. Beautiful people also follow success and attract it.

One such Kipper is poor Lizzy Vaid, the latest victim of revenge porn, who as Milo Yiannopoulos pointed out has received little in the way of support from the sisters. Can you imagine if this had happened to a Labour equivalent? Comment is Free would have crashed with sheer anger.

[Alt-Text]


This is despite revenge porn being as misogynistic as things get, and almost entirely targeted at women; anyway I don’t imagine that if there was a sex video of me out there it would have quite the same market, a video as pathos-inducing as watching a confused and tired seagull trying to free its head from some plastic.

I rather share Freddy Gray’s bemusement at the whole phenomenon, seeing as it does involve an astonishing level of naivety. That’s perhaps a generation thing, as smartphones didn’t appear until I was hitting 30; before that, if you took videos of yourselves at it, you were basically a sex person.

But I’m also rather confused by the way people respond to this misogyny, mostly writing that the problem is the idea of sexual shame itself. Yet as anyone who has studied the theory or practise of human behaviour can tell you, most ‘slut-shaming’ is done by women, not men, and women usually seek to shame other women who are promiscuous, sexually active or just flirtatious.

There are obvious evolutionary reasons for this, yet some strands of feminism hope that women can behave like a union by removing all the shame attached to sex; that’s never going to happen, and when women fail to act like such a union, such as when one of their number is abandoned for showing political unorthodoxy, it just illustrates how feeble this idea is.

Social pressures should go with the grain of human nature, not push against it. Why not try to shame the men who do this instead? Cad-shaming, as it were. I can’t think of anything lower or less manly than selling a sex video of a former lover, yet the men who sell these things, or post them online, are rarely shamed. And any social stigma that reduces men’s success with the opposite sex will start to have an impact pretty soon; as will anything that increases their attractiveness, including having the ‘right’ politics – which is why chaps are so keen always to display their tolerance, intelligence and high-status.

PS: Having Googled ‘cad-shaming’ I’ve found that someone else also thought of it.

Subscribe to The Spectator today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Get more Spectator for less – just £12 for 12 issues.


Show comments
  • transponder

    There’s a lot going on here. First, there is the idea that you’re not really having an experience unless a camera is involved — an idea I rejected early, which is why a video camera didn’t even occur to me until after my puppy had become a grown-up, though her antics and adorableness would have made hours and hours of YouTube videos.

    The second thought is rather different. As I (dimly) recall, when I was out-of-mind I was not only not concerned about saving anything for posterity, but I was not in a state that could be recaptured later or that was fit for viewing in any mood or at any time. In short, the complete now-and-gone-forever moment was then and gone forever. It neither needed nor wanted any enhancement or gilding. I really do wonder why other people do it, sometimes. They clearly don’t get enough out of it for what it simply IS. Otherwise they wouldn’t resort to these compromising and ultimately pointless attempts at embroidery.

    The third thought is that people share intimacy now far too easily. To echo someone else in the comments section, a real boyfriend would not have turned nasty this way, even after a break-up.

  • Gwangi

    It’s not misogyny, it’s plain old-fashioned revenge – of the nasty, vindictive and spiteful type women are expert at. Men are just learning from women how to be nasty and vile, in a devious underhand way, that is all.
    Why no call for the revenge women take against men to be made illegal? All that damaging cars, cutting up suits, turning children against their fathers with hate campaigns and lies?

    • cartimandua

      Doesn’t ruin lives and careers and is not a widespread problem. Only a tiny % of divorcing couples are so contentious they cannot sort out access decently.
      One or both of the parents are nuts when they can’t sort it out.
      When someone is endlessly vile about women it just doesn’t look good at all.

  • cartimandua

    Apparently a few US states have made this sort of thing illegal.

  • StephanieJCW

    “Yet as anyone who has studied the theory or practise of human behaviour can tell you, most ‘slut-shaming’ is done by women, not men, and women usually seek to shame other women who are promiscuous, sexually active or just flirtatious.”

    What. Bollox!

    It maybe expressed in different ways but I have heard many many many many many many men refer to the “neighbourhood bike”. And note that while they would sleep with someone she absolutely is not wife material.

    “There are obvious evolutionary reasons for this,”

    What ‘obvious evolutionary reasons’ do women have to slut-shame other women?

    • Liz

      I think he means that we women will use whatever means that are at our disposal to knock out the competition for males.
      But he is ignoring the fact that those means were provided by males. Sl*t-shaming boils down to men punishing women for having s*x with other men other than themselves.

      • transponder

        Meanwhile, does any woman feel disgust at the number of places a man has stuck his thing over the years? The thought of a vastly promiscuous man — Mick Jagger comes to mind — is distasteful to me. Men are understood to like virginal women. I rather like the thought of an innocent male….

    • jatrius

      Reducing the quantity of competition for procreation themselves, if they take rivals out of the game?

      • Liz

        Except men don’t sexually avoid promiscuous women. They just mistreat them.

        • transponder

          That still leaves the distinction between ‘wife material’ and ‘just a girl that men forget’ (as some ghastly old song had it).

        • jatrius

          No, they don’t on the whole. That doesn’t mean, however, that our biological behaviours will align with the rationale. As for your second sentence, it’s probably best that I don’t grace it with anything resembling an acceptance of your terms of reference. I simply disagree and recognise that your mind is closed on the issue. Pointless to engage further but I hope you will eventually encounter someone who will give the lie to it in the future.

  • Liz

    Equally depressing as the many and varied ways men find to demean and abuse women, is the fact that there are numerous online and offline publications ready to help them do it. You won’t find many women’s magazines or papers (what are those?) which will invite and accept equivalent material.

    This latest affront is the logical conclusion of a media culture that has been sticking their cameras up famous women’s skirts, down their shirts and into their changing rooms for decades. And the p*rn mags that invite readers to send in photos of their girlfriends and topless women on the beach for them to gawp at without her knowledge or consent.

  • Liz

    “Yet as anyone who has studied the theory or practise of human behaviour can tell you, most ‘slut-shaming’ is done by women, not men, and women usually seek to shame other women who are promiscuous, sexually active or just flirtatious”

    Iranian state media called France’s first lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, a “prostitute” over her support for an Iranian woman who faced death by stoning on an adultery conviction.

    North Korea’s official news agency, the Committee for the Peaceful Unification of Korea (which sounds neither peaceful nor particularly interested in unity) compared South Korean president Park Geun-hye to a dirty comfort woman, a capricious wh*re and a despicable prostitute.

  • Kitty MLB

    Camilla Swifts article elsewhere mentions cads as such.
    But I think generally with the photo with Terry Thomas she was speaking of a different
    type of gentlemanly bounder and of course Computers, Mobiles etc were not around at that time, but older men would say, so was the gentleman.
    Now everything is more base, we now by the treatment of poor Lizzie,
    but I do not understand how women and men ( because men can be victims too)
    can place themselves in such a vulnerable situation, or agree to partake in other situations.

  • Liz

    So what is the name and location of the sociopath who sold and uploaded Vaid’s photos?

    You’re the journalist.

  • Liz

    Rather than shaming the perpetrators, which we certainly should do, we need effective legislation.

    We have an expectation to be able to transfer private digital data without it being stolen and disseminated. What applies to financial data should apply to other private data.

    I can only imagine that this law doesn’t exist yet because our Parliament is 80% male.

  • Liz

    I agree with the thrust of this blog, but…

    “Yet as anyone who has studied the theory or practise of human behaviour can tell you, most ‘slut-shaming’ is done by women, not men, and women usually seek to shame other women who are promiscuous, sexually active or just flirtatious”

    What on earth? What possible justification have you for saying that?!?

    The entire history of shaming and punishing women’s sexuality is a male phenomenon. Victim blaming is the calling card of that cultural phenomenon. Now women have got to take the blame for that too?!? It didn’t exist until men invented the concept of original sin and pinned the blame on the mythical Eve.

    Male p*rnography is a festival of “sl*t-shaming”. It is predicated on the dirtiness of women’s sexuality and the violent response to that. So is sexual violence off camera which is usually excused in the basis that the woman is more or less sexual than men wish her to be.

    Across the world, patriarchal repressive regimes impose sanctions and draconian punishments on women once they reach sexual maturity. We have stonings, live burials, sanctioned gang rapes, acid, a few days ago a man hacked off his wife’s legs.

    In this country historically adulterous women were branded or scarred. Sometimes executed with drowning or burned alive. Nowadays they are referred to by derogatory terms for which there are simply no male equivalents. Sl*t Walks began in response to a police man advising women that if they didn’t want men to mistreat them, then they shouldn’t be sexual, (or sl*ts as he called it).

  • cartimandua

    Yes out the perp because it is as near as rape as one could get without actual rape.

    • Kennybhoy

      F*****G idiot! And that goes for the five clowns who voted you up! 🙁

      • cartimandua

        You think it is normal and acceptable to post naked or sexual pictures of someone without their permission?
        You must be quite dangerous to think it is “OK”.

        • Alexsandr

          yes but its not rape.

          • Kennybhoy

            Indeed and any F*****G idiot who says that it is insults rape victims.

            • Liz

              Revenge p*rn victims describe it as a sexual violation, which is what it is. They suffer extreme emotional distress. More than one has killed herself. I don’t think rape victims will feel as insulted by the comparison as you appear to be.

              • Alexsandr

                but its not rape. just because you call something it isn’t doesn’t mean it is so.
                (Actually I think taking sexually explicit images without the ‘models’ consent should be a serious offence)

                • Liz

                  No it’s not rape. It’s very close to rape.

                  Men helping themselves to a woman’s body with a psychopathic disregard for the effect on her.

                • Bellomy

                  Oh, please. They’re not “helping themselves to their body”. They’re posting a video.

                  This is not “very close to rape”. It’s a totally different crime.

                • Liz

                  It’s not a totally different crime, it’s an extremely similar crime with extremely similar motives.

                • Gwangi

                  Utter drivel, as usual. Posting a nude clip of a nasty ex online is the equivalent of what women do to their ex-husbands all the time. What’s good for the goose…

          • cartimandua

            OOh lets post picture of your intimate body parts on the web and comment on them shall we?
            There was no consent given to show those pictures to the world so it is indeed a version of an assault.

            • Alexsandr

              It is an affront to the victim. but its not rape.

              • cartimandua

                It lives in perpetuity on the Internet rather as rape lives in perpetuity in the victims trauma.
                While the acts being filmed were consensual at the time consent for “sharing” was never given.

                • Alexsandr

                  sorry. you cant rewrite the dictionary just cos it doesn’t fit in with how you want stuff to be
                  Yes putting images on the internet without consent is wrong. But you need a new offence and name for that.

          • Liz

            S/he said it was as near to rape as it was possible to get. What do you think is nearer to rape that isn’t actual rape?

            • Alexsandr

              indecent assult involving actual physical contact. But I have said its a nasty act.

              • Liz

                It’s more than a nasty a to it’s a sexually violating act. I think it would be hard to choose between Indecent assault and being torn to bits by the misogynist internet hoard for all eternity with their constant offers of indecent assault.

            • Gwangi

              Oh dear. All men are the R word with you sisters eh? You utter Dwork!

        • Kennybhoy

          Shame on you!

      • Liz

        What would you term the ritual, sexual humiliation of women by gangs of men against her consent, for sexual and misogynist thrills?

        How about vicarious gang rape?

        • Bellomy

          So, wait. You’re saying that we should all be comparing to a group of men holding this women down against their will and jamming their penises into her vagina repeatedly?

    • Gwangi

      Utter nonsense.
      It is revenge, pure and simple – and MUCH better than a man emailing, Tweeting or texting his ex (she can contact police after 2 emails and claim harassment, and many women entrap men that way for vengeful reasons).
      Not laughing so much now are they, all these women who’ve dumped men? Serves em right.

  • Bellomy

    Malcolm the Cynic here (I have several internet user names) – Imagine my shock to see somebody from the spectator linked to my lowly ten-regular-readers blog!

    In any case, I am not against slut-shaming in principle, and that post was not necessarily ADVOCATING cad-shaming – more like exploring the idea to see if it would be effective.

    If you read onward through my posts, and in the comments section, you’ll notice I come to the conclusion that the best solution is actually just to ignore the cads completely. If we stop acting like they’re relevant or cool (which, by the way, they’re not) we don’t give them social status or power. Robbed of this, they’re sexual attractiveness at least drops and hopefully more good men are considered seriously by women as a result.

    Much thanks for the link!

    • Liz

      You’re not against ritually humiliating one half of a species that depends on sexual reproduction for being sexual?

      Or just too sexual?

      According to the other half. Which boils down to having s*x with somebody other than them.

      Ignoring cads is as likely to work as ignoring other kinds of sociopaths, they take it as a green light. How about this for an alternative: we stop ignoring or excusing or expecting men’s appalling behaviour towards women and start dealing with it properly?

      • Gwangi

        Or how about we just lock women like you up or at least stop you reproducing or having any contact at all with male children?

  • Cooper1992

    The real question is: Will UKIP put down roots so that they will be around in 10 years time? Will UKIP hold onto their support? Will UKIP hold onto their 35,000 members?

    I believe they can and will.

    • CharlietheChump

      TBA

    • Kennybhoy

      Good question. No’so sure yet about the answer tho…

  • jatrius

    Then again, why compromise yourself in the first place? Must you really have to film and photograph yourself engaging in every activity?

    • La Fold

      Yes, yes you must!
      You were obviously not there if you do not have 400 odd photos and spend the majoirty of any event no matter how insignificant watching it through your mobile phone.

    • Liz

      Because it’s fun and sexy?

      • oldestel

        Call me obsessive, but taking pictures was the last thing on my mind.
        Still true actually.

        • Kitty MLB

          what was on your mind was, who the devil is that woman.
          Hope I haven’t offended you recently, just a uncomplicated,
          harmless, obscure soul , sent here to befuddle mortal man.
          And really, by the look of those twats in the photo its not difficult. No idea why God created Man first.

          • oldestel

            Kitty, I always ask a girl her name first. Do you take me for a barbarian?
            Not offended – merely pondering..

            • Kitty MLB

              No one gets my humour. You’re clearly a gentleman in the David Niven vein.There was a
              film once forgot its name where a man had
              too much to drink once and woke up one
              Morning to find a strange women sleeping
              next to him only to find that whilst drunk
              they went off to Vegas and married.

              • oldestel

                Was the woman Sophia Loren?

                • Kitty MLB

                  Better answer this before eschewing this Dante’s inferno.
                  It may have been. I do like those old 50s films (and earlier)
                  Such as Roman Holiday with Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn. I have a very strong resemblance to her, its quite funny when people stop you in the street and ask if they know you- because they think you look familiar.
                  I shall find out if my mystery film stars Sophia Loren, but I didn’t realise she was in films that were outside Europe.

        • Liz

          Not everyone is you?

          • oldestel

            Well, times and generations change I guess, but all the women I’ve ever shared a bed with would, without exception, have thrown an almighty wobbly if I had started snapping them in flagrante..

            • Kitty MLB

              Snapping would be unwise. Especially around the ankles. Those bite marks would take an age to disappear and ladies
              would need to constantly wear trousers. Maybe dinner beforehand is the answer…

            • Liz

              What is your sample size?

              • oldestel

                Modest

                • Liz

                  Have you thought of photo marketing?

                • oldestel

                  Not quite sure what you are suggesting

                • Liz

                  To increase your sample size. Show them what they’re missing?

                • oldestel

                  Liz,
                  I am content with my sample size – A man’s gotta know his limitations.

                • Liz

                  Disappointing.

                • oldestel

                  Disappointment is a price you pay for being human.
                  Remember though: One good lover and a brace of martinis is all that any of us need aspire to (unless we want to get wrecked).
                  Good luck.

                • transponder

                  Well that’s me sunk, then. %^0

                • oldestel

                  Why is that??

                • transponder

                  None of the above. Just me and my Cava and the dog. And ties of affection, but it’s not quite the same thing.

                • oldestel

                  Didn’t reply at the time – sorry, but you caught me off guard when i was being a little flippant (not entirely so!). The lover and the martinis are just means to an end I guess and if you have found other ways to achieve contentment in life then be thankful: Ties of affection should not be dismissed lightly.

                • transponder

                  That’s right. Also I’m building my personal power (art, muscles, tautness) and I feel so much better as a result. No one can tell me I can’t be strong, and no gatekeeper can tell me that I can’t make things of beauty. The swank is back! : )

                • oldestel

                  All hail the swank then!

                • transponder

                  Titter. (Raise of Rondel): Here’s to you.

                • oldestel

                  And you too – I’m off to bed now, exams start in the morning and I’m required to be alert and sensible (that doesn’t come naturally)

                • transponder

                  Lucky you to be on exams so early in the year : )

      • Kennybhoy

        Just so I understand this. Filming oneself or allowing someone else to film oneself in the act is “fun and sexy”, but publishing the film is rape?

    • Alexsandr

      As I have said before, with modern kit you may have no idea you are being filmed. Just look at the kit available online for surveillance.

      • Kennybhoy

        Is that not illegal?

        • Alexsandr

          yes, but that wont stop it will it?

  • La Fold

    Thank Christ I was well past the age of daftness by the time of smart phones were on the go.
    But I still maintain that any man caught taking photos on a night out should be at the least shunned by his friends if not beaten to a pulp with his own shoes.

Close
Can't find your Web ID? Click here