Today in Double Standards

two women talking, one is saying *I used to think I was a slut, then I realised I was acting like a man*

One of today’s more tabloidesque headlines is Facebook Teen Vows to Publish More AFL Nude Pics. In short — a 17 year old girl has published nude pictures of an AFL star (and a partially clothed team-mate) to Facebook. She says that she took the pictures herself, in Melbourne, with the knowledge of the two men (although they did not consent to the images being distributed). They say the pictures were taken last year in Miami, by a fellow team-mate, and that the girl obtained the pictures from another party altogether.

Let us assume for a moment that the Football players’ story is true. (I’m not saying that it IS true — I have no way of knowing which version of events is accurate; this is just a thought experiment.) Isn’t it interesting, that in this particular instance, the blame seems to be directed at the person who is distributing these photos when they shouldn’t be, rather than at the people who actually posed for the photograph? There are no platitudes about how careful men need to be, or about how they need to be educated about the consequences of their actions. Instead, there are orders from a Federal Court Judge, directed at the girl, prohibiting the release of more photos.

Yet, what happens to women and girls when intimate photos of them are distributed without permission? They are slut-shamed by government campaigns. They are told that they are responsible for the actions of others–while those others are not held culpable in any way. They are told that the problem lies in posing for the photographs in the first place–rather than in the people who distribute those photographs without their consent.

Categories: gender & feminism, media, social justice

Tags: , , ,

10 replies

  1. I do remember Brendan Fevola coping it from the media for his role in a similar incident.

  2. The double standards the media are displaying in this case are nothing short of maddening – the ‘poor little footballers’ are being made out to be victims, and their photographs (the few times they have been reproduced in the media) are pixelated to obscure details. I certainly don’t recall the same respect being shown to Laura Bingle…

  3. Damn, I meant Lara Bingle – that will teach me to fire off a comment in the heat of the moment without taking time to spellcheck details.

  4. There are no platitudes about how careful men need to be, or about how they need to be educated about the consequences of their actions.
    THANK you. God, this has been driving me up the wall.

  5. What Brendan Fevola copped was nothing compared to what was spat at Laura Lara Bingle for a photo in which she was clearly not consenting to the photo being taken.
    Well said Beppie.

  6. I would normally agree. In this instance though I think the factor to blame for the hypocrisy and double standard is ‘fame’ and not gender. Many women, ahem, many ‘famous’ women, have been able to stop photos from their past going public and newspapers and individuals have been successfully (like in this instance with the footballers) stopped or reprimanded by the legal system for publishing/distributing intimate images. Of course, sometimes being shamed is good for your image, business and or publicity.
    Footballers in Australia, Victoria particularly, have a history of being above the law (

  7. Surely everyone’s placed themselves in situation where they can be photographed naked by a teenage girl?
    Oh wait. Sorry, I can’t think of a single circumstance where that’s happened.
    I also love how the the burden of adult responsibility is being placed on 17-year old girl, not the grown men involved.
    Also, does the slow release of embarrassing information not have echoes of a certain recent news event? “Weenieleaks” tee hee hee…

  8. Well, let that be a lesson to them! Drunk in the vicinity of a camera? Deserve everything they get. Surely they knew any photo of them, desirable footballers for goodness’ sake, would be published in the end. It’s not like they were going to swap them for a milo!
    (Did I mix my metaphors too much?)

  9. Another point of interest; typing ‘Lara Bingle shower’ into google will bring up a wealth of images of a woman who clearly does not want to be photographed, whereas finding even a crudely censored photograph of the (posing) men was quite difficult even through social networking sites.

  10. Here’s another article on the issue which is all about how this terrible vengeful teenager is going around ruining the lives of these poor innocent football players.
    If only boys at fault in the sexting issue were treated in the same way!

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