Girls Gone Wild or Forced into Insanity?

Girls Gone Wild host and creator Joe Francis remains at large after being found in contempt of court during his trial in which, according to the LA Times, “seven women, filmed on a Florida beach in 2003, say they were “victimized” by Francis’ crew by being put in explicit scenes.”

There is no question about the success this man has had getting young girls (all of age, he insists) to either make out with their friends, flash their boobs, or do something else sexual in order to become the proud owner of a T-shirt or a hat. Then, he turns around and sells those images turning a multi-million dollar profit.

Some say it’s genius. Some say it’s exploitation. But in a powerful story, also previously published in the LA Times by Claire Hoffman, states that the Internet has had an impact on these girls and their willingness to expose so much for so little: “Francis has aimed his cameras at a generation whose notions of privacy and sexuality are different from any other. Nursed on MySpace profiles and reality television, many young people today are comfortable with being perpetually photographed and having those images posted on the Internet for anyone to see. The boundaries that once contained sexuality have also fallen away. Whether it’s 13-year-olds watching a Britney Spears video, 16-year-olds getting their pubic hair waxed to emulate porn stars or 17-year-olds viewing videos of celebrities performing the most intimate acts, youth culture is soaked in sexuality.”

Other girls have tried to sue Francis for sexual exploitation. At least one claims he raped her and tells her story in Hoffman’s article. Most of these women have received no justice through the court system or anywhere else.

Still think we can shy away from the role the Internet plays in the sexualization of our youth?

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One thought on “Girls Gone Wild or Forced into Insanity?

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