Saturday, February 16, 2008

Its A Dog's World!

A million reasons why you should never post your picture on the web, especially on sites such as orkut or facebook, unless you have locked them from public viewing! This probably includes even matrimonial sites and also emailing photographs to people you are not really familiar with. There are frustrated psychopaths who seem to be bent on collecting pictures of women and pooling them on sites, some of which are extremelty obscene and others that are titled like "Desi girls .." and "Beautiful..Non-nude Gals!". And I am talking about pictures of girls and women picked from their personal albums, school albums, family photos, friends, etc.

Today it could be a random face, tomorrow it could be your friend or relative!

I dont know if the authorities are incapacitated enough not to intervene and raid server locations where these pictures are hosted, even if they are outside India or within. I hope someone who has both sense and power (a rare combination I suppose!) is reading this and has the courage and ability to do something.

I think privacy is something we all take too lightly, especially in Kerala where we are least bothered about respecting someone else's privacy!. Although this message is not really about Kerala, but rather its because I got really angry seeing such pics. The link to one such site was sent to me by a friend, whose colleague's pictures were put on the site - the picture was taken from her personal online album. They are trying to contact authorities regarding this, but none seem interested to do anything concrete. Most of the related sites on these domains are pornographic and disgusting.

I think this also underscores the fact that we really have no sense of respect or concern for our women. I have to point out that this is true especially of men in Kerala, where a lot of instances and events point to the fact that women are being treated more as objects rather than human beings, and a large section of the population thrives on scandals and gossips, which in turn feed this sort of deplorable perversions. Disgusting as it is, posting these pictures of innocent girls and women on these sites takes ourselves to new lows!

Pray someone can do something about this!

P.S. Initially I posted the links to some of these sites, but on second thought I decided to remove these, since it would mean more publicity to the pics of these innocent victims. But if you are someone who can do something about this whole scam, please post a comment and I will contact you and give you the details of these sites


Spice Boy said...

I am not supporting such sites, but I have a different view to it. When girls walk in public places, boys/men pass comments. Some do it in private and some do it in public. Public comments are rude, but about private comments, nothing much can be done, and I guess thats ok. We can look at a girl in a normal way and a very 'sexual' way. Depends on the person looking at it. But can we say that girls should stop appearing in public places cos its causing men to pass comments ? This is not Taliban.

silverine said...

This is like piracy in the porn trade. This has happened to a gal blogger too and apparently Google did nothing to remove the offending Profile from Orkut. So there is no hope unless they post morphed pictures of some regional historical icon or woman minister . I myself do not have a single snap online because I had heard of this menace long time back. I hope this posts serves as a warning to women.

MC said...

@ spice boy - i am talking about "private" photographs being STOLEN and put in public - add to it the fact that these are semi-porn and porn sites.

you ARE supporting such sites by taking it so casually. i dont know how you can say its okay for men to pass comments (private or public) on women. how can private comments be OK and public comments be rude? it doesnt make any difference to the girl who listens to it!

well i hope the women-folk can make better sense of this post and stop posting pics in public domain.

if anyone saw these sites, they would be ALARMED!

@ silverine - very true. its terrible! i think half the people, especially the newbies on cyberspace, remain ignorant about these great risks. hope more people become aware of this.

Spice Boy said...

Private comments as in private comments. Not the ones loud enough to make the girl hear it. Every body does it and Im sure even the people commenting here has atleast once said... wow the girl is sexy. Im not saying that we should or should not comment. Im just saying that we cannot ask people to stay inside their house or wear a pardha just because men might think they are hot.

Anonymous said...

Right on,MC! This is truly alarming and absolutely preposterous.I hope no one takes this issue so casually as it does matter to the 78,000 odd girls,women who have been featured without their knowledge on that website. It's criminal and needs to be stopped immediately. What if one's own mother,sister,wife were to be featured in such a site without one knowing? Would that be ok?
Now this is something that should not be chewed upon and left to rest but immediate action is sought by someone who can do something about it.
Am sending a shout to all my women friends out there.Thanks for bringing this to light.


silverine said...

p.s this is what I meant by "Orkut Billionaires" in my post "Whatay Monday". And I am also sending out a mail to everyone about this.

Spice Boy said...

This post comes at the right time. browse orkut profiles and I look at photos also if they are available. 2 days back I found a "dont peep into my album" kind of image in one of the profiles. Sadistic.... thats what I think of those people. And here is the irony. She is a model....and has got pics of her all over internet.

PS- Im not promoting circulating pics.

MC said...

@ spice boy - okay lets try to make it a bit simpler..

guy sees pictures of a girl on her personal album or orkut or facebook or on some matrimonial site, and he says to himself "so cute" or even "hot"..

so far so good.

but what if he goes on to copy the pics, and uploads it on a public forum that borders around pornography or semi-porn? we definitely have a problem, and we cannot equate it to what you are saying.

again, why do you think anyone here is trying to say that "women should stay inside" or women should change?? why are you not suggesting that these men should be changing?? women certainly have their freedom, like men, and i dont think these innocent girls and women are at fault here. its quite obviously a frustrated lot of men.

@ anonymous - exactly! if someone wants porn, let them do it their way and there are 1000s of sites available for that. but putting pics of these innocent women is deplorable and needs urgent attention! i hope the men who read this will ask the question you have asked - what if their wife's or sister's pics come up on these sites?

@ silverine - when i read your post, i wanted to put a detailed comment, but then got caught up with things. then yesterday i came across these sites and was alarmed to see pictures of girls from their graduation days, women caught on mobile phones at stores, women bathing at temple ponds, profile pics from social networking sites, family album pics etc put up! this is the heights!

i hope all women get to understand these lurking dangers fully well before posting pics online or emailing pics to random people.

@ spice boy - i really didnt understand what you said here. but i doubt there is any justification to such acts..

raj said...

I personally dont think this is that serious issue to discuss, and i dont expect to see such articles on this blog page. Ppl posting pics on internet should be made AWARE of such consequences and posting the pics shud be ones own choice.yday-today-tomorrow!

MC said...

@ raj - i am sorry..i just couldnt help was an urge..what was i thinking!

err..i think these posts are meant to create AWAREness..

Manoj said...

@raj: Personally even I dont think that many things is that serious issue to discuss, but then that is my opinion. I dont go around pushing it down other peoples throat. The blog owner cannot give heed to every personal opinion. He has to make his judgment as to what is wrong and what is right in the larger interest of the blog readers. So quite peddling your "personal" opinion.

MC said...

@ manoj - thank you for the very objective take on things..

but on a larger perspective, the fact that a lot of (if not most) men do not find it a "big issue" by itself underscores the seriousness of the state of affairs for women.

if you looked at these sites, the faces of men in any of these photos are blurred while only the womens faces are conveniently left public.

when i did this post, i hoped there will be some great response and some kind of major community/social action being recommended against these sites. but i can see how apathetic we can be to such serious issues.

i guess it goes on to prove how we dont care about a lot of things, however unjust or cruel, until it happens to ourselves. and in most cases, we go to the extreme of deriving pleasure at someone else's expense. these sites and the insensitivity towards such acts are classical examples of this.

its utterly disappointing, but i hope social networking sites will add more privacy features, and youngsters, and new internet users, need to be made more aware of securing their privacy online at all costs.

Spice Boy said...

I think you must have heard of a racket in cochin which pays for mobile photos of girls. Now what are you going to do about them ?
Send message to all saying that ban mobiles phones ? Or send a message to all saying that dont go out in public, there are people waiting to photograph you. or wear a prdhah when you go out ?

Its all a feeling we have in our mind. Its like stupid religious sentiments than gets hurt very often. I will feel bad if someone posted a pic of mine there. But ultimately its just a feeling.

Look at the positive side of things if we set aside that feeling. We can share with our family, our friends. Ofcourse there is a chance of the photograph being misused. Then again we all submit photos to matrimonial sites. Those also can be misused.

MC said...

@ spice boy - well..when you walk around with your girlfriend/sister/mother and someone comes with a mobile phone and clicks a picture of her, what are you gonna do? i am sure it will be something more than going back home and telling her to wear a parda or asking her not to go out again. or are you just going to say to yourself and to her, "oh its just a feeling".

Spice Boy said...

Fortunately I dont have any sisters and unfortunately any girl friends.

If something like that happens to me, Ill feel very bad. But Im not sure if anything can be done against being photographed at a public place, other than a fight.

I once had to go to a police station just because someone thought I took a photo of a girl in a public place. Fortunately the girl identified the real culprit and I was saved. Believe me, its not a good experience either.

MC said...

@ spice boy - yes, obviously we would fight or react strongly if someone did that to our family.

and although its sad that you had to enter the station for that incident, i am very glad the girl was bold enough to react and take some action. kudos to her!

Spice Boy said...

Id agree thats its the real spirit. Not using orkut or not uploading pics is not the real spirit.

MC said...

@ spice boy - i am glad we finally managed to agree on that at least! :)

raj said...

mc: i think these posts are meant to create AWAREness..
I appreciate it. But it had nothing to do with Kerala or its people in particular, it was a general article.

"A million reasons why you should never post your picture on the web, especially on sites such as orkut or facebook, unless you have locked them from public viewing!" - even a PC isnt such a personal thing, how can internet or locking from public viewing be ?

manoj : He has to make his judgment as to what is wrong and what is right in the larger interest of the blog readers.

ohya he can do that, if he wants to be a socially acceptable person infact he should do it. But he wont get any better, as a person.

mc : but on a larger perspective, the fact that a lot of (if not most) men do not find it a "big issue" by itself underscores the seriousness of the state of affairs for women.
I disagree, just because more men think of the state of affairs of women more seriously will not change the actual state of affairs of women.

the strength of the weakest link is the true strength of a chain, being aware and bypassing is the only way to get stronger.

Manoj said...

"But he wont get any better, as a person"

MC... I think you should put a disclaimer that you are not against Porn but against stolen photography ha ha!!!

scorpiogenius said...

Thia has become an alarming menace! Even more frustrating to see the authorities looking east on this issue.

Our Cyber Cell division were quick to jump upon the sinister fraud profile and community in Orkut defaming the lady SFI leader. But what about the thousands of innocent young ladies whose identities are stolen and used for such obscure sites. The Cyber Cell has busted a couple of anti social elements who carried on such immoral activities, but it is just a point on the tip of the iceberg.

But in this world of improving technology, the more powerful zoom cameras are violating deeper into people's personal space. The laws and restrictions are turning out to be mere farces...

Spice Boy said...

Does anyone know about laws regarding photography in public places ?

worldcitizen said...

I think the bigger issue is how society in general looks at women. I am a mallu who grew up in north India but did my professional studies in kerala and later went to work in Gujarat. Now I'm in the US. I found that nowhere in all these places do people disrespect their women as they do in Kerala; which is very surprising considering the fact that it has the highest literacy( not education!!) among both men and women and where women can be found doing all kinds of "male bastion" jobs in public and private offices, as postwoman, at petrol pumps etc. But men still haven't figured out a way to treat them as colleagues, friends and "comrades." As someone said- they treat them as mere objects of sexual satisfaction. While in Kerala I was amazed when my female friends in colleges would narrate tales of how they would carry pins with them on buses and trains to thwart any unwanted "advancing hand and fingers" to their own selves. At the same time I have heard numerous proud stories from my male friends who grew up in Kerala about their "adventures" and "accomplishments" during their long bus and train rides.And then there were the "exhibitionist" who wait at "strategic points" to reveal it all- some of them so blatant that one wonders why they do it and how that can provide any fun. But I realized that this is something that in intrinsic to Kerala's male culture- not taught at home but at street corners where men and boys meet while growing up.I don't mean to say that this is something unique to kerala ( although the methods employed are!!)but whats unique is the fact that the traditional kerala society has not found a way to incorporate "pressure release mechanism" for the natural biological sexual urges and feeling of youth, into their culture. Boys and girls are not encouraged to bond with one another from a young age. Both sexes should be allowed to vent their sexual energies adequately.Especially in their teen years when the hormones start kicking,they should be allowed to develop their curiosity of the opposite sex in a healthy way. Every culture has it. In gujarat they have the garbha - where men and women, boys and girls of all ages dance together many nights in a year, Punjab has its "lodi". In the West they have the proms and other such events when boys and girls can get to know each other in a socially acceptable manner. This not only helps vent their sexual energies but also helps develop respect for the opposite sex especially among boys. I have been to many parts of India- but I have found Gujarati's are the most respectful of their women folk and I'm not surprised. Here in America men who are discourteous and show disrespect to women are pariah!They are taught from very young age that chivalry includes respect to and care of women. But so many times I have seen and heard of stories when men in Kerala either stood silent or supported men who have been disrespectful of women in public.Every change begins at home. So unless parents and schools start to understand this and become pro-active in teaching their boys the right attitudes and values kerala society would continue to treat these stories as that- mere stories!

Biju said...

I support this blog 100%. There are perverts doing these uncultured nonsense for god knows...what pleasure...only they know of... Maybe they would only realize when their kin is caught in a similar website.

I do not understand why is this post here? I mean, this is not something confined to people of Kerala. I totally disagree on that.

This is however a social problem which is not easy to tackle.

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