Issues of consent

I find this worrying.

I mean, it’s always good when someone avoids being charged for a crime they didn’t commit. But the secret filming aspect left a nasty taste in my mouth. I have no problems with people filming themselves having sex; have at it, everyone, do whatever gets you going – as long as all the people involved have consented.

It makes me wonder about the thought process of someone who does something like this; why they don’t seem to respect that something personal and intimate is really not enough of a big deal that the other person involved should know about it or anything silly like that. Of course, possibly the real motivation is some sort of ‘getting off on knowing the other person doesn’t know’ thing, which is still, of course, very problematic. Either way, it seems to be the case that boundaries just don’t exist, or don’t matter. And it says a lot that a guy can feel like it’s ok for him to just do what he wants (tape himself and the woman) without knowing or caring how she might feel about it.

I’m also curious to know whether or not this was the only time he has done something like this. After all, secretly filming someone is, by definition, secret, and the people being filmed aren’t aware it is being done; so who would know if this is the first and only time? It seems like a kind of boundary-crossing, illegal behaviour that comes from a problematic thought process ; and, either not knowing it is wrong, not caring, or thinking one will never be caught are all motivations that could easily lead to repeatedly performing this behaviour.

I find the tone of this article problematic; apparently he must have shown regret and remorse and shown to police he had learned a lesson to be granted diversion. But why the hell does someone feel they are entitled to do something like this in the first place?? I have no intention of tarring all men with the same brush and saying why do men think they are allowed to do this sort of thing. But there are definitely men out there who, when it comes to sex, seem to have a great sense of entitlement. I am very glad his name had been published, and put out there for everyone to see.

On a lighter note, this kind of story would be a great scare tactic for anti-sex conservatives to use: don’t go home with a guy and have dirty, dirty casual sex, because he is probably secretly filming you!

6 Comments

  1. Boganette says:

    I felt uncomfortable reading that article. I too wondered at the motivation of filming someone without their consent. I was surprised that he was only granted diversion.

    I immediately thought that this must be so traumatic for the woman involved. Regardless of the rape charges being dropped – she felt that she’d been violated. And after such a violation she has to deal with the fact that that violation was filmed – and watched by police officers (and anyone else the guy felt like showing it to). I thought the comments by the Sexual Abuse Help spokeswoman was important – even if the ‘situation’ didn’t fit a ‘criminal definition’ the woman involved was still likely left with feelings of being abused.

    And as an aside – I did totally wonder if I’ve ever been filmed. It’s a creepy thought.

  2. steph says:

    Exactly; the thing about a video is that once it is created, it’s out there, and who knows who could end up seeing it.

    And, sadly, I did also wonder the same thing as you; have I ever been filmed? I mean, it says a lot about the state of things that after reading that my mind can leap to wondering about that. Are women aways supposed to be paranoid that guys are sleazes and secretly taping them? I trust that most men are good guys and wouldn’t do that kind of thing, but hearing about one guy doing it opens the door for paranoia a bit.

  3. Lanark Castle says:

    You’re right, him being granted diversion is a travesty. We need much harsher penalties for sexual offenders to send a clear message that objectification of women’s bodies is not acceptable in New Zealand.

  4. Stacey McBagel says:

    It’s a little more worrying to me that some guy was accused of rape, a much harsher crime than filming someone, and was potentially going to be sent to prison if he hadn’t done this. Sure what he did was sick and wrong, but jail for years for a false accusation of rape along with the certain reputation ruin that would’ve come along with it is far worse. Why is he not allowed to flip the case around so it is pointed out that she falsely accused him of a terrible, violent crime? He may have filmed her, but she falsely accused someone of rape.

    • Katy says:

      It’s up to the police to file rape charges. They obviously felt that at first there was enough evidence to think this woman had been raped. You don’t know if she accused him of rape. It is much more likely that police decided that a woman who could not remember what had happened the night before, and had physical evidence that showed intercourse of some sort had occured was likely the victim of rape. The police did their job – they did an investigation. If the woman had accused the man of rape out of malicious intent she would likely have been charged with laying a false complaint. She hasn’t been charged.

  5. steph says:

    To be fair, the article doesn’t actually specify who claimed what, or what exactly led to him possibly facing rape charges:

    ” It is understood police began an investigation after a member of the public found a woman wandering along The Terrace one morning in May.The woman, aged in her 40s, claims to have little memory of the night before but officers traced her back to Gardiner’s nearby home. ”

    So I think the claim that she falsely accused him of rape is speculation; it may well be true, but we don’t actually know based on what was written in the article.

    Naturally, I don’t have any desire for someone to be convicted of a crime they didn’t commit. But my post wasn’t intended to say ‘oh man, look at this guy, sucks he didn’t get charged with rape’, but rather I was thinking more about the idea that some people do things like secretly film others without consent, and wondering about the thought process and motivations behind that.