By: Cate Talaue (@talu3who)
From a very generic standpoint, we are all the same. We eat, work, socialize, and we even shower… naked! There, I said it. We are naked beings. We were born naked, some of us sleep naked, heck even Adam and Eve flaunted their naked stuff in the Garden of Eden. It doesn’t sound so shameful when I put it that way now, does it? But when the celebrity gossip outlets are having a particularly slow day in the office, out comes the oh-so-scandalous headline: “Celebrity Nudes Leaked.”
During the Labor Day long weekend, over 100 celebrities including Oscar-winner Jennifer Lawrence, model/actress Kate Upton, and Olympian McKayla Maroney’s privacy were compromised after a hacker gained access to their accounts and leaked photos of their nude bodies. This scandal became the highlight of weekend Internet news so much so that they established a name for the scandal: “The Fappening.”
According to a statement given by Apple, this particular case was targeted but is not a result of any breach within Apple’s systems including iCloud and Find my iPhone. In other words, what we have on our hands is a very determined individual with a certain flair and expertise in obtaining personal items. While Lawrence, Upton, and Maroney are not the first victims of such a scandal, and certainly will not be the last, the concern in all of these events is quite prevalent.
First of all, let’s take note of the fact that earlier in this article, I deliberately said “Celebrity Nudes Leaked.” That’s because most, if not all, online articles labelled this scandal as such but interestingly enough, the Hollywood hotties that they cited as victims, are all female. Though it is rare that male nudes become the highlight of social media shares and retweets, their photos do surface on the Web from time to time (ahem, Dylan Sprouse).
For me that raised the question: “why they even bothered to be non-gender specific in this scandal when only the females have been headlining our news feeds?” It’s like these media outlets tried, but failed, to be feminist by being vague and generic. The concern here is that these ladies are receiving specific attention out of a larger group of both male and female celebrities, whose photos were widely circulated, receiving more backlash than I feel the males would have endured.
There were some who sympathized with J.Law for example, but then there were others such as British comedian Ricky Gervais who took to Twitter all-too-quickly to post his opinion, “Celebrities, make it harder for hackers to get nude pics of you from your computer by not putting nude pics of yourself on your computer” (GossipCop). What Gervais had to say about this scandal sounded all too familiar, perhaps you’ve heard it before: “If you don’t want to get raped/sexually harassed, don’t dress like a _______”. You can fill in the blank.
Sure, his initial statement is logical. Don’t do something unless you’re willing to suffer the consequences, but who would have known that their supposedly secure personal files would be distributed for millions to see? And though I’m tempted to say that we’re all human, we make mistakes, and we should own up to them, I do not believe that these female celebrities are at all at fault.
Since when was it acceptable to look down upon women who express love for their bodies? Their method in this case is unorthodox but it’s a form of expression, to say the least. Who decided that the female body was the sole property of the male gaze and what’s their contact information so that every woman in the world can ensure that this individual gets their share of humiliation, why can’t we stop oppressing women and start genuinely encouraging them to embrace their womanhood instead using the clichéd “haters gonna hate?”
We all reserve the right to have ownership over our bodies, but then why are women criticized for doing so? Sprouse’s nudes went viral for a day and then the online world moved on. It’s been a week and these females’ photos are continuing to be shared. I say that we embody the fact that “we woke up like this, we flawless, we look so good tonight”, oh wait… Beyoncé said that.