I wanted to write something light and funny today but I can’t. When Mr Zuckerman (Mr Facebook) reportedly hands over a billion dollars for Instagram a question springs to mind, that keeps banging around in my head.
This Billion dollars, seems to have been swilling about ready for this single acquisition and it tends to infer money is easy to come by and the business of sharing images and all things connected to social networking is incredibly lucrative.
So isn’t it time the people making a successful business out of this technology finally invested sufficient money to use the technology positively to protect all the people who are abused and exploited through the use of the Internet and if not to stop it, reduce it and increase arrests of criminals involved in this evil trade.
What do I mean? Images, still and moving are so easy to capture and distribute now, it’s equally easy to identify who is uploading downloading and what computers are being used to view images. So if someone is making and distributing illegal images via this or similar technology. They could be identified. More importantly, given the resources it would be possible to trace and rescue children and abused adults.
It’s an accepted part of our culture that we communicate via words and images through the ‘net. And nothing is going to change that. This type of technology (Image sharing) does however document more clearly than ever before the more deviant behaviors that have existed within our communities probably since cavemen days. So I am not suggesting the internet is the cause of horrific corruption of our species. What is evident from numerous investigations into child sexual abuse and the distribution of indecent images of children is that this technology propels the scale of Image capture, distribution and collection into a new, never imagined stratosphere.
So yes investigations are successfully taking place, but they are so time consuming and can be expensive and law enforcement agencies only have a defined budget to tackle them the surface is only being scratched. The reports in the news of the scale of the numbers of indecent images collected by individuals and the number of individuals driving the demand of new and more graphic images of sexual abuse of children is truly horrifying. In my opinion without the new technologies this explosion of demand and supply would not have happened.
Anyone who thinks viewing indecent images of children is not so serious remembers this. The incident really occurs a child is being abused, probably because of the demand for the images and the price being paid for them. Demands include evidence that it is new, dated with current newspapers etc included to show the date. These deviants are proud of their collections and a lot of kudos is attached to obtaining “new releases”. So this drives new abuse, torture and at times murders.
The element of live broadcasts also adds to the horror as “customers” become directors of the abuse. This abuse may happen abroad in some third world country, so it may not be “our “children, believe me some people think that makes a difference. But because of technology and the sheer vulnerability of children this could be happening in a house, a flat, a room near you. These children are real they suffer and are controlled and are not necessarily locked in a dungeon in Indonesia. They might be that quiet little girl who misses school a lot. Or that cheeky kid who is nothing but trouble and runs away from home.
So while this is a billion dollar acquisition I want to know what level of money the industry will contribute to the fight against this awful trade and tackle this huge and growing betrayal of innocence.