• Thu, Feb 3 2011

New York Magazine Publishes Faux-Kiddie Porn

New York Magazine has an interesting article this week about online porn and its affect on adolescents. In it, writer Alex Morris explores the ways that porn has changed how kids relate to and understand sex.

In a welcome twist on this topic, Morris doesn’t come down with overwrought, heavy-handed morality. Instead, she acknowledges the kids’ concerns, and points to the new sexual horizon that they’re are navigating, what with 24/7 access to every kind of sex imaginable.

Unfortunately, the magazine’s editors decided to completely discredit whatever good might have come from it by putting a picture of a girl who’s supposed to look about 12* seductively removing her top on their cover, under the headline, “Porn and Junior High Culture.”

Maybe, editors of New York Magazine, you were trying to be edgy, or to make a point about how easily young girls can be sexualized (thanks for that breaking news). But I’m sorry to say that it doesn’t quite work that way. You’re either making kiddie porn (which you shouldn’t be), or you’re analyzing it – but you can’t do both and call yourself objective.

By featuring this image, the cover essentially condones New York Magazine’s adult readership sexualizing middle school kids.

But perhaps more disturbing is that the extremely mixed message to the kids who were interviewed for this article (you know…the people we’re all so concerned about):

“Hey, we’re going to step in here as adults and try to help you navigate these confusing waters of porn and sex…just as soon as we finish jerking off to this picture of a girl who looks like you.

Now, what were you saying about being objectified?”

*In the article, the magazine makes sure to note that all models, who were posed to look like they were in middle school, are over the age of 18.

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  • Scavengergirl

    I think part of the point of the photos was to shock the parents and adults into paying attention to what their children might be seeing and putting out there online. I don’t know if it was effective or not.