With the revealing of the Duke Porn Star, the idea of privacy for porn stars has been a hotly debated issue. Can porn stars who have sex which is video taped for mass consumption expect privacy? It brings up the whole debate about whether or not people who are in the public eye have the right to privacy.
For us, it’s a moot issue. Whatever people do publicly, the things that they do not reveal or do not wish to be public, shouldn’t be public. There are people who take a perverse shame in outing those who are on the fringes of what mainstream society would call acceptable sexual practices. The hypocrisy in these instances is plain. People degrade porn stars, but statistic shows that an enormous percentage of the population consumes porn.
The same issues and hypocrisy come up when it comes to adultery. So many people cheat or wish to cheat, and yet we can turn those who cheat into a public witch hunt. On a smaller scale, close friends and shared acquaintances wonder how someone could stoop so low, easily tossing around judgments without knowing much more about a person than one thing that they’ve done. On a larger scale, adultery becomes a media frenzy as more tidbits are dragged up.
We’re all very strange when it comes to the topic of sex, aren’t we? It’s widely acknowledged that sex is natural and that wanting sex is natural, but unless it fits within our narrow parameters that we’ve deemed acceptable… We see it as abnormal behaviour.
Adultery and privacy are something that we need to examine again more closely. Some would argue that anyone who commits adultery, deserves no privacy, but as Stoya stated in her article about Privacy and Porn Stars, “maybe we should remember that our first glimpse of a person is just one small piece of who they really are.”
The idea of a inward persona versus an outward one is something which is becoming more institutionalized as time progresses. What we say on social media can damn us and even the things that we don’t put on social media can hurt us. In a cultural landscape like this, it becomes even more important to take measures to protect yourself whether you want to commit adultery or not.
There is a common idea that if a person puts themselves in the public sphere, that we have a right to at least some of their information. What this idea disregards, however, is that most of us are in the public sphere regardless of whether we would want to be. In a world where potential employers will Google your name before hiring you and where social media is potentially a place where you can get fired for speaking your mind… to adopt the idea that if you’re in public, you don’t deserve privacy means that none of us do.
Of course, no one actually thinks that. Whenever there is an uproar over privacy concerns whether they come from the government, your internet service provider, or the websites you frequent, we automatically assume that it is our right to privacy. We deserve our privacy for the personal sphere of our lives unless we choose to share it.
It is only when someone assumes that they have the moral high ground that the uproar fades.
When it comes to adultery or porn, there are few who are willing to carry the standard of equality and fairness.
Privacy for all unless they break the unspoken rules of society!
The greatest irony of this is that if we were to remove the stigma on adultery, it would not be an issue in the least. Adultery is seen as abhorrent by many people simply by the fact that people have to lie about having an affair, yet… if there was no stigma and people were able to be more open about it, they would not need to lie.
So where do you stand on the idea of privacy?
Someone who commits adultery is not only an adulterer. There are many facets to their lives that we cannot see and cannot judge them on. As Stoya wisely said in her article on porn stars, “maybe it would be easier to navigate the dissolving boundaries between public and private spaces if we [had signals for] the aspects of ourselves [which are] currently on display.”
Whether committing adultery, participating in porn, or anything else that involves two consenting and capable adults, privacy is deserved and we should respect that.