Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Careless Whispers (aka Hayden Cameras and the Internet)

I inadvertedly went on a blog holiday without notice and I for that, I apologize. My computer was on the fritz and I went on vacation. I have drafts of blogs but was not able to publish them. So, in the next weeks, I would release them one at a time.

A lot has happened in the past month, to me (been to Boracay), to the people around me (lay-offs and resignations), to fellow bloggers (break ups and people leaving the country) and to society (American Idol, ConAss). Nothing can surpass though the controversy that grips everyone's attention than the talk about Hayden Kho's personal videos.

Hayden and his hidden camera. What's the big fuss? People have kept diaries of their exploits, black books. Some have naked pictures of themselves or of people they have slept with. What's the difference? These are private, for one's own consumption. Hayden never meant for it to be public. He did not have those videos in order the public to see his private parts and its performance. Yes, there are those who would find it a thrill to have their nakedness all over the net or bluetoothed from phone to phone. Some are paid to perform in front of the camera. In this case, the videos taken were for his own library, maybe view them once in a while when he is all alone with no one to help him with his libido. Maybe to him it is also some sort of trophy room of the conquests he had. Is it a crime to keep such? I don't think so. Is it a sickness? I don't think so. We all have our own idiosyncricies, things we do or collect that others may find weird. In Hayden's case, what made it a scandal is it involves a familiar personality and that media is blowing it out of proportion.

With the senate joining the band wagon, media mileage for the people involved is assured. What's the point why they have these hearings? Obviously not to prosecute. They claim that it aids legislation. From what they are saying, it would be a criminal act taking pictures or videos of people without their consent. Really? That would be the day. So, we won't be seeing news reports and pictures in our magazines, newspapers and on television now. Surveillance cameras should also be prohibited unless everyone being filmed consents to being monitored. For me, these senators are merely grandstanding, exploiting the limelight so that they shine and are fresh on everyone's mind when the 2010 election rolls in. Tell me. What legislation has the senate pass with all the high profile hearings they have done? And if ever they did pass such legislation, did these hearings make an impact on the law and are we seeing and feeling these laws changing society?

Why are we making a bigger fuss than we should? Just because these are known individuals. Are we alarmed because our sisters, cousins, children, friends or others we may know may be placed in a similar position? I believe what we should be angry with is not Hayden taking personal videos but the people who spread it. These people are heartless. Would they be spreading these if their own family were put to shame with their distribution? If these were criminal acts, why not? Expose them for the world to see but these are private moments and not some pornographic material. One can sympathize with Katrina Halili in this area since these are unguarded moments. And as she stated on her opening statement in the Senate, these videos will live on beyond her acting career and her existence.

Unfortunately, the fault of Katrina's compromising position is her own. I agree there wouldn't be an issue if there wasn't any video but there wouldn't be a video that people would be curious about if there weren't any people involved that were in the video. If they were unknowns, if they were Inday and Dodong, the neighbor's maid and driver, this would not be a hot topic. It would not be news-worthy. Hayden and Dr. Vicky Belo's relationship is a public relationship. You mean, everyone else knew they were an item all except poor little Katrina? She knew what she was getting into. He may not be married but it was public knowledge that he and Vicky were an item. Whether there was drugs involved or not, I believe that is a moot point. She had consented on being on video on her underwear with Hayden singing the now immortal "Careless Whisper." What an appropriate song.

To parrot Boy Abunda, what learnings do we get from the scandal? For me, the primary lesson is: if you know that a person has a partner, don't get involved. Second, ensure private files are stored where no one can retrieve it but yourself.

That's my two cents. Til next time.

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