With the easy access to technology now people are able to access an enormous quantity of information faster and easier. The information available gives to society the opportunity to do and learn how to engage in legal and illegal activities. When people use the Internet, computers or related technology to engage in illegal activities, (such as deviant cyberacts and public order cybercrimes), they are committing cybercrimes. Today, criminologists are figuring out why people engage in such cybercrimes. Feminism criminology is a theory that best fits in explaining the reason why people engage in deviant cyberacts and public order cybercrimes presented in a documentary.
The text would first describe a film and then it would explain how the theory fits the cybercrimes presented in the film. Film Description”Pornocracy: the new sex multinationals” is a documentary directed by Ovidie. Ovidie was a porn actress between 1999 and 2003, but currently, she is an ex-porn actress and director. The documentary takes place worldwide, specifically in parts of Germany, Hungary, Czech Republic, United States, Canada, and Romania. The main purpose of the documentary is to show the drastic change in the business of pornography as result from the Internet. It shows how the easy access to free pornography through the Internet destroyed the traditional way of working in that field, and how today almost all the websites worldwide with adult content are controlled by a large corporation. The film is divided into four chapters.
In the first chapter, which subtitle is “The Prey”, focuses on the impact that “tubes” (which are the free streaming sites on the Internet) had on the pornographic industries making traditional industries to close and actresses to conduct more aggressive content. The second chapter called “The Predators” is about how all begin and how the “tubes” start to get bigger. In this part, Ovidie shows that all started when Fabian Thylmann bought a website with adult content (YouPorn) from J-T (the founder of YouPorn).
After that, Fabian Thylmann started buying all the biggest productions and websites with adult content. In a short period of time, he created his empire of Manwin and extended his monopoly into the United States. In the third chapter called “The Octopus” Ovidie shows the power that has Manwin, which then became Mindgeek. Olvide illustrates that Mindgeek is distributed around the world to evade taxes, and that based on evidence the main work of Mindgeek is not adult content, instead is money laundering. But, all is under control of a mysterious owner that anybody knows who he/she is and when people try to talk about it they get threatened. In the fourth chapter called “Uber-Sex” Ovidie conclude by demonstrating the main reasons why women get into that kind of work. The following section would present how feminism criminology fits best on explaining several events from the documentary.
Implementing Feminism Criminology into the Film
In criminology, there are several theories which its purpose is to know why crime occurs. Under feminism are several ideologies, two of them are radical feminism and Marxist feminism (Maras, 2017, p. 209).
Radical and Marxist feminism match in some ways with the film. In radical feminism, men see themselves as superior to women and control women and also radical feminists “believe that pornography subjugates and subordinates women and is ultimately harmful to them” (Maras, 2017, p. 209). Such statement is supported by the film since Ovidie, and other people interview by her, state that today society demands more aggressive adult scenes. In such scenes, women are treated as objects and are harmed, and even beating, to satisfy people desires. This make society sometimes to treat women like they are of less value or as a sexual object without having sympathy for them.
Also, this can be described with the term hegemonic masculinity which describes “the actions that promote a dominant position of men in society and the subordination of women” (Maras, 2017, p. 209) and the availability of free pornographic videos via online make look this more normal. Marxist feminism views gender inequality based on the job that women and men have, in where women have jobs with bad payment (Maras, 2017, p. 209). This statement fits in the video when Ovidie shows in the fourth chapter that women came from poor families or get jobs without good paid and as result, they engage in the pornographic industry to gain more money. This is also an example of feminism criminology which “seeks to explain the causes of female criminality and the differences between male and female offenders” (Maras, 2017, p. 209). Under this perspective, the criminal activity by women results from “social and economic inequality” (Maras, 2017, p. 209).
This explains what Ovidie shows in the fourth chapter. Cyberfeminism and one of its general schools of thought, cyberdystopianism, fit in the documentary. Cyberfeminism refers to the “principles and practices of feminism concerning the Internet, computers, and related technology” and its primary focus is in the role of gender in cyberspace and the treatment of women online (Maras, 2017, p. 213). Such primary purposes of cyberfeminism are seen in the documentary when Ovidie narrates that women get insulted while they are performing their sexual activities through webcam forums/shows to gain money. This type of issue falls under and fits cyberdystopianism since it views the cyberspace as “intensifying gender differences. . . [and it create] a new discriminatory space [based on the] harassment, threats, verbal abuse, and ridicule of self-identified women in virtual environment” (Maras, 2017, p. 213). In the documentary are cases showing deviance cyberacts like sexual deviance, sodomy, and several psychosexual disorders like fetishism, sadomasochism, and voyeurism. Also, there are public order cybercrimes showed on the documentary, in specific cyberprostitution, cybersex, and cyberpornography. These types of cyberacts show how feminism criminology and cyberfeminism fits in explaining how women engage in such cybercrimes, as well as people that watch them, get their services, or made them commit such acts.
As it was discussed in this paper, the feminism criminology and cyberfeminism, and the theories that fall under it, is the theory that best fit in describing what causes women to engage in deviance cyberacts and public order cybercrimes. Radical feminism, Marxist feminism, and cyberdystopianism help in explaining the possible reasons why actresses from the documentary engage in deviance cyberacts and public order cybercrimes. There are other theories that can also explain the reason of why people, in general, engage in cybercrimes, but there are little theories focusing on women and their reason in engaging in cybercrimes. Theories would keep adapting to diverse types of cybercrimes, but criminology still needs time to explain crime in a comprehensive, specific, and depth way to have a better idea of what causes crime.