Questioning whether you are hot or not at 11 years old has become all the rage on YouTube. Certainly this is just another manifestation of our culture of trash that is not only all over the internet today, but also on most TV’s in the U.S. When this reached the level it has with prepubescent girls on YouTube however, even I started to wonder if some sort of proactive, protective, censorship is in order.
I will not do them the favor of linking to any of the video’s I am referring to but a quick search on YouTube will easily enlighten anyone who wants to be shocked. Now I may not be the most logical person to have strong feelings about this since I am a middle aged guy who has always been very good at ignoring the cesspools of society. I have never watched American Idol, Charlie Sheen, or any of the other pop culture time sinks. I don’t even know who Kim Kardashian is for gosh sakes other than to see her referred to in the media as the most recent example of gutter trash TV. I know as well as anyone that we choose what we spend our time watching, and I spend no time at all on this stuff. But, when I heard about this YouTube frenzy of young girls posting videos asking if they were pretty or ugly, and read about all the obscene, hurtful, disturbed, responses, I decided to watch a few of them.
I was shocked but I don’t know what can be done short of YouTube actually enforcing their age limit rules or implementing some sort of censorship to get these videos taken down before they have millions of views. Yes, millions. The most viewed example of this trend now has over 4.5 million views. I have seen the argument put forth that the children posting are damaged youth to begin with, the product of abusive or neglectful homes. But interviews with the families of some of these young girls seem to show the opposite. They are just normal, insecure young kids wondering where they fit into our youth obsessed, fame obsessed, exploitation obsessed, culture. And the easy availability of YouTube for them to post these videos and then read the responses from disturbed bullies is just another unhealthy aspect of today’s cultural black hole.
It may be a bit elitist to even be concerned about this trend, but I do feel better having vented a bit. What do you think? Does this disturb you as much as it does me? Or are you satisfied with our ability to ignore things like this by simple not watching?