Warn and risk losing a friendship? Or just feign ignorance?
May 28, 2009 6:57 PM   Subscribe

I have a delicate matter on my hands regarding a lady friend.

I have recently discovered on the Internet a short movie of her, on a porn site, during which she was in a photo shoot. It isn't actual porn, she's just semi-nude.

The question is - how do I act? Do I tell her I have found the video? Warn her that it may come back later to harm her if she will become a public figure at some point? Or just pretend I didn't see it?

What do you suggest?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (16 answers total)
 
If it was a real photo shoot (and not homemade) then she's well aware that she made the film and that people would see it and I don't see how "warning" her about the consequences of something she already did could possibly be helpful. Since you're uncomfortable, better to say nothing.
posted by moxiedoll at 7:00 PM on May 28, 2009


could you use one of those anonymous email services to alert her to the video? I'm assuming you just want her to know about the possibility that the video has fallen into the wrong hands and not necessarily let her know you know.
posted by any major dude at 7:02 PM on May 28, 2009


I can't quite figure out what type of photoshoot it was, so here are somee specific suggestions:

1) If it was an erotic photoshoot for which she was paid, don't bring it up.
2) If it was non-erotic modeling, tell her. One or more of the people she worked with is a scumbag.
3) If it was homemade "photoshoot", tell her. One or more of her sexual partners is/was a scumbag.
4) If it was anything other than a video made during a photoshoot where she was half-nude for a specific reason, tell her. I think figuring out whether the video seems to be a voyeuristic thing or documentary thing will help resolve this: does she acknowledge the video camera at any point?
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 7:10 PM on May 28, 2009 [5 favorites]


Warn her that it may come back later to harm her if she will become a public figure at some point?

She's already well aware of this, and there's nothing she can do about it now, anyway. Leave it alone.
posted by Greg Nog at 7:17 PM on May 28, 2009


You should find a way of telling her, if there is reason to believe she would be surprised. She presumably knows that these photos were taken, but perhaps she didn't know they would be posted on actual porn sites. I.G above breaks this down very well.

2) If it was non-erotic modeling, tell her. One or more of the people she worked with is a scumbag.
3) If it was homemade "photoshoot", tell her. One or more of her sexual partners is/was a scumbag.

posted by grobstein at 7:23 PM on May 28, 2009


could you use one of those anonymous email services to alert her to the video? I'm assuming you just want her to know about the possibility that the video has fallen into the wrong hands and not necessarily let her know you know.

The only thing creepier than a friend sending me videos of myself would be an anonymous internet person sending me videos of myself.
posted by HFSH at 8:22 PM on May 28, 2009 [10 favorites]


Are you absolutely sure it is her? I'm a girl who looks like a lot of other girls, or so I am told.

Personally, I know quite a few women who have dabbled in porn/stripping/modeling at some point in their careers. It's not such a rare thing anymore, what with women taking pole dancing classes and the crappy economy.

How much of your relationship hinges on this issue? Is this someone you are dating? It is a deal breaker? If it is going to really bug you, I say you be forthright about it and just tell her. Then of course there is the awkward issue of saying to your ladyfriend, "so I was watching some porn on the internet and saw an actress who looks just like you!"
posted by pluckysparrow at 9:21 PM on May 28, 2009


I did some modeling when I was younger and it was all clothed but sometimes you change right there or walk around in your underwear while switching outfits. If someone had taped me changing or setting up and put it on the web I'd want to know. That is a HUGE deal and will kill a photographers career stone dead if he or his staff are responsible.

If you think that's the scenario, I vote for letting her know asap. Depending on what the model release said she can probably sue the pants off them and she can definitely get it taken down.
posted by fshgrl at 10:21 PM on May 28, 2009


Your question is a little ambiguous so forgive me if I'm completely off track. You're concerned about a semi-nude picture/movie you saw on the internet, that may or may not be your friend. It doesn't even depict a sex act. Such pictures are hardly in short supply. What do you hope to accomplish by bringing this to your friend's attention? Do you think it's been put up without her knowledge or consent?

I realize this is anonymous and you can't respond, but if you do approach her with this, please be aware of the double standard you seem to be promoting: that it's wrong or shameful for her to be even tangentially involved in porn, but ok for you to be watching.

My vote is to keep it to yourself. It may not even be her.
posted by Space Kitty at 10:53 PM on May 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Let me revise my earlier answer in line with what many wise commenters have said:

You should find a way of telling her, if but only if there is reason to believe she would be surprised.
posted by grobstein at 12:27 AM on May 29, 2009


Yeah, as people have noted, there's a big difference 'tween it if she knew it was filmed for purposes of posting or not (Not clear if you can tell or be reasonably confident). If she knew it, is fine with it, she presumably cares little about the fact that you (and countless others) have seen it.

If so, in theory she shrugs and doesn't care much if at all if you mention it. (If you are concerned that she would react adversely to you because you're essentially telling her that you look at online porn, that's tangential and we don't know the nature of your relationship with her.) Maybe she knows, regrets it and it is a source of embarrassment? Dunno.

Hard to see a worst-case scenario in telling her directly that ends really badly and it could alert her to something of concern. (What she could do about it is a whole 'nother nasty kettle of fish, but I think most people would rather know than not.)

Oh, in terms of the double standard out there. Indeed it is there, but acknowledging it is not condoing or perpetuating it.

If I don't have the first concern or judgment about hiring/working with/dating/knowing someone who has done pornography or prostitution or stripping--and people have directly related secrets so the latter two are not hypothetical--and would not tell people if I happened across this knowledge, the unfortunate reality is that plenty of people do judge and gossip.

That reality probably shouldn't be ignored.
posted by ambient2 at 4:03 AM on May 29, 2009


If you think she doesn't know about it, tell her, but lay off the "OMG THIS IS THE MOST HORRIBLE THING EVER" because it will just make her feel worse. Mention it, say "I thought you should know", be as casual as possible about it.

I'm going to guess that if you thought she did it purposefully you wouldn't be asking the question (wouldn't she already know?) but yeah, if you think she knows about it then don't mention it. Or save it to your hard drive.
posted by kathrineg at 10:58 AM on May 29, 2009


Well, here are my two cents....

If I were her, I'd want to know that you had seen the video. I know if it were me and I found out that you'd seen the video but didn't tell me you'd seen it, I be ticked off and start wondering what all else you weren't telling me.

Tell her regardless of whether or not you think she knows about this video. Don't lecture her about it. Just tell her that you ran across it on the Internet and wanted to let her know 1) that it's out there if she didn't know, and 2) that's you'd seen it and wanted to be upfront with her about. Tell her privately, in person, don't make it dramatic, and don't tell anyone else about it.
posted by sapphirebbw at 12:03 PM on May 29, 2009


There's also the possibility that she hasn't told you because she was afraid you'd be 'OMG judgy!' about it.
posted by Space Kitty at 5:05 PM on May 29, 2009


I think it is fun how much hidden morality there is in the question and many of the responses that automatically think that it is the worst thing that could ever happen to her. Perhaps she was looking good, and really wanted to(!) Of course we have no idea where she lives or in what context we can judge her at all, given the brief nature of the question, but give it a thought why she would do it, that may also lead to your response.
posted by KimG at 7:29 PM on May 29, 2009


I would definitely tell her!! Just be like, "soooo, I so this video of you.. I had no idea, when did you get into that? And don't worry, I won't go around telling people if this is something you'd like to keep hidden, but know it's out there and if I found it other people will too."

Aren't you curious? Don't you want to know what she says? I know if any of my guy friends saw a video of me (there aren't any, just using this as an example) they'd probably tell all our mutual friends and me immediately, just to poke fun at it. Because why the heck not!! Definitely ask! If you're close to her it's not a big deal, if you're not close to her, well, then, you might get a lot closer discussing personal stuff like this.

Oh man, I can think of so many fun ways to bring this up if I ever see a video of any of my friends.
posted by KateHasQuestions at 8:16 PM on May 29, 2009


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