YouTube: Pedophile Playground

ytpp-title
The world became a smaller place with the advent of online social networking. It is becoming almost what Marshall McLuhan, among others, predicted: an internationally networked community, a global village, where human interaction can be virtually instantaneous, and can take the form of text exchanges on message boards, pictures, voice, music, and video. At its best, the medium itself approaches something akin to the rudimentary projection of consciousness — a new means of expression, a very immediate and even intimate touching of personalities.

Take MySpace, for example.

Reclaiming MySpace

MySpace pages are simple to construct and navigate — so simple, even a child can design one. And millions of children do, with many thousands of those children loosely- or unsupervised and vulnerable. And wherever there are unsupervised and vulnerable children, there are child predators, pederasts and youth fetishists, who seek to psychologically manipulate and sexually exploit those children. Before the Internet, before chatrooms and webcams and IRCs, these were the depraved and obsessed and child-fixated adults who sought contact with children on real world playgrounds and schoolyards and kids’ clubs and churches. Now, they gravitate online, drawn like jackals to the herd, looking for the helpless, the wounded and alone. The pedophile problem on MySpace became pervasive — so prevalent parents were pulling their children off MySpace and complaining loudly to law enforcement and lawmakers.

To address increasing public alarm — as well as to quell bad publicity — MySpace then partnered with a company called Sentry Tech, developed a new technology, and named it SentinelSAFE — a system aggregating the various sex offender registries into one place, against which MySpace could verify its users. MySpace then lobbied lawmakers for email registration legislation requiring all sex offenders to register any and all of their email addresses when registering their physical address, with a penalty of 10 to 20 years imprisonment if violated.

For the most part, active MySpace pedophiles seeking out contact with children moved on, to safer ground, away from the spotlight of public — and law enforcement — attention. Many predators found an online home on other sites.

YouTube: The Pedophile Stealth Market

While MySpace was being conceived and constructed, another idea was taking root — a place of social networking that was centered around the concept of sharing video files. Ostensibly, the videos were supposed to be ones owned and created by the YouTube user, but anyone could see the opportunity for the distribution of copyrighted material, and soon duplicated versions of television shows were making the circuit, being uploaded almost as quickly as YouTube could take them down.

The traffic on YouTube exploded beyond expectations, quickly outpacing other social sites online. By October 2006, Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) decided they liked it so well enough to buy it. But there was supposition in some corners that YouTube had cheated to gain their rank, with one commentator, posting only as James, pointing out a shocking possibility for YouTube’s growth.

“YouTube is currently the premier distributor for what is arguably soft child porn,” writes James. “Newsgroups on YouTube have been organized expressly for pedophiles, by pedophiles, to share information on the latest soft child porn videos uploaded to YouTube. Kids from just under 18, all the way to toddler age, routinely upload videos of ‘strip teases’ that seem tailor made for pedophiles, and YouTube allows many to stay up on their site.

“It’s the law of supply and demand,” writes James. “Child porn is presumably hard to obtain, and YouTube’s offering of ‘soft’ child porn is the best of both worlds for them, in that they can watch a 10 year old engage in a strip tease down to her underwear, dancing to ‘My Humps,’ or worse, and it’s approved by YouTube. Call them their ‘stealth subscribers.’ They really run up the repetitive viewhits, they are all over YouTube, and have been since the beginning.”

Pandering to pedophiles as an emerging stealth market cannot have been integral to the vision of YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen, nor could anyone have expected the pedophile presence on YouTube to be so brazen and pervasive. Seriously, someone can’t just create a profile and say, “Hello, I’m a pedophile. Let’s chat.” Right?

Astonishingly, yes, pedophiles can and yes, pedophiles do. With the ability to send public and private messages to ‘Tubers, as well as the ability for children to create and upload their own Video Log (or ‘vlog’), YouTube has become a haven for pedophiles to initiate contact and groom future victims. And the ghastly thing about it is that they’re not even being all that discreet about it, with some of them proclaiming outright their pedophilia and defending it as some form of free speech.

Pedophiles R Us

“Most of the time I’m with boys there is no sexual involvement,” writes YouTube user Myidisphat. The message is in a string of conversation following the posting of a video in which the user uses the computer game “Halo 3″ to spell out “I ‘heart’ Little Boys” with pieces of digital shrapnel. “They think I’m cool as hell because I do crazy shit all the time. Of course they love to ruff play.” Myidisphat follows up his statement, saying, “I’m not saying there is sexual involvement, but I’m not saying there isn’t.”

Like many vocal pedophiles on YouTube, Myidisphat touts pedophilia as a matter of freedom of expression. “I think that boy lovers are the most open minded people of this earth,” he writes. “We are extremely caring. Your children would tell us things that they would never tell you. We are better than any parent with children.” His video work draws, as one might expect, a great amount of irate comments, but Myidisphat also attracts his share of admirers, getting compliments from such users like draconis121, and counts among his friends (in YouTube parlance, a “friend” is someone who has sent you a request to be officially connected to your channel) sixteen-year-old fatherxxasmodeus and 2akopilag, a “Young Tuber” with a collection of videos by a boy named Jaeger.

(UPDATE, 2009-10-23: Myidisphat, whose real name is now known to be Gary Wolchesky of Middletown, NJ, has now been arrested for possession of child pornography. See the write-up at the Asbury Park Press.)

Contrast Myidisphat with YouTube user WMCritest, whose real identity is publicly known. WMCritest, aka Dr. Nigel Leigh Oldfield, is a former science teacher. Outwardly charming, urbane and eloquent, he also has an arrest record for possession of child pornography. Oldfield was taken into custody in August of 2002 when he was spotted taking pictures of children at a shopping mall. Further police investigation turned up over 11,000 images of child pornography on his home computer. He served eight months for possession, and is now a crusader for pedophilia and its many forms as a form of free speech. He even links to his Website, a compendium of articles that support his theories on psychosexuality, as well as a documentation of his struggles with the legal system. His YouTube channel contains a series of text-show videos in which he holds forth on topics of interest for the Minor-Attracted Adult, a term created to bury the stigma attached to the term pedophile. “Part of my sexuality is that of a MAA, yes,” says Dr. Oldfield in the comments to one of his videos. “Indeed, I am not a paedophile, by the correct definition. If I was, I would admit it… as there is no problem in having a clinical condition, per se.”

Children as Victims, Children as Weapons

In August, 2006, user troyriser joined YouTube to upload videos of himself and his children to share with friends and family. When comments were left by pedophiles regarding a video of his boxer son jumping rope, Troy followed the subscription and friend listing trail of those pedophiles to YoungTubersUnited, a for-profit children’s video-making organization with over 6,000 members worldwide, with both a YouTube channel, youngtubersunited2, and an independent website — an organization vying for corporate sponsorship from Nike and CBS, and for admission into YouTube’s partnership program.

As Riser delved further, he started expressing concerns about the lack of fundamental safeguards. “I began questioning the motives of the YTU’s most enthusiastic — and most vociferous — adult supporters, all of whom were anonymous and most of whom were apparently adult, single males,” says Riser. “I received nothing but evasion, obfuscation, silence, and outright lies, both from its supporters and from documented agents of YTU, including YouTube user Irish282.”

The controversy escalated after Riser made a series of videos dealing with the subject of YouTube pedophiles, which has resulted in a sustained and coordinated harassment campaign culminating in an extortion and child endangerment investigation by federal and state law enforcement. Currently, he has had at least seven channels dedicated to expressing hatred for him, with another dozen videos devoted to discrediting and vilifying him. Two of these openly display the address of his 14 year old son, his son’s school, and his son’s activity center, with an explicit message for people to come and visit him — as well as the threat to shut down his channel and delete his videos or more channels will appear, each more outrageous and threatening than the last, with the next featuring his teenage daughter.

The pedophile extortionist writes, “Just so you know Troy. I’m not leaving. I will keep making these channels until you are gone. If Evil men Harm Jake like your bulletin claims. That will be on your head. Close your channel if you care about your son and the channel comes down. This should be apparent to everyone you don’t love your son…Well, not in a fatherly way.” One such account featuring his son, along with photos and contact and address information, was active for over a week before YouTube finally suspended activity. Before the day was out, another account was back up with the same information. “As long as Troy is here, so will these channels,” the user states.

Following the advice of the authorities, Troy Riser has no intention of acceding to the demands of online predators, no matter how organized, cohesive, or ruthless. His response to the threats aimed at him and his family is unprintable here.

YoungTubersUnited

Do a Google search on YoungTubersUnited, and you’ll quickly find a number of support videos demanding its return. Here was a channel that young kids were flocking to, a groundswell movement that was getting kids interested in video production. The fan base for the channel, featuring videos starring and created by kids, was enormous.

Unfortunately, so was the temptation, as not all of the subscribers were kids, but rather adults — which in and of itself is not all that unsavory. But the opportunity for pedophile poaching proved irresistible to some YouTube users, and the subscriber list for the channel included such entries as BigCD2002, a regular of the BoyMoment website, where he boasted of grooming an eleven-year-old.

Tobiran Horde

Tobiran Horde

When YouTube suspended the account (officially because the users violated YouTube’s Terms of Service agreement — they were under 13, although the channel was officially registered in an adult’s name), many of the support videos that sprung up in the wake came from sources that wouldn’t exactly be considered caring adults. YouTube user TobiranHorde made a vlog expressing his support for the return of the channel; unfortunately for TobiranHorde, he made the video while wearing the t-shirt emblazoned with the universal BoyLover logo. Oops.

YouTube. YouPolice?

YouTube has a handful of methods for users to report, or ‘flag,’ a user’s channel whenever they view a violation of YouTube’s policies — copyright infringement, trademark infringement, adult video, and the like. However, it takes time to process the flags, and the subjective decisions often leave one scratching their head as to how YouTube thinks.

But things may change soon. MySpace’s SentinelSAFE is licensable to other social networking sites, and Google is at least considering taking a step in a corrective direction. “We are supportive of the concept of industry, advocacy groups, and the Attorneys’ General sitting down and working through the feasibility of age verification,” says a Google spokesperson of the MySpace model. “We are currently studying the proposal.”

YouTube is caught between the horns of a dilemma, of course. A drastic, dramatic change in YouTube corporate culture that brings about an end to the pedophile presence permeating the site would entail an enormous risk in terms of both publicity and profitability. By looking the other way, by ignoring the problem altogether and leaving the flagging and reporting of pedophiles to concerned members of the YouTube user community, YouTube absolves itself of corporate responsibility for the problem. On the other hand, if YouTube takes a proactive stance and initiates steps to acknowledge and address the problem, then YouTube is suddenly, fully, legally accountable — leaving itself vulnerable to litigation resulting from harm to a child using its services. So YouTube studies proposals, hoping beyond hope, no doubt, the pedophile problem will magically resolve itself.

The pedophiles know this, of course. So YouTube has become a hunting ground for many of them, in a very real sense. Law enforcement, for its part, is stretched thin; the FBI, Interpol, and so on, are in the middle of a war on terror. Their first concern, rightfully so, is a global jihad intent on blowing up thousands of people.

Meanwhile, online predators on YouTube continue initiating contact with children, telling those children how smart they are or how cool they are or how pretty or handsome or fun they are, seeking out those vulnerable or lonely or impressionable children whose parents don’t know or don’t care with whom their child is interacting online, even though some of those men and women resemble nothing so much as wild dogs bringing down a deer.

Of course, the first and best line of defense always starts in the home. It’s not only important for parents to monitor their children’s Internet usage, but also to engage them in dialogue about who they’re networked to, and why. Explain to them that they should only connect to people they already know, and that they should contact you immediately if any anonymous user insists on getting them into an IM or chat session — and never, ever, reveal personally identifying information. And if your children ask you why, suck it up and tell them.

Because we’ve told our children there are no such things as monsters.

And we lied.

37 Responses to YouTube: Pedophile Playground

  1. Stian says:

    Holy crap, you take fear-mongering to a new level. There is nothing more dangerous and unpredictable than a herd of people scared shitless of a marginal threat blown out of proportions. Get a grip!

  2. Flurry says:

    There is litte to add to what Stian said.
    Except that: if you let your children go online without supervision or guidance, don’t come back whining about the evils of the net.

    For my part of the world, the crimerates have been dropping for years, but public perception is that they are on a constant rise. Don’t get caught in all that FUD aimed towards destory your civil liberties! (And that of your children, too!)

  3. JRaden says:

    What the hell? True there are perverts on the internet, and kids should be supervised, but what the hell is this garbage?
    Talk about blowing things into an unrealistic proportions.
    What an odd article this is.

    May I ask why the Youtube *user name* of “a 16 year old boy” (you clearly described as such) is posted in this article about “child endangerment”? Is that not more than ironic? Do you know the harassment this could lead directly to this kid? I think the author of this should be tried for child endangerment.

    I did some more quick checking on some of this.
    Young Tubers appears to have a swarm of comments made about this Troy Riser character. It appears they have answered any questions ever asked of them and were told by Mr. Riser they were “lying”.

    I see plenty about Irish828 filing copyright complaints to stop people from using copies of videos to harass them, to protect the persons making such videos from obtaining any of the families addresses. This article makes it sound like this person is some sort of management position where he meets with kids. This is clearly stated as being extremely appreciated by the parents.

    I see this individual’s name and address all over, why does this article state he is “anonymous” when his sole purpose seems to be *using* and exposing his own name and address on copyright forms to protect others who are victimized?

    This also seems to claim that Young Tubers group is run by other than kids, I see nothing that even remotely points to this. It seems to be run by a 13 year old boy. I have seen videos with this boy’s father and the boy both discussing the origins of this group, and national articles and coverage I remember from last year. Why would anyone be attacking this boy and his father? Thats dispicable to throw them into an article about pedophiles.

    I saw their website and I saw no vying for any sort of “sponsorships” whatsoever. I saw a list of companies mentions but as being YouTube’s sponsors, with a plea for people to write letters of complaint to them about their suspension practices, regardless of parental supervision, or even a parent’s account as it appears to have been in their case. I saw no mention of them asking for sponsorships from any of these companies whatsoever. Either the author of this article is the worst at checking out facts, or there is some sort of intentional malice aimed at certain individuals by attempting to distort things about these kids and their group.
    If I were that boy’s father I would be contacting my lawyer to sue Mr. RJ Carter and Mr. Troy Riser, IMHO.

    • eric says:

      you would but you are too busy stalking kids you sicko!!you seem to be quite offended by any talk against pedophiles, you sick fuck!!! go kill yourself, you’re warped mentality will get you no where, you are not rational, not humane, not bright at all. You are sick, not unlike a schizophrenic but far more dangerous than even a plain psychopath, although definitely psychopathy is part of your problem! sex is your only goal in life – do you not see how pathetic you are? Kids can’t choose you and they don’t, you are ugly and putrid beyond all belief!

  4. therjcarter says:

    You’re welcome for the above posting. Your obviously heartfelt and sincere concerns are completely understandable, and I appreciate the inordinate amount of research you put into a reply to my blog. Rest assured the points you’ve brought up here (and elsewhere) are being addressed individually and in detail in a future publication, currently being fact-checked.

  5. funny jraden, their site hasnt been up for months, and what news were you watching that you saw jessari and his father? did you forget that jessari got banned for breaking the rules? and where would these youtube comments be and how exactly did you find them via a search engine? no i think its more likely that you are one of the pedophiles mentioned in this article simply trying to bullshit because you cant dmca this one away. you are just going to have to deal with it and wait for the cops to take you away for raping children you sick fuck.

  6. PuterPrsn says:

    The major stumbling block to more sites using some form of policing is obviously that they can then be sued for trying and failing. Seems to me, then, that the fundamental problem is not they need some form of protection for them if they make an effort to police their users. Without that, it makes no business sense at all to even try.

  7. web says:

    There is nothing more vile and worthless as a pedophile. Those animals are the lowest form of scum there is.

  8. flagflagger says:

    I’ve been reporting these videos for years now, and honestly am sick of youtube’s non-policing of its site. Now, you can’t even turn in users. I’ve got a list of 6 or 7 users that collect these legal but “wrong” videos of these young kids doing stuff they should not be doing and I cannot find a way to report them on youtube.

    Pathetic.

    • therjcarter says:

      YouTube still has a method of reporting users (other than the video-flagging option), but they’ve made it far more difficult since they removed the direct-link ability to pull up their user-reporting form. Makes you wonder just whose side YouTube is on in all of this mess sometimes. Thanks for commenting!

  9. Susan says:

    I don’t think you’d say this about fear mongering if it were your child at risk.

  10. Updownmoistly says:

    This article speaks the truth, no matter how much Logan Sperman2 and Irish282 try to discredit it. The truth hurts doesn’t it, “boys?”

  11. [...] Links: YouTube: Pedophile Playground (This article may be a little extreme and bias but it gives a good idea of the severity of the [...]

  12. Great post its so sad that it continues to be a problem at YouTube with the pedophiles and other deviants flaunting their lusts assuming society must accept their destroying ways or ducking and dodging around corners leaving nasty comments to kids.

    Enough is enough and when it comes to child safety its never enough!

  13. looks like “logan” is on leave..lol.
    Pedophiles never give up so we know “logan” will pop up again.

  14. Lisa says:

    YouTube is rife with pedophiles and pedophile sympathizers. YouTube doesn’t care, it’s all about greed, they just want the money. YouTube is the corporate sex offender of the world. Some countries don’t even allow their citizens to access YouTube, I can see why. YouTube is full of child nudity and by law it is considered child porn. Yet YouTube does NOTHING about it. YouTube should be prosecuted for child porn.

  15. Lisa yes, and I understand your frustration. YouTube does delete sometimes you just have to keep reporting.

  16. kim says:

    I just came across a person who calls him or herself childmolester54 I went all over you tube trying to report him/her and all I could do was flag for spam.I am disgusted!Is there anything we can do?

    • R.J. Carter says:

      Hi Kim,

      I understand completely your frustration with reporting a user to YouTube. At one time, there was a very simple method for reporting users — so simple that YouTube did away with it.

      I’d suspect that the user you’ve named is probably trolling for reactions, given that his user id is so blatant. However, if his/her activity online merits attention, the best you can do via YouTube is to “flag” his/her videos. Which isn’t to say that this is the only thing you can do entirely. You can always speak to your local law enforcement who can follow up on your concerns. Or, you could inquire with the folks at Perverted Justice, or wikisposure.com about the user.

      By no means trust the group calling themselves the YouTube Vigilantes (YTV).

  17. Brandi says:

    Youtube is just horrible. There are so many parents that unknowingly upload videos of their children dancing or swimming, or sleeping that you and I would think totally innocent, but they have the most stomach churning comments you could ever imagine on them.

    Amazon blocks ip addresses, why can’t youtube? I have been reporting some pedophile groups on youtube for nearly a month, and yet they are still functioning. It’s like google doesn’t care about kids. It only bothers them if they are sued for copyrights.

    I have been contacting the parents that post videos of their kids, sending them the comments I see and suggesting they disable comments on the videos. But it shouldn’t all have to be on the parents, it’s google’s job to rid youtube of people like that.It’s really sad

    I really cannot believe that Nbc is hosting a youtuber’s America’s got talent. But on the bright side, maybe Nbc will see the disgusting comments made to little children, and decide to do a story on the pedophiles of youtube.

    • R.J. Carter says:

      Hi Brandi,

      I can only hope you’re right about NBC seeing the kind of comments and followers that kids get on YouTube. Google definitely makes it almost impossible for parents to contact them about abuse on YouTube — they’re removed the ability to report users, and their customer service phone numbers exist largely to play you the message that there is no customer service.

  18. J. Fox says:

    It’s a relief to find this blog and read your article and some of the comments. This is the first time I’ve seen anybody acknowledge the nature and scale of the problem. YouTube really is a paedophile playground, and a huge stealth market for soft child porn. The strangest thing is that it goes on right underneath the noses of other YT users who remain blissfully ignorant that the site is being used that way.

    I started to become aware of the situation by chance about 5 weeks ago, and since then I have been becoming increasingly angry, frustrated and incredulous over Google/YT’s apparent indifference and lack of action. I started monitoring and reporting the activities of one very sick and malicious guy, contacted the police, and managed to get his account suspended twice within a week, only to find him returning each time within a few hours. Finally, after watching him and his buddies for another week it dawned upon me that I’d been seeing just one fragment of a massive problem. There are countless people on YT openly posting sexualised content featuring children, both in video and text format, with impunity. I’ve spent hours today reporting this material, and now realise that my time was wasted.

    It is extremely disturbing. It’s the stuff of nightmares. I’m currently unable to think of a more effective response, but the issue certainly – somehow – needs to enter the mainstream discourse on social networking and corporate social responsibility.

    • R.J. Carter says:

      As the old adage goes: Sex sells. Sexualizing our children has become a sad norm. (Ever heard of a show called “Toddlers & Tiaras?”)

      YouTube cares about advertising dollars, and the more ads get seen, the more dollars come in. If a video gets traffic, that’s pretty much all YouTube / Google cares about, and pedophiles have learned how to work that system to their advantage.

  19. Sela says:

    Fear-mongering? Myidisphat was caught in possession of CP. He implied he has probably been inappropriate with little boys — there’s no way he’d dance around the issue if he were innocent.

    You must be one of the aforementioned pedophiles, Stian. That’s the only way I can imagine someone would not be concerned about these kids and see this as a viable threat. I’m not a parent, I am not even a member of youtube, and I’m concerned. I mean seriously, “DJ” making that creepy video about going to the hotel? Not being able to contact the eleven-year-old boy once he told his parents “things”? That’s not a threat? Because he’s only one of many.

  20. kitten says:

    im here because im looking for info on how to report 2 men i have found tonight who are openly pedophiles grooming children on utube. i wouldnt have believed that children this young dont have parents in their business looking out for them.
    if you dont believe it, its because you havent looked. i was looking through tots and tiaras stuff, and started noticing a pattern of a certain man. i followed him and found he asks girls for sexy dance videoas. and i mean 7 and 8 year olds. another man had told him that he also loves young girls. then i checked his pattern. he also favorites and asks for special videos from young girls. and the girls are thrilled to have the attention. its sad.

  21. Allie says:

    What is happening to children these days is terribly disturbing. And, there is nothing wrong with warning people of the dangers. I say this article is spot on and objecting to warning people to be careful of their children’s internet use is a red flag, I’d say.

    What disgusts me most is how unashamed these pedophiles are of their twisted, disgusting, reprehensible and vile attractions towards children.

    And, shame on Youtube for giving what should be scorned social outcasts a place to feel at home, gather themselves together to prey on more and more children and throw the fact that they can into legitimately sane people’s faces.

    I believe I have come across a new cause.

    I will do my level best to get Youtube the bad press they so deserve for having allowed this disgusting activity to not only continue but grow.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: