Women, regardless of how far they have come, have a lot to worry about in life. Disregarding the minimal stress of family life, friendships and work, women are also potential victims of every street they walk - whether the crime be robbery, assault or rape, women have a LOT to be concerned about. The makers of the Facebook webpage ‘Chicas Bondi’ (‘Bus Girls) have (disgustingly) added a new worry to our long list - the camera phone. The women of Beunos Aires have been victims of unsuspected snapshots, then posted and enjoyed on the internet under the guise of ‘art’. Without even taking into account the total and blatant disregarding of personal privacy, the site clearly advoctes the image of these women as nothing more than appearances and faces to be enjoyed and seen.
Little can be done to actually stop this process, as the camera phone is not essentially a suspicious item to be holding up and as Facebook and the ever expanding constitutions of ‘art’ provides the opportunity for such images and websites to exist, and (even) thrive.
While Chicas Bondi now asks consent (and only under the guise that their ‘art’ will be expedated into a fullscale movie project - the only reason the creators agreed to ask consent from its female ‘art’), the site still advocates misogynist qualities and themes and, furhtermore, may encourage the spread of such activities in other cities.
If anything, the existence these types of websites have gained and the encouagement provided for them makes me fear that women are placed in even more danger on public transport, even if the bus is full.
In this article, NY times’s Nicholas D Kristof highlights the growing issue of ‘branding’ - a process wherein a pimp will brand his girls with his name, often by tattoo, sometimes by more violent means. Kristof’s article records the implication this holds, in symbolically placing the female body as his own property. Kristof further goes on to priase the increase in anti-sex trafficking laws and hopes the will continue to improve the situation of sex workers currently in the United States.