Learning Behavioral Patterns, From the View of Private I

Impressions and Being You
Each person has their own individual identity. We have all learned how to respond to situations, and despite different upbringings, there is a general consensus by the population of what is considered acceptable behavior. Knowing how to respond using proper etiquette in any setting helps create a good impression of yourself, shows maturity of age, and knowledge of human respectfulness.

The impression you leave may be compromised if others are intent on damaging your reputation. With advances in technology, the ability to view anyone remotely is accessible to almost anyone. Remote applications which are easily available, provide the ability to view and speak overhead to someone anywhere, despite any privacy laws. As this becomes more popular, a person’s good image is nearly impossible to preserve. While it may be natural to present yourself at your best while in public, there are many situations where a person does not wish to be viewed or have their life publicized. Several examples of this might include using the restroom, bathing, romance or other interactions with others. Everyone deserves privacy in their own life. Without question there are moments of privacy that no one would want watched or analyzed.

No Kidding, Children Too
Children likewise should be immune to remote viewing. While it may seem to be the ideal way to monitor a child by having a virtual babysitter spying overhead, it teaches the child that this is the norm. A child who is raised with stalkers overhead, learns to communicate with them, and generally learns to welcome them into their environment. It would seem that this would be on radar for Child Protective Services and fall into the exploitation of children category, even if parents give access. There truly is no way to control what is being viewed by the remote viewer. Psychologically it is similar to a child having imaginary friends, except they do not make them up, the remote viewer really exists. The spies overhead have the ability to order the child, view the child live, zoom, and even x-ray them. The child learns a different approach as an alternative to healthy interactions and real friendships. The child learns that every area of their life is subjected to being watched, even if no one is there, without boundaries, as way of life. They do not question that it is an acceptable way to communicate and interact.

Spying Risks All Around
For the Victim: Along with viewing, spies who use these remote applications on a regular basis, are able to notate behavioral patterns and unique styles of the victim they are watching. This detracts from the value each person has. Just as a company might be spied on to gather trade secrets, a person who is watched has their attributes stolen from them making them unmarketable. The victim feels their soul stripped as those things which compose their person are publicly viewed and shared. Much like automated artificial intelligence programs, spies are able to gather information on the way the individual lives their life as well as their schedule to predict next behaviors. Learning behaviors and patterns of a person can result in identity theft, stealing the personality and information about the victim and putting them at risk.

Further security concerns include not being able to escape remote viewers. People who use remote viewing methods can access anyone, any place, even outside, at any time of the day or night. Environments such as a car, an office, or a house offer no place to escape. Even outside, the victim can be watched real-time on trails in parks, in tents, in parking lots, and even in swimming pools underwater. For unwilling parties who do not want to be viewed, there is no escape. Having real-time audio access, the remote viewers also have the ability to speak live. There is no escape from their abuse constantly overhead, other than to block their comments by wearing headphones, which is unreasonable to wear all day and night.

For the Viewer: Beyond the affects that remote viewing has on the victim, it also affects the viewer who loses perception of the difference between watching a movie on screen and watching a personal life. Remote viewing quickly deteriorates the potential any human relationship might have by eroding trust. Besides creating a psychologically abusive environment that they cannot escape from, there are several other problems which arise from remote viewing that devalue human life and can potentially lead to addiction.

Threats Remote Viewing Causes:

1. Detracts from Human Worth. The first reason remote viewing is detrimental is it detracts from human worth. The appreciation of fully enjoying the personality and all the traits of another person is lost. Viewing becomes merely a form of entertainment. The problem is this entertainment quickly manifests to mockery, shunning, and comparison to others. It easily becomes a way to filter out any positives about a person, who has become nothing more than a detached, animated object on a screen. The spy begins to accentuate what they see and perceive as negatives.

2. Steals and Duplicates Personal Attributes. A second reason remote spying is a negative, is that there is a tendency to notice attributes or talents which the person excels at, to steal and duplicate. Any positive features are added to the spy’s personal portfolio or used to share with others to improve theirs. No longer are these attributes the selling points of the victim, but public knowledge. Instead of generating new talents or processes, they rely on duplicating what another does, to improve upon themselves. It would be better for the parties involved to freely share their own trade secrets from their own personal portfolios. Ripping off another’s personality, interests, way of speaking or behaving is not admirable. If these features were shared by the individual to another person it would be acceptable. If it was a celebrity who was admired for a trait, and it became a fad, this would be acceptable as well. However, those who spy on people to steal information rob another of what they may excel in. This is not to say that behaviors or traits are exclusive to each person. It is the way these attributes are shared which determines whether it is an offense. The maliciousness of those who spy often do this for their own self-improvement, to gather information to ‘help others’, for popularity, or to earn money. Regardless, it is for the downfall of the one they are spying upon.

3. Security Issue and Identity Theft. The third reason remote viewing should be resisted, is that monitoring and learning someone’s behaviors causes a security issue and identity theft. If a spy notates over time the intricacies of a person’s day or schedule, this can put the victim at risk. Noticing details such as how often a person does something, how they go about it, when, and why they make decisions, will give those who spy the ability to forecast next behaviors. They will predict in advance what they will do, where they will go, how they will interact, how they will react, as well as their bodily functions and reactions. While this type of micro-monitoring is suitable perhaps for a baby, this is not acceptable at all from adult-to-adult without permission. In fact it reflects the immaturity of these adults who consume their time monitoring the life of another, rather than improve upon their own life. There is no reason for the victim being viewed to even exist as all is known and any uniqueness duplicated.

4. Quelches Zeal for Life. Finally, remote viewing quelches the victim’s zeal for life. With all being stolen, and no privacy given, the victim feels violated by the second, unable to generate new energy and frozen with exploring and creating new material, because every second is known, seen and critiqued. The spy uses remote viewing to gain control and power over the victim in a world they cannot escape from. The spy pierces the victim’s creative and loving human soul to mold a generic spirit of nothingness. The victim becomes no more than an object, like an experimental rat, a thing to manipulate being subjected to conditions. Joy and zeal found in life is dampered if not made void entirely. The motivated spirit to take on new efforts and enthusiasm for new adventures is lacking because all is seen, and surprises or things prepared for are already revealed.

5. Addiction. Similar to temptations which have the ability to form into addictions, it is evident, there are several phases to the use of the remote application. The first phase is usually human inquisitiveness. A person is easily convinced of the idea of how enticing it would be to view another person’s life, hiding behind the screen of a remote device. The second phase of remote viewing is scrutiny. The spy begins to seek out oddities, errors, and flaws in the other person. The third phase of remote viewing is mockery. From these perceived discrepancies, the spy becomes disenchanted with the person and may even share negative attributes with others. Somewhere between phase 1 and 3 there is guilt associated with their actions. If the spy comes across the victim in public, there is usually a feeling of anger toward the victim or avoidance because of their spying. The fourth phase of remote viewing, which can happen at any stage, is addiction and dedication to the device. The pretend relationship psychologically becomes an actual relationship to the viewer. The fifth phase of remote viewing is fulfilling sexual needs fostered by the viewing the victim’s life. They may go to the extent of finding them in person and raping them, molesting them, or zooming in on sexual parts. Monetarily, it opens the door for a business of selling views to others for the same reason of inquisitiveness and entertainment. The human worth is dissolved to nothing but an object of entertainment.

The Psychosocial Impact
This poses the question, why people wouldn’t want to enjoy others but choose to spy on them instead. As a form of psychological abuse, those using remote viewing seem to possess social dysfunctional developmental issues. Many who currently are using remote viewing are between the ages of 35-70, well past the age range for when social maturity would be expected. An influential American psychologist, Erik Erikson, studied the development of humans in a social context. Taking a look at Erikson’s study with relation to remote spying proves psychosocial development is lacking in these users of remote viewing applications. While as adults they most likely have knowledge of how to interact with others in a healthy manner, their approach is contorted and damaging to good psychosocial skills interacting with others and in their own maturity.

Is this behavior evident of social immaturity for these adults or is this a contorted response to already learned psychosocial skills which they are using knowingly as a form of abuse? When a distortion to natural processes exists, there usually is crime, addiction, or disability. With full knowledge of what they are doing, this behavior is both immaturity, criminal, and can easily lead to addiction. These criminal-addicts are confused with their identity and lack confidence of interacting in a healthy manner with other people. They are confused and insecure about themselves much as pre-teens might be in their developmental stage of learning about themselves and how to interact within the world they live within. While this is not acceptable at any age, by the time a person is middle age or older, their psychosocial developmental stage should already be at an advanced stage of maturity.

Erikson’s Psychosocial Developmental Study
Erikson in his study of psychosocial development determined there are 8 stages which exist during the lifespan of a human from the time of birth through old age. The stages include Trust vs. Mistrust, Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt, Initiative vs.Guilt, Industry vs. Inferiority, Identity vs. Role Confusion, Intimacy vs. Isolation, Generativity vs. Stagnation, and Integrity vs. Despair. These stages describe the process a person goes through to reach adulthood, by learning how to interact with others and develop their personal identity, over the course of their life. Taking a closer look at the stages of this study can help understand developmental issues in the individuals who are addicted to using remote viewing and analyze where in these stages their maturity is lacking.

Trust vs. Mistrust – Infancy stage. Erikson sets this as the first stage of a person’s individual stage of development which occurs from birth through 18 months. Within this time, a person learns to trust others and learns that the world is a safe place. Rather than adding to a person’s safe environment, the spy creates mistrust in an individual’s life. Invading upon an individual’s personal boundaries, the spy uses remote viewing develops mistrust in a person who already understands trust and healthy interactions between people. They use this mistrust as a foundation to prevent relationships from forming and to crumble existing relationships. Friends, family, significant others, employers or anyone else who uses remote viewing to watch another person, immediately begins to cause mistrust to the relationship or potential relationship. Viewing another remotely watching their personal life without permission is a form of dishonesty, stealing, violation, and deception. In this first stage, the relationship is already disintegrating once the remote device is first used. If permission is granted by the party being watched, trust would still exist because boundaries would be respected. Since the spy is not given permission by the individual, it is a violation and creates distrust.

Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt – Early Childhood stage. In this stage, Erikson explains children who are 2-3 years old are developing a greater sense of self-control. As it relates to remote viewing, the spy does the exact opposite striving to destroy the self-control of the victim. Their ultimate desire is to obtain control and power over the person they are watching. They monitor all actions throughout the day to the very minute detail. Details are shared as concerns with others. They discuss any observation with others as if it were a group of parents watching a child needing to make decisions for them even in the smallest matter. Everyday decisions and actions by the victim are observed and are even verbally ordered by the person spying. Examples of this may be telling the victim what clothes to wear, what to eat, instructing personal routines and habits, critiquing weight, finding anything to nit-pick at and cutdown. In their desire to acquire all knowledge, they seek any opportunity to create shame and shame the person to others. It may not even be shameful activity which they shame. The spy understands shame as a means of power over the person they watch. There is no realization or importance of independence and responsibility of the adult. The spy seeks to try to destroy trust, confidence, the independence in the adult victim to gain a sense of power over the person.

Initiative vs. Guilt – Ages 3-5. The third stage in Erikson’s stages of development is where children learn the difference between good and bad, how to interact socially with others, the ability to make decisions, and how to lead others. Using remote viewing, the spy seeks to destroy initiative in the person they spy upon. The try to cause a sense of guilt in the victim by chiding any actions they disagree with. They break down self-motivation and confidence. They create a significant amount of limitations for what the victim can do discouraging any initiatives and effort. Doors are closed on any attempts to find a way out of a seemingly blocked situation telling the victim they are worthless.

Industry vs. Inferiority – Ages 6-11. In this stage, children learn the value of work, realize their successes and achievements, and their failures. They develop a sense of self-confidence. Using a remote means to view, the spy communicates to the victim all the many flaws they see, that they are an outcast, and that they do not belong in society. Whatever they look like, who they are as a person, their work, and whatever they do is seen as inferior. The spy then communicates the person’s perceived personal failures and inadequate work ability to sway the views of the community, which results in blocking the individually socially and professionally. The victim is painted as an outcast possessing no capabilities to contribute to society in any way whether personally, through relationships with others, volunteer work, paid work, or any initiatives. They are without a doubt categorized as an outcast and treated as such.

Identity vs. Role Confusion – Ages 12-18. In the 5th stage of ego development according to Erikson, a person establishes their personal identity and how they fit into society. The spy redefines the identity of the association of adult-to adult to superior-over-dysfunctional. It might be better understood as adult-over-child, although the person being watched is fully mature, responsible, able to function and is not a child. The spy seeks control and power and does not recognize the victim as fully independent or capable as a human. The victim, in the spy’s opinion, does not fit into society.

Intimacy vs. Isolation – Age 19-40. In this stage, the person learns how to have intimate relationships with others and establish their life together with others away from absolute loneliness and isolation. In this stage, humans grow in closeness, honesty, and trust with another. Using the remote device, the spy redefines relationships and intimacy by what they see on screen, much like being engrossed in a movie. They see the device as a true social interaction. The relationship to them exists while the person being viewed may not have even met the person spying or have any interaction with those who spy. What the spy views without permission, they use for the fulfillment of a need for a human relationship and personal sexual gratification. For most, this becomes an addiction, devoid of the human person’s presence.  A fake relationship develops in their mind, and so advances in realness, that the person is inclined to not think twice of progressing further with crimes of rape and molestation, fulfilling their desires, still not knowing the person nor having permission. They keep the victim in isolation, unable to meet other people. They discourage verbally overhead any other solicitations of acquaintances to the victim. If not swayed from association, new acquaintances are given remote viewing access to ensure discouraging further association. The remote viewing is the only relationship that exists as the victim is unwillingly watched by many people.

Generativity vs. Stagnation – Age 40-65. In this middle adulthood stage, there is a desire to contribute to the world and be involved with the community and society. Using the remote device, live views are sold out to create a community of more spies to watch the person’s personal life. Recorded views, and real-time view spots, are sold for additional money to feed curiosity, addictions, and mockery. While generating more video footage to sell to others, the spy thrives on building their own personal popularity to the community with what they sell. At the same time, they stagnate the life of the victim socially by turning their life and any nudity into an exploited show to watch and monetize. Work is also stagnated for the victim with any contribution to society whether paid, volunteer, initiative to the good of others terminated. The victim’s work and efforts are discouraged, blocked, and anti-promoted. Propaganda spread to the community leads to further isolation and stagnation for the victim deeming them indefinitely unwanted by society and unwelcome. Any effort for them to succeed or be incorporated into society is truncated.

Integrity vs. Despair – Age 65 to death. In this final stage, an individual reflects on whether their life was meaningful or if they have regrets over the life they’ve lived. They have a sense of fulfillment or despair. Those who use the remote device cause years to be lost, a sense of disparity, lack of dignity and worth, and detachment of the individual from society. The individual’s life only exists for the purpose of being exploited. The person they spy on is to them nothing but a waste of human life, and not just to them, but to all they speak of the person to. There is no future where one is watched 24/7 in a psychologically abusive environment, nor in one that extends to the community at large. Work and personal growth are controlled. This ability extends insomuch as to control life entirely with complete restrictions other than existence. Although the victim attempts many ways to achieve successes and progress despite a restrictive and monitored environment, the efforts are for naught, and as a result despair is likely to occur.

Moral Implications of Remote Viewing
Remote viewing affects the normal and healthy, psychosocial existence of an individual transforming their environment into one of abuse. Using the remote viewing affects human relationships while also affecting the life of an individual to make the private life of the individual public, disregarding their human dignity, and ultimately wasting the individuals worth and life. Rather than build up human worth in others and foster healthy human relationships, they seek to destroy morale and worth. They are satisfied only by the image on a screen, using it to the ruin of the victim as well as themselves. Beyond Erikson’s findings or any other behavioral model by other renowned psychologists, these spies do not follow the moral model of the universal teachings of religions which believe in the value of human dignity and worth, and goodwill for others. These people seek to destroy others and the joy they should experience in everyday life interacting with others. They tear at an individual’s unique worth of existence, ability to create, ability to contribute to society, and their reserved private space needed to nourish their spirit and person. In all essence the people using the remote device pretend to be God and destroy the God in other people by mutilating human dignity. 

Any religion would agree that a human should not seek to attain equality to God. It would also be agreed upon that human dignity and worth should be given to all people. Furthermore, robbing and stealing is not part of following any moral law either. We are not meant to be watched. Only God has absolute knowledge of every detail of our life. Any human who strives to do this is morally breaking the commandment of being in competition with God, attracted to the desire of having all knowledge, all control, and all power over a human. God gives humans freedom, whereas the spy who in many ways acts as God with God-like access, restricts freedom. God gives worth and human value, whereas the spy tears down an individual. As people we are called to be in community with each other, working together, loving each other, and building up each other. The spy strives to pull a person out of the community, subject them to isolation, and breeds hate and contempt from the population. God gives each person unique gifts and attributes to share with others, whereas the spy steals attributes and tries to create a society where all have the same attributes, or one where the more affluent can have all attributes of any person, while the victim is stripped of all attributes they have. Besides being highly offensive and destructive to the individual, the spy is morally being offensive and destructive to God and His Creation.

Remote viewing undermines human relationships and the human dignity of life. If permission is not granted, a person should not be watched. Behavioral patterns, personal attributes and abilities are unique to each individual which should be appreciated and treasured, rather than stripped behind a device that redefines the person as an object of entertainment to be scorned and annihilated. Humans need personal space to be able to function naturally and interact with others. Privacy is necessary for creativity, for motivation, to put forth our ability, to have a healthy degree of self-confidence and independency as an adult, to grow as individuals, to heal, to be intimate with others, to be genuine, to be loving people, to have joy in life, and ultimately to survive.


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The Signs of Communication

With communication today, two extremities of communication exist: self-expression and speaking with discretion. Self-expression, or speaking openly on any topic without much censorship or use of etiquette, is common by most of the population. The second, opposite extreme, is speaking with discretion and saying very little in order to preserve one’s reputation. This is more typical of professionals and anyone of class, although it may not necessarily always the case. How are either of these improving the way we communicate? How are both of these skewing the line of civilized communication?

Self-Expression
The first extreme of communication is self-expression which has become an acceptable way to communicate today for most Americans. Unlike other countries, the United States does not have laws against hate speech. What a person says has no societal limitations in most settings. With this increase in self-expression, and decrease in societal parameters for civilized speech, the majority of the population feels they can say whatever they want—and for the most part they do. There is little thought put into what is said. Rather than considering how what is communicated might hurt or offend another, the priority is placed on voicing opinions without discretion, using uncivilized expressions, and being heard.

In the past, social standards influenced improper communication. In Roman and Greek cultures, speaking was seen as an art which had to be mastered before a person was given the right to speak on a topic. It could take years to master becoming an orator. The aspiring speaker had to first learn the art by studying the writings of philosophers, mastering grammar, and learning how to speak. In more modern times, within the United States, social standards set the acceptability of civilized speech and good etiquette. Even a minor comment could eliminate a person from social circles. Differences of opinion could certainly make for a worthy topic of discussion. However, being cordial was expected at a minimum for more vivacious discussions which could lead to arguments. It was possible for people to be accepted, although they might have differing opinions, and still be valued and respected with human dignity.

Within the last 50 years, there has been a shift to self-expression. The ability to say whatever is on a person’s mind is acceptable whether in person or online. There are hardly any limits to what a person may speak about. Open communication is seen as a way to provide transparency and the “honest story” of any person or situation. While this has many benefits, it crosses a line when dignity is stepped upon and boundaries are crossed. Consideration is necessary before speaking with regards to whom a person is talking to, if the topic is appropriate, and the choice of respectful words which are said for a pleasant conversation. Talking about anything can be very damaging. In fact, much of what people talk about has veered away from “ideas” and “intellectual topics”. Instead, what is more common is digressive speech such as gossip or speaking of topics which are inappropriate, very personal or sensitive in nature, or comments which might advertise the negative rather than focus on the positive. There is no preservation of the human dignity of a person. What needs to be said, is what is said, regardless of how it may hurt or offend the other person.

On social networks, a simple post can flare up into a war of replies within seconds. This trolling is often classified inaccurately as a “discussion” and “freedom of speech”. It would be better described as intolerance for a different view which triggers others chiming in to counter the post with an escalating degree of negativity and close-mindedness. These can occur even on simple posts that may not have any intent to attract opinions, but which result in a soapbox of negative, heated, responses. While self-expression allows for openness and problem solving, it can also open the door for adversity. Communication on digressive topics, and intentionally creating unnecessary conflict are examples of unhealthy communication. Speaking about anything without consideration of another person is rude and uncivilized.

The Power of Silence
The other extreme for communication is to choose to say very little or to remain silent. By speaking cautiously a person is more likely to preserve their good reputation. It also provides safety, by finding no partiality to any party or issue. The person remains politically correct by withholding an opinion. In many spiritual teachings, silence is perceived as golden. By remaining silent, a person can reflect wisdom. Remaining silent, a person does not reveal what they know or do not know. Likewise, by not speaking, there is less of a chance of speaking in an unintelligent manner, speaking offensively, or divulging information which should not be revealed. Remaining silent is also a way to absorb heated conflict, inappropriate speech, and to buy in time to respond with a more thoughtful response.

There is a time and a place to speak. George Washington said, “If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter”.  While we should speak out rather than remain silent on situations of injustice, on political views or ways that may affect our life, saying less, rather than more can be a way which contributes to civility. Voicing an opinion without consideration, can breed hate more than solve problems. This is where uncivilized speech occurs. In today’s culture, it is more likely that the freedom of speech is taken too far through the self-expression of uncivilized conversation. Self-expression can be the ignition of unnecessary conflict just to express an opinion. When freedom of speech is taken to this extreme, responding with silence can help swing the equilibrium of communication, bringing it back to more peaceful speech and civilized communication. Knowing when to speak and when not to speak is important.

Finding the Balance with Human Dignity and Respect
Some social and professional settings still have standards for communication, although uncivilized speech is more popular. Realizing that there is a place for self-expression while maintaining a standard for civilized communication is the challenge which we face today. Many do not recognize digressive communication. Being desensitized by the current standard, hardly anyone today questions inappropriate speech which is on the tongues of most and found in media and by leaders. If culture continues to accept digressive speech, it is a reflection on our country, acceptability for digression and lack of etiquette, and is an insult to the right to the Freedom of Speech which we have. The First Amendment was created for Americans to speak up for freedom and liberties for all. With an acceptability of hate speech and speaking on digressive topics, society is infected with negativity, hate, unacceptability, intolerance for differences, immaturity, a lack of professionalism, and lack of human dignity. It shows an inability to communicate and interact with others. For a country which prides itself on being a melting pot, this is not congruent. Although not everyone will get along, there needs to be a greater degree of respect for differences whether it is race, belief, lifestyle, ability, economic or any other characteristic. Valuing differences and human life needs a higher tolerance and acceptance. Inequality will always exist, but human dignity needs to be upheld. Since the primary problem of unacceptability stems from inappropriate speech, correcting communication that is off-balance can help set society upright to a culture with a civilized standard.


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Sex Trafficking and the Perils of Privacy Invasion

Technology has helped position the sex trafficking industry as a lucrative market since the first sex website launched online in 1994. Since then, the online sex trafficking industry has grown, offering more options for buying and selling people into sex slavery and a smorgasbord of illicit, sexual services to clients all over the globe. The process is simple and streamlined with its transactions, leaving those involved virtually untraceable. Sex traffickers can easily generate revenue by posting services and enticing clients with a variety of digital content to meet specific requests—all at the expense and damage of those involuntarily expected to perform.

The Online Market for Traffickers
Conducting business online is a quick way to manage trafficking with less of a chance of being caught. It’s the ideal marketing playground for sex; sellers can reach specific target audiences with online advertising, and buyers can search for sexual services as a match for their needs. For sellers, posting online sex trafficking ads is an inexpensive way to find women and children to be bought and sold for sex services. For buyers, it is impossible to distinguish between online ads offering services they seek and those which involve unwilling trafficked women and children as participants. Exploding with an exploitation of minors, 100,000 websites exist that are dedicated to child pornography. In addition to advertising minors for sex, Backpage.com, which has since been shut down, was netting $150 million in revenue per year from adult service ads and was the source of 73% of child trafficking cases (Equality Now, 2020). Craigslist also ranks high as a way for online sex traffickers to remain anonymous while soliciting business. Fortunately, as sites use more advanced methods of artificial intelligence and laws are enforced, online advertisements have a greater chance of being detected and removed.

Footage and Footprints of Live-Streamed Sessions
Responding to ads posted online, buyers find sellers online who offer live-streamed sessions. Chat sessions using webcams are used to build a virtual relationship between the performer and client. An online relationship is established, enticing continual business with promises of eventually meeting the person. Victims who are exploited are forced to be on camera to put on a “show,” which brings in $20–$150 on average to the seller. Even children are offered a small amount of money to be part of nightly “shows” (International Observatory Human Rights, 2019). Buyers search online for children within a certain age range or who have a certain appearance. The seller provides live footage for them to view based on what they are looking for. Sex trafficking is a global issue, but in the United States alone, 21% of those who are victim to sex exploitation are children, with 63% of videos containing children under the age of 8 years old (Nuix, 2019). The ease of digital platforms has opened up ways for online advertising, marketing and communication to help bring in more sales and deliver content to buyers.

The Dangers of Other Online Sexual Content
Feeding addictions, curiosity and loneliness, cybersex trafficking provides sexual content and views to buyers for their visual pleasure, satiating their sexual perversions. Women and children who are used as slaves for the business are exploited, forced to engage in cybersex activities out of fear of abuse or other threats by sex traffickers. Online content and interactions include chat sessions, photos, recorded videos, live-streamed webcam videos and sex camming, where the buyer watches in real time and can request performances (Fight the New Drug, 2019). Selling sexual content can be highly profitable for sellers. It is not unusual for a live sex video to bring in $400 in 45 minutes. The victims, while of high value to the sellers, are treated as worthless. Young women who have been coerced into this sex business seldom receive money for sexual services but are used for traffickers to make money received by clients. Many are beaten if they do not cooperate and some are forced to have sex 20–48 times per day (Trafficked No More). Sex trafficking is a global concern as the Internet is used to transfer sexual content worldwide.

A Focus on Sex Camming and Trafficking Using Remote Drones
Another method for traffickers is using unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, to record live video of involuntary victims (Brookings, 2014). Thanks to aerial surveillance and remote applications, the target is able to be accessed live from anywhere. Even indoors within their own home, victims’ privacy is compromised while showering, undressing, using the toilet, having sex or just existing and the feed is streamed in full color with the ability for buyers to hear and speak to the victim. There is a limitless range to the accessibility of victims because they can be reached in any building and even outdoors in tents or at parks—anywhere electricity can be conducted, even through poles or trees outdoors. Friends or family members select the victim as the target without the victim’s permission. Additional recorded views are available online for purchase. Likewise, technology offers buyers the ability to X-ray the victim remotely to see through clothing and view inside the body to watch organs function and even interact with laser radiation to buzz them or pinpoint intimate body parts with a laser as they sleep. This form of sexual abuse and exploitation is nearly impossible to trace, and anyone can be made victim to this pervasive surveillance—anywhere and at any time—all for the benefit of those who have a device to invade others’ privacy for income and views. Although legislation is passed regulating the use of drones by the government, the general public being able to use drones as a means for trafficking is a concern that is overlooked.

Aperture With Legislation and Restrictions
In 2017, the government began to place a greater emphasis on online sex trafficking by passing the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act (FOSTA). This marked significant progress in establishing legislation for social networks, causing them to have a greater responsibility to censor content posted and sex trafficking advertisements. Victims can find hope for justice as social network providers face tighter restrictions and heightened accountability.

 

References

Brookings. McNeal, G. (2014, November). Drones and aerial surveillance: Considerations for legislatures. Retrieved from https://www.brookings.edu/research/drones-and-aerial-surveillance-considerations-for-legislatures/amp

Equality Now. (2020). Human Trafficking & Online Prostitution Advertising. Retrieved from https://www.equalitynow.org/interrupting_the_vicious_cycle_of_online_sex_trafficking

Equality Now. (2020). Interrupting the Vicious Cycle of Online Sex Trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.equalitynow.org/interrupting_the_vicious_cycle_of_online_sex_trafficking

Fight the New Drug. (2019, April 11). Uncovering the Dark World of Trafficking in the Webcamming Industry. Retrieved from https://fightthenewdrug.org/uncovering-secret-world-trafficking-camming-industry

International Observatory Human Rights. Allen, C. (2019, March 7). The Role of the Internet on Sex Trafficking. Retrieved from https://observatoryihr.org/blog/the-role-of-the-internet-on-sex-trafficking

Nuix. (2019, July 16). Pogue, C. Continuing the Fight Against Cybersex Trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.nuix.com/blog/continuing-fight-against-cybersex-trafficking

Trafficked No More. Sex Trafficking States. Retrieved from http://traffickednomore.org//warning-signs/sex-trafficking-stats

Written for One Bread Foundation, Inc., June 2020


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The U.S. Response to Sex Trafficking

Sex, which should be an act of love between a man and woman, has an entirely different meaning from a business standpoint. For most, the word “prostitution” comes to mind when sex and business are associated together. However, one of the largest issues when it comes to illegal sexual activity is the crime of sex trafficking. Sex trafficking involves using force or coercion to make an adult or minor engage in commercial sex acts in exchange for money, food, shelter, drugs or possessions. Sex traffickers force an individual to provide sexual acts, which can include escort services, sex in illicit massage storefronts, outdoor solicitation, pornography, personal sexual servitude, interactive cybersex acts or as companionship at bars and clubs (Polaris). With an estimated 4.8 million victims of sex trafficking worldwide, the United States surpasses other countries with the number of consumers of sex trafficking averaging 400,000 per year according to the Global Slavery Index (Reuters, 2019). As an industry that is illegal and immoral, the benefits from the business yields a revenue stream of $100 billion per year at the expense of the thousands of victims forced to perform (Time, 2014). As a response to the sex trafficking concerns in the U.S., the government is passing more legislation for the various kinds of trafficking that exist and specific demographics that are affected by it. Several advocacy programs and non-profit organizations also reach out in response, with resources for victims and to drive awareness to the problem.

Who It Affects and How It Works
Preying on the vulnerable and the desperate, sex traffickers often target those who are in seemingly hopeless situations. They often prey on individuals who have suffered from previous kinds of abuse, are impoverished and/or have a low level of education. The majority of victims are female adults, children from foster homes and runaways. Sex traffickers seek out those who they can coerce and force into sex. Different from prostitution, which is at the will of the party involved, these individuals are involuntarily used for sex. Sex traffickers use women, men and children as slaves, forcing them to perform sexual services for clients. Often the victims are solicited from social circles or within the neighborhood and taken to hotels or massage salons where they are used (Reuters, 2019). Trafficking services are less likely to be traced because most transactions are done by cash. Of those who are caught, 90% of victims are arrested for selling sex, while less than 10% of buyers are arrested (USIAHT, 2020). Online advertisements have also played a role in sex trafficking, advertising online sex opportunities to vulnerable people as a way for them to escape from their current situation.

The Response 
As a global issue, countries throughout the world, including the United States, have established laws against trafficking, which is considered a form of slavery. The federal government has increased efforts to prevent sex trafficking by passing legislation that addresses various sectors of sex trafficking. In 2000, the Trafficking Victims Prevention Act (TVPA) was passed to define human trafficking victims as a person induced to perform labor or a commercial sex act through force, fraud, or coercion. It protects undocumented immigrants who are victims of severe trafficking and violence and also provides protection specifically for those under the age of 18. Within the last 10 years, there has been an increase in legislation as the sex trafficking industry has grown. The Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act of 2014 was passed to decrease trafficking among children in the foster care system and to assist locating runaways. Statistics show that once children are on the street, they are solicited for sex within 72 hours (Human Trafficking Advocacy, 2020). This Act helps locate children and protect them from the dangers of becoming involved in sex trafficking. The following year, in 2015, the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA) of 2015 was introduced to support victim assistance, provide rehabilitation services, serve fines to offenders, other anti-sex trafficking efforts and an increase in liability for buyers of commercial sex. In 2018, in response to online sex trafficking, President Trump signed the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act (FOSTA) to combat online sex services (NY Post, 2018). Websites such as Craigslist and other webpages facilitating sex trafficking by listing victims to be bought and sold are now subjected to liability with tighter restrictions in effect (The Verge, 2018). This bill helps curtail Internet hubs that allow for posting or advertising illegal sexual services and sharing sexual content. The government has increased measures to lessen trafficking, but catching trafficking can be complicated as it is hard to trace those involved. However, this increase in legislation brings hope to victims who have been trafficked.  

In addition to legislation, several nonprofit organizations are resources for women and children who are survivors of sex trafficking. They help victims recover from the psychological and physical trauma of slavery and abuse. Advocacy groups help victims learn the difference between healthy and unhealthy relationships and bring awareness of the problem to the community. By receiving education as well as counseling, survivors are able to face what they lived through and find healing from what they experienced.

 

 

References

Human Trafficking Awareness and Advocacy Group. (2020). Working To Make a Difference. Retrieved from http://www.humantraffickingadvocacy.org

NY Post. Fonrouge, G. (2018, April 11). Trump signs law against online sex trafficking. Retrieved from https://nypost.com/2018/04/11/trump-signs-law-against-online-sex-trafficking

Polaris. The Typology of Modern Slavery: Defining Sex and Labor Trafficking in the United States. [PDF File]. Retrieved from http://www.heatwatch.org/human_trafficking/sex_trafficking#2

Reuters. (2019, December 9). Top hotels sued for ‘industry-wide failures’ to prevent U.S. sex trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-trafficking-hotels-usa-idUSKBN1YE074

Time. Luscome, E. (2014, May 20). Inside the Scarily Lucrative Business Model of Human Trafficking. Retrieved from https://time.com/105360/inside-the-scarily-lucrative-business-model-of-human-trafficking

The Verge. Robertson, A. (2018, April 11). Trump signs anti-trafficking law that weakens online free speech protections. Retrieved from https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/11/17223720/trump-signs-fosta-sesta-sex-trafficking-section-230-law

U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking. (2020). It’s Time to Eliminate Demand. Retrieved from https://usiaht.org

Written for One Bread Foundation, Inc., June 2020


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Sex Trafficking of Children in the United States:
Overview and Issues for Congress (CRS Reports)

by Congressional Research Service

Confronting Commercial Sexual Exploitation and Sex Trafficking of Minors in the United States: A Guide for the Health Care Sector
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by Jonathan Todres and Angela Diaz


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