Unless you spent your weekend in a wi-fi free cave, you’ve probably heard of the whole debacle involving the YouTuber, Sam Pepper’s, latest ‘prank’…
If you were in said cave, here’s what happened: Basically, Pepper walked the streets armed with a fake hand; and then proceeded to grope random attractive girls in the street with one of his real hands, before blaming it on innocent bystanders. After that, he forced the girls into a hug. All of this he filmed and uploaded to YouTube as his latest video entitled ‘Fake Hand Ass Pinch Prank’. Nice…
It’s worth noting that the video has since been deleted from YouTube, however, it’s already caused a significant amount of damage to Sam’s reputation.
The hashtag ‘ReportSamPepper’ has been trending at the weekend on an international scale. YouTubers from across the world have also been vocal in opposing this video. Pepper’s even been banned from the huge YouTube event VidCon as a result.
Now, don’t get me wrong, Pepper may have made a stupid mistake, but he’s in the public eye and any mistake is going to be magnified significantly. The fact that he seemingly uses his position as someone who’s ‘Internet famous’ to force himself on random women is a serious issue that needs to be addressed. There’s a sense of entitlement that emanates from his videos: That he gets what he wants because he’s Sam Pepper of YouTube.
Maybe Sam has totally misjudged this whole situation and genuinely never meant to cause any harm, but the silence that has since prevailed has spoken volumes. He has completely failed to acknowledge anything or, despite a huge Internet backlash, apologise.
In a self-appointed position of fame like he’s in, he needs to stand up and be a responsible role-model. What kind of example is he setting to his viewers? ‘It’s okay to grope women, as long as you say it’s a joke!’
I’ll be honest, I’d never even heard of him until quite recently. I saw him as a guest on an E4 panel show and they showed a clip of one of his other videos: The one where he wanders the streets kissing random girls. I was a little perplexed by that and I’m not going to lie, I thought it was a little bit iffy.
We shouldn’t be living in a world where it’s okay to grope random people in the street under the guise of ‘comedy’.
It’s not funny that at least one of those women featured in the video was visibly distressed. She uttered more than once that she didn’t like it… Yet Pepper still uploaded this footage. Why? I’ve no idea…
…If this video is deemed socially acceptable then it perpetuates the patriarchal myth that women are nothing but sex objects.
Thankfully, the consequent backlash proves that it’s not a respectable thing to do and that it definitely won’t be tolerated.
To the people who think this is just a harmless joke, imagine it’s your mother, sister, girlfriend or daughter that’s getting groped by a random stranger. You’d be furious wouldn’t you? So why should it be alright if it’s in the name of ‘comedy’?
I’ll calm down now. I promise.