Sunday, May 04, 2008


My readers thought that the guy in Oklahoma City who videotapes customers soliciting prostitutes and then posts the video on his Web site, in an effort to expose these men to public shame, is out of line.

"If this man is into humiliating bad behavior to discourage it, and not just exploiting it, the same as the solicitor himself," writes Robin Brooks of Fullerton, Calif., "then he should approach them, tell them that they have been filmed and ask them to sign a release, as would anyone else using the picture of a stranger as a model for monetary gain."

Charlie Seng, of Lancaster, S.C., agrees.

"As with most do-gooders and busybodies," Seng writes, "this guy who videotapes supposed clients of prostitutes should be taken off the streets and put in jail for being a public nuisance."

"Let's hope that none of us who have ever gotten lost in a big city and asked a stranger for directions get photographed by a creep trying to capture people talking to strangers so he can sell the video," writes Jan Bohren of Croton-on-Hudson, N.Y. "This is a pretty lame occupation, don't you think? Does the phrase `get a life' ring a bell?"

Check out other opinions at "I Know What You Did Last Night," or post your own or post your own by clicking on "comments" or "post a comment" below.

Jeffrey L. Seglin, author of The Right Thing: Conscience, Profit and Personal Responsibility in Today's Business and The Good, the Bad, and Your Business: Choosing Right When Ethical Dilemmas Pull You Apart, is an associate professor at Emerson College in Boston, where he teaches writing and ethics. He is also the administrator of The Right Thing, a Web log focused on ethical issues.

Do you have ethical questions that you need answered? Send them to or to "The Right Thing," The New York Times Syndicate, 500 Seventh Avenue, 8th floor, New York, NY 10018. Please remember to tell me who you are, where you're from, as well as where you read the column.

c.2008 The New York Times Syndicate (Distributed by The New York Times Syndicate)


Anonymous said...

Self righteousness always nauseates me. Where do these sad people get off on running [or ruining] others' lives? If these misguided souls want to do something, why don't they go to Africa and care for people dying of AIDS? Perhaps then they will get a perspective on life and do something useful and truly righteous.Jerry Wright, San Juan Capistrano

Brian Bates said...

I guess actually taking the time to inquire directly to the source just wasn't 'ethical' enough for this blogs author?

I also love how you draw a consensus from a whopping 6 comments - Completely ignoring the thousands of comments on YouTube praising my efforts.

What makes you think there have been no arrests from my activism? In reality, public record shows dozens of arrests and convictions.

If you are going to shine a light on an issue and then solicit comments, you should at the very least make some attempt to accurately describe the topic. You might even consider requesting a bit of Q&A from the source.

Brian Bates said...

How about the topic of stealing someone's graphics off their website without consent? Gotta love the hypocrits of the world.