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Harvey Weinstein and other Hollywood predators


kerraig UK
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Ultimately, if the perpetrator is a rich and powerful male and the legal system (and its statute of limitations if you're working in Hollywood) is against you, the only possible recourse you have is through the media. This is absolutely open to abuse; by publishers, journalists, mentally ill, jilted lovers, other significant 'players' in whatever industry or political environment we're talking about and whole long list of other things.

 

This is where the imbalance exists most heavily against men/the accused. Mix it in with a 24 hour news cycle and us living in a society where paediatricians are lynched from their homes because it sounds a bit like paedophile and that's where I think it's a really challenging and difficult argument to bottom out. But, if you're a woman in that world, what other option do you have?

 

Interestingly, though, if your attacker wasn't a rich male who is in the public eye, it strikes me this approach doesn't really solve any of the systemic problems that exist within society and our judicial system. There's already media fatigue surrounding it.

 

The legal system is the legal system. The way such cases and accusations are handled needs to change, the law needs to change and (to mixed degrees based on location and culture) it appears to have done over the past 30 years. In the UK I think we've moved from 'no means no' to 'could the victim actually say yes?' and put all onus on the accused to be certain they are doing the right thing. I suspect that's on paper and as we've seen with Evans, the way such cases are handled is still a travesty in practice.

 

I'm not sure wanting to have the discussion and debate about legal burdens of proof - particularly in the wider picture we're seeing here where the scope of behaviour people are being accused of and the impact it's had on the victims is incredibly wide (though I'm really not suggesting we have debate about 'what is rape?') - means people are automatically misogynistic, rapist defending advocates of the status quo, though.

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I think we can take the starting position of believing survivors who make allegations unless we have a reason not to, without naming the accused until after conviction unless there is a large amount of corroborating evidence. But particularly in the USA where there is a statute of limitations that allows even more perpetrators to get away with it, we should also be able to name and shame without a conviction where there is that weight of corroborating evidence (with the risk of defamation proceedings if the allegations are spurious). We should also change the narrative so that it is the evidence that is important, not the history or presentation of the person making the report, and close down this spurious argument that allegations are false until proven true, and the victim probably a liar by default.

 

30 minutes ago, NickC said:

So, as we have no good reason to disbelieve the accusers, why should we try to keep them quiet? We should make our rules and norms based on the 97%, not the 3%. Will there be a very occasional miscarriage of justice? Yes. But to hold back the 97%, as they have been held back in the past and continue to be held back because of the threat of legal action or public shaming, just doesn't make sense. 

Miscarriages of justice in relation to false allegations are exceptionally rare. The vast majority of that 3% are under social pressure to report the crime, but ultimately don't pursue it, or are people with serious histories of false claims, or have an implausible story (where the police wouldn't pursue it). There are very very few cases in which a false allegation has led to a prosecution, let alone a conviction. Whilst terrible, they are statistically negligible.

 

Remember that the whole justice system is (rightly) weighted to prevent false positives. "Beyond reasonable doubt" means that for a criminal conviction the burden of proof is very high*. And combined with the barriers to reporting sexual crimes, and the low proportion that reach proper investigations, prosecutions and convictions the rate of conviction for sex crimes is less than 1% of perpetrators. And that is without the power differential of these celebrity cases and workplace harassment. I think that the current picture is too far skewed in the direction of too many people getting away with awful behaviour for far too long, and the recent examples in which there are massive numbers of allegations once the dam of secrecy breaks mean we need to make changes in how these crimes are dealt with in the public dialogue and prosecution system. That doesn't mean that I think the burden of proof for criminal conviction should be below "beyond reasonable doubt", just that we need changes in the systems that enable victims to speak up, and evidence from multiple sources to be compiled rather than each example to have to reach the threshold alone - and I think post Savile we have made some positive steps in that direction that have, for example allowed convictions of gangs of men who sexually exploit vulnerable teenagers like those in Rotherham.

 

*interestingly, for the pragmatic day to day decisions (like whether a child is safe within a particular family, and civil claims for compensation) the threshold is much lower, "on the balance of probabilities". So it is really common for there to be a finding that someone has abused a child in civil court, and appropriate protective action to be taken on the basis of that finding, whilst not reaching the threshold for a criminal prosecution or conviction.

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1 hour ago, grindmouse said:

@Stanley if in your mind it's a simple binary choice, then believe what you will.

 

@geekette You got me, I hate women and children.

I just found it odd than when the stoey about Stallone broke you chose to counter it with your own account of a woman falsely accusing men you knew of sexual offences, and being mentally ill.

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1 hour ago, Pelekophoros said:

Ultimately, if the perpetrator is a rich and powerful male and the legal system (and its statute of limitations if you're working in Hollywood) is against you, the only possible recourse you have is through the media. This is absolutely open to abuse; by publishers, journalists, mentally ill, jilted lovers, other significant 'players' in whatever industry or political environment we're talking about and whole long list of other things.

 

This is where the imbalance exists most heavily against men/the accused. Mix it in with a 24 hour news cycle and us living in a society where paediatricians are lynched from their homes because it sounds a bit like paedophile and that's where I think it's a really challenging and difficult argument to bottom out. But, if you're a woman in that world, what other option do you have?

 

 

 

I think there's something here to look at in that if someone is found guilty of a crime of a sexual nature the current treatment is throw them out of work / exlie them / throw them into jail where they'll get raped and killed themselves.

 

So the punishment is so severe that most people are afraid of making some sort of mistake. So unlike other cimes it's easier to blame the victim, or at least doubt them. There's a gross sort of prisoner's dilemma at work. If one believes the victim then there's the risk of an innocent person being punished. However by blaming the victim, or demanding absolute concrete proof (which is difficult) then at the very worst the hurt damaged party remains hurt and damaged but we don't face the risk of punishing an innocent.

 

Of course that assumes that each incident is treated as a one off. The problem as we can see from the Loius CK case is that women aren't believed and they find other ways to cope. Like leaving the industry.  And this is what we need to improve on, being able to identify potential serial sex offenders early. And that isn't going to happen if we just dismiss women speaking out. Because it means every allegation is seen as a new one rather than part of a pattern.

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2 hours ago, Pelekophoros said:

Ultimately, if the perpetrator is a rich and powerful male and the legal system (and its statute of limitations if you're working in Hollywood) is against you, the only possible recourse you have is through the media. This is absolutely open to abuse; by publishers, journalists, mentally ill, jilted lovers, other significant 'players' in whatever industry or political environment we're talking about and whole long list of other things.

 

This is where the imbalance exists most heavily against men/the accused.

That is perpetuating a myth. Look at the data in the article I linked, and you'll see there is no* real incidence of mental illness or jilted lovers being responsible for false allegations.

 

I'd agree with there being some risk in the media spreading salacious gossip, which is why I said that there needs to be due diligence in corroborating the evidence before publishing any names. I'd also note that the rich and famous might be a juicy target, but they are also the best protected against false allegations by lawyers and PR.

 

*by which I mean the incidence is below the level expected in the population, and with the exclusion of the Munchausen type presentations, which are not "mentally ill" in any way outside of telling tall stories or very infrequent bizarre reports that never reach the threshold for serious investigation - there is no association with anxiety, depression or other common mental health conditions.

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5 hours ago, geekette said:

That is perpetuating a myth. Look at the data in the article I linked, and you'll see there is no* real incidence of mental illness or jilted lovers being responsible for false allegations.

 

I'd agree with there being some risk in the media spreading salacious gossip, which is why I said that there needs to be due diligence in corroborating the evidence before publishing any names. I'd also note that the rich and famous might be a juicy target, but they are also the best protected against false allegations by lawyers and PR.

 

*by which I mean the incidence is below the level expected in the population, and with the exclusion of the Munchausen type presentations, which are not "mentally ill" in any way outside of telling tall stories or very infrequent bizarre reports that never reach the threshold for serious investigation - there is no association with anxiety, depression or other common mental health conditions.

 

I've already read the article. It was specifically talking about rape allegations presented to the police whereas I was talking about something broader allegations made through the media and its much lower burden of proof, particularly in a world of social media and 24 hour news cycles. I was saying in very broad terms that is open to abuse by whomever.

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2 hours ago, Pelekophoros said:

I've already read the article. It was specifically talking about rape allegations presented to the police whereas I was talking about something broader allegations made through the media and its much lower burden of proof, particularly in a world of social media and 24 hour news cycles. I was saying in very broad terms that is open to abuse by whomever.

I still think you need some evidence to suggest that jilted exes and people with mental health problems are making false allegations, given you are tarnishing the trustworthiness of large chunks of the population (who are already more vulnerable).

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https://www.theguardian.com/film/2017/nov/18/harvey-weinstein-secret-hitlist-sex-scandal

 

Weinstein knew the NYT were working on him and had a list of 91 industry people to target for investigation to see what they may know and if they may go public, compiled this year. Some added as late as August. Women who came out publicly are in the list. One is also a PR person he got in contact with who, it was noted, is friends with the journalist who broke the story. Ratner is also on it. 

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6 hours ago, JohnC said:

https://www.theguardian.com/film/2017/nov/18/harvey-weinstein-secret-hitlist-sex-scandal

 

Weinstein knew the NYT were working on him and had a list of 91 industry people to target for investigation to see what they may know and if they may go public, compiled this year. Some added as late as August. Women who came out publicly are in the list. One is also a PR person he got in contact with who, it was noted, is friends with the journalist who broke the story. Ratner is also on it. 

 

Jesus Christ. With all that going on how could he do his day job effectively?

 

The irony is all this documentation abd industry in trying to keep stories out of the public eye will pretty much confirm the worst that people are accusing him of.

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12 hours ago, geekette said:

I still think you need some evidence to suggest that jilted exes and people with mental health problems are making false allegations, given you are tarnishing the trustworthiness of large chunks of the population (who are already more vulnerable).

 

They, along with everybody else ever, would be able to take advantage of the media bias I mentioned. As I said.

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10 minutes ago, Pelekophoros said:

They, along with everybody else ever, would be able to take advantage of the media bias I mentioned. As I said.

Yes, but as I said, in order to cite particular groups you need some evidence that those groups do this more than the general population, which in this case they don't.

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I didn't realise there were rules on what I can state and when.

 

I've amended the two groups you've identified as potentially being inappropriate when making a broader point that wasn't specifically about them below.

 

Is this ok? 

20 hours ago, geekette said:

 

20 hours ago, geekette said:

Ultimately, if the perpetrator is a rich and powerful male and the legal system (and its statute of limitations if you're working in Hollywood) is against you, the only possible recourse you have is through the media. This is absolutely open to abuse by whatever person wants to abuse it regardless of their social demographics and whether or not their motivating factor is disproportionately represented within a standard sample group of the population.

 

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Just now, Pelekophoros said:

I didn't realise there were rules on what I can state and when.

Well, there aren't rules per se (except general laws about defamation which wouldn't really apply in this context), but it does seem ironic, given your point was that people can be accused of stuff without evidence (individuals, by the media) to then accuse people of stuff without evidence (population groups, on here).

 

And yeah, that's fine, though I had no problem with your statement that it could be exploited by unscrupulous media, which you have also removed.

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http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-11-20/jeffrey-tambor-may-quit-transparent-after-two-harassment-claims/9167972

 



The future of the award-winning television series Transparent is in jeopardy.

The show's star actor Jeffrey Tambor has been accused of sexual harassment and has signalled he may soon be quitting the show

Tambor has repeatedly denied the allegations made against him.

In a statement released today, he did not confirm whether he would be leaving the series, but said he did not see how he could return to the show.

He referred to a "politicised atmosphere" on set and said it was "no longer the job I signed up for four years ago".

 

Two allegations now.

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On 18/11/2017 at 10:46, NickC said:

I find the whole 'who do we need to protect when there an unproved accusation?' discussion an interesting one.


At a surface level I can understand the notion of siding with the accused - after all, if there is no conclusive evidence and the ramifications of being accused are so big, well, you can't put the genie back in the bottle, as it were.


However this is a simplistic view. If we break it down, it comes down to this: Should we discuss, highlight and make decisions on things that are likely to be true, but we don't know for certain whether they are true.


Yes we can, and yes we should. We must remember that pretty much nothing is 100% certain. 


We don't know with 100% certainty whether those rain dances work or not, but we don't invest money in them over scientific meteorological research, because we know from experience that it probably doesn't work. It's unknowable whether there will be anyone going into a store with an intension to shoplift, yet we set up CCTV because we know from experience it will probably happen. 


We make decisions based on the unknowable all the time. It's how we make life work. We look at likelihood of something happening and past experiences of it happening , and we make decisions. 


So, as we have no good reason to disbelieve the accusers, why should we try to keep them quiet? We should make our rules and norms based on the 97%, not the 3%. Will there be a very occasional miscarriage of justice? Yes. But to hold back the 97%, as they have been held back in the past and continue to be held back because of the threat of legal action or public shaming, just doesn't make sense. 

 

My sister worked on an arbitration panel for sexual harassment claims at an American college. The panel would decide whether the accused would face disciplinary action, suspension or expulsion. This process was entirely separate from any legal proceedings.  I got the impression that the majority of cases were a near impossible dilemma where nobody could be 100% certain whether the right decision had been made.

 

At the time she was telling me about this I remember saying I wasn't comfortable with the idea of a non legal panel assigning guilt or innocence and that decision having serious repercussions for young peoples lives. I have a different view now, because basically, the only other option is to allow serial harassers free reign on campus and victims of harassment have to see their attacker on a daily basis because victims were (understandably) unwilling to initiate legal proceedings given the low conviction rates, trauma of testifying in court under the American legal system and the massive disruption to their lives and study that it would cause. I can still see the potential for mistakes. I can't see there being a tidy solution within the current culture.

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Eight women say Charlie Rose sexually harassed them — with nudity, groping and lewd calls

 

 

Eight women have told The Washington Post that longtime television host Charlie Rose made unwanted sexual advances toward them, including lewd phone calls, walking around naked in their presence, or groping their breasts, buttocks or genital areas.

The women were employees or aspired to work for Rose at the “Charlie Rose” show from the late 1990s to as recently as 2011. They ranged in age from 21 to 37 at the time of the alleged encounters. Rose, 75, whose show airs on PBS and Bloomberg TV, also co-hosts “CBS This Morning” and is a contributing correspondent for “60 Minutes.”

 

There are striking commonalities in the accounts of the women, each of whom described their interactions with Rose in multiple interviews with The Post. For all of the women, reporters interviewed friends, colleagues or family members who said the women had confided in them about aspects of the incidents. Three of the eight spoke on the record. Five of the women spoke on the condition of anonymity out of fear of Rose’s stature in the industry, his power over their careers or what they described as his volatile temper.

 

“In my 45 years in journalism, I have prided myself on being an advocate for the careers of the women with whom I have worked,” Rose said in a statement provided to The Post. “Nevertheless, in the past few days, claims have been made about my behavior toward some former female colleagues".

 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/eight-women-say-charlie-rose-sexually-harassed-them--with-nudity-groping-and-lewd-calls/2017/11/20/9b168de8-caec-11e7-8321-481fd63f174d_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_no-name:homepage/story&utm_term=.23b3732bb9b2

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40 minutes ago, Wiseguy said:

John Lasseter has effectively resigned from Disney

 

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/john-lasseters-pattern-alleged-misconduct-detailed-by-disney-pixar-insiders-1059594

 

EDIT: re-reading the articles it may genuinely be  a temporary leave of absence

 

From Cartoon Brew's commentary:

http://www.cartoonbrew.com/artist-rights/breaking-john-lasseter-takes-leave-absence-pixar-following-missteps-154881.html

 

Quote

Though shocking to the public, Lasseter’s behavior has been one of the animation industry’s worst-kept secrets, known to many Pixar employees. Sources additionally tell Cartoon Brew that there has allegedly been at least one financial settlement from the Walt Disney Company over Lasseter’s actions. This implies that the behavior went on with the knowledge of Disney and Pixar Animation Studios president Ed Catmull and Disney CEO Bob Iger.

 

The most disturbing part of Lasseter’s letter is that he says he intends to return in six months. The responsible thing to do at the Walt Disney Company would be to open an independent investigation and learn who knew what when, and who was responsible for allowing Lasseter’s behavior to continue for years. Sweeping Lasseter’s years-long abuse of power is not an option anymore.

 

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I could go on and on and add names as they come up but it's getting to be too much.

 

Instead, as an answer to those who don't think it's important there's a great piece at the Guardian which talks about what we've lost.

 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/nov/21/women-sexual-harassment-work-careers-harvey-weinstein?CMP=soc_567

 



As women come forward with accusations of sexual harassment in politics, media, entertainment and other fields, following the flood of allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, it is striking how many of their stories share the same ending.

Either the alleged abuse, the victim’s refusal to stay quiet, or both, slams the door on critical job opportunities and puts a serious – sometimes terminal – dent in her career. In some cases the victim never works in her industry again.

We spoke to a number of women who have come forward about the costs that sexual harassment imposed on their futures and careers. As society debates what sort of consequences should befall their alleged abusers, it is clear that these women have already suffered a penalty.

“There are coming to be consequences for those actions, but it’s too little too late,” said one of the women, former DC Comics editor Janelle Asselin. “For the people who were harassed and assaulted, the consequences are something we’ve been living with for years.”

 

tl:dr crowd. It's short interviews and quotes from almost a dozen women, many of whom left the industry for good while the men who allegedly victimsed them had their careers thrive. And they're the tip of the iceberg, how much talent have we lost?

 

There needs to be some reparation and here's a good place to start.

 

For every man sacked for serial abuse or who takes "early retirement" under the cloud of such allegations they should be replaced with a qualified talented woman. They're out there so there's no excuses. It will do as a starting point.

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2 hours ago, Unofficial Who said:

For every man sacked for serial abuse or who takes "early retirement" under the cloud of such allegations they should be replaced with a qualified talented woman. They're out there so there's no excuses. 

 

But there isn't, because of this. Catch 22. 

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