On ethical responsibility.
While I’m still not certain how to progress with video content on the site, I still edit captured footage for archival several times a week. I’ve always consciously shied away from posting any of the ModCon footage for several reasons- firstly because I truly believe that ModCon existed only for attendees and that our shared experience should have never been released outside of the group, but also because the content I have is straight up procedural footage. I was against the VCDs and DVDs circulating during their original release but I’m at least comforted by the fact that not many are floating around these days and as such they’ll never be used as a how-to guide for the next Instagram superstar. But what about other content?
As I was working on an archival project today I was becoming excited to share it with Sacred Debris readers. Edited together content from several silicone enhancement procedures (scrotum and penis) with an amazing monologue from Dr. Ronald Brown about his background and how he came to be the famed/reviled Modification Doctor and World’s Worst Surgeon.
It’s great stuff, especially Brown’s truly genuine concern for clients who’s needs fell outside of the medical status quo, particularly those who were seeking SRS.
But it’s also an up close look at the mechanics of silicone injection on a professional level.* In the year that we’ve been online, searches for some variation of silicone injection have accounted for 10k+ visitors, so there’s clearly a market for the procedure and very few people performing it.
Those who do offer it are often worse that Dr. Brown; peddling their services to anyone who can afford it and using non-biocompatible materials like mineral oil and even cement. Most of these butchers are working in the transgender community and not on modification fans looking for the kind of work shown in the video, but technique is technique and this would be Silicone 101 for folks looking for an instruction manual.
I’ve wrestled with this before- where does my ethical obligation lie when it comes to putting this sort of content online? Would I feel differently if it were a subincision procedure? Scarification? An implant? Obviously I think there’s room for a sliding scale of good idea/bad idea but where should the line be drawn?
I love posting the before & after interviews with the clients who’ve had these procedures done, but I’m just not sure that anything would be served with this kind of content being included here on the blog. Behind a walled garden like /extreme over at BMEZINE, maybe, but certainly not here.
What do you folks think?
I know we don’t get a lot of comments here, but if you have thoughts on this, let me know. And defend your position; if you’re a piercer who feels that it’s ok to show procedurals, would you film a piercing start to finish for the Web?
These are the things I think about at 4am.
*One could argue that, with the dangers associated with silicone enhancement there IS no professional level.