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Young people, online fandom and the perils of child pornography legislation in Australia

Journal Article


Abstract


  • In 1971 the editors of Oz magazine were prosecuted for obscenity in a London courtroom for

    their infamous ‘School Kids Issue’, almost the entire contents of which had been created by a team

    of young people. In today’s Web 2.0 environment, similar kinds of content to that featured in the

    magazine is created by young people and made ubiquitous on fan websites. In particular ‘manips’

    (manipulated images) of all kinds of pop culture heroes from boy band members to characters

    from Harry Potter are inserted into pornographic contexts. Whereas in the 1970s it was obscenity

    legislation that was used to restrict this form of cultural commentary, today child pornography

    legislation can be used to capture this content. I argue that changes to child pornography laws

    across the western world in the last two decades have resulted in the capture of even fictional

    images that are or may only ‘appear to be’ a person under the age of 18, rendering some aspects

    of online youth culture problematic. The ‘juridicial discourse’ that increasingly collapses a complex

    range of cultural representations into the category of child pornography is a cause for concern for

    all academics working on online youth cultures and for the young people involved

Publication Date


  • 2019

Citation


  • McLelland, M. (2019). Young people, online fandom and the perils of child pornography legislation in Australia. International Journal of Cultural Studies, 22 (1), 102-118.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85059542046

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/lhapapers/3499

Number Of Pages


  • 16

Start Page


  • 102

End Page


  • 118

Volume


  • 22

Issue


  • 1

Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom

Abstract


  • In 1971 the editors of Oz magazine were prosecuted for obscenity in a London courtroom for

    their infamous ‘School Kids Issue’, almost the entire contents of which had been created by a team

    of young people. In today’s Web 2.0 environment, similar kinds of content to that featured in the

    magazine is created by young people and made ubiquitous on fan websites. In particular ‘manips’

    (manipulated images) of all kinds of pop culture heroes from boy band members to characters

    from Harry Potter are inserted into pornographic contexts. Whereas in the 1970s it was obscenity

    legislation that was used to restrict this form of cultural commentary, today child pornography

    legislation can be used to capture this content. I argue that changes to child pornography laws

    across the western world in the last two decades have resulted in the capture of even fictional

    images that are or may only ‘appear to be’ a person under the age of 18, rendering some aspects

    of online youth culture problematic. The ‘juridicial discourse’ that increasingly collapses a complex

    range of cultural representations into the category of child pornography is a cause for concern for

    all academics working on online youth cultures and for the young people involved

Publication Date


  • 2019

Citation


  • McLelland, M. (2019). Young people, online fandom and the perils of child pornography legislation in Australia. International Journal of Cultural Studies, 22 (1), 102-118.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85059542046

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/lhapapers/3499

Number Of Pages


  • 16

Start Page


  • 102

End Page


  • 118

Volume


  • 22

Issue


  • 1

Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom