Sunday, December 5, 2010

FBI Investigates Barbie: This Actually Makes Sense

"Video Barbie in FBI Cross Hairs"
Kim Zetter, Threat Level, Wired (December 3, 2010 )

"A Barbie doll tricked out with a video camera concealed in her necklace could be used by predators to create child pornography, warns the FBI in a recent cybercrime alert.

"In the alert, mistakenly released to the press, the FBI expressed concern that the toy’s camera, which can capture 30 minutes of video and rivals a Canon 7D in quality (see above), could be used to lure children and surreptitiously film child pornography. Barbie and other dolls have been used in the past by sexual predators to attract victims.

"According to ABC News, which obtained a copy of the memo, the FBI appears to have opened an investigation into the doll...."

The Lemming isn't one of those folks who assumes that 'the government' is always right - or always wrong.

That said, the idea of the FBI investigating a - Barbie doll, of all things - seemed like something out of alternative comics of the sixties.

The sexual-predator angle explains what's going on: as far as the FBI is concerned. In the Lemming's opinion. It'd be nice if we didn't need to be concerned about folks like that, but 'nice' and 'real' aren't always the same.

Another question remains: by what lunatic leap of twisted product planning did someone in Mattel hatch the notion that putting a camera in Barbie's chest was a good idea? And get the thing into production.

The Lemming's talked to someone who saw advertising for this 'video Barbie.' Apparently the doll has an obvious hole in her chest, with 'necklace' decoration around it - and a screen on her back that shows what the camera sees.

"Creepy" was the term used to describe the doll: and the Lemming is inclined to agree.

From the Lemming's point of view, it sounds like someone in Mattel has been excavating on the floor of Uncanny Valley. (May 20, 2009)
Sort-of-related post:


Brigid said...

Missing a word: "Barbie's chest was good idea?"

The Friendly Neighborhood Proofreader

Brian, aka Aluwir, aka Norski said...


Ah, heh-heh: found it, fixed it. Thanks!

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