Docuthread - The Proliferation of Pedophilia...
Foreword - The beginnings of it all:
It was roughly three weeks ago that, in my infinite boredom, I decided to embark upon certain personal research. Little did I know at the time, that the results would shock me beyond belief, but I was too intrigued with the question I posed myself to give any thought to how the answer to that question would affect the way I view the internet. As things progressed and I began making notes, it became clear to me that this was becoming a much bigger thing, and would need publication somewhere. So I settled on here, and decided to produce my research in a docuthread format (a kind of documentary/journalistic article style). So, here goes nothing. Be sure to read all of it right though, I promise you it won't be a waste of your time.
How easy is it to get Pedophilia (child porn) on the internet? And in what quantity is it available?
To begin with I didn't know where to start. I had no idea where pedophiles might "go" in order to get porn - a few possibilities ran through my mind; chatrooms, secret sites via spam emails, and google. Google proved to be a dead end, either by lack of my knowledge of the intricasies of what exactly a pedo would type in to get what he wants, or by Google somehow screening out the sort of explicit content that would provide search results for queries like "preteen rape video" and "naked children". Chatrooms was another dead end, as I didn't know quite what would happen if I waltzed into a chatroom announcing that I was a pedo with a hardon who wanted to see some action.
The spam emails however, I was already aware of as being a good lead...
I had gotten a number of emails in the past that advertised pedophilia related paysites. To begin with, I explored (clicked the link) the emails out of my own curiosity, just to see if it was really what it said it was. A few showed what can only be described as horrific scenes of child abuse - in the worst cases, babies and toddlers being forced to perform fellatio. The first time I saw these images, I literally threw up. But for some reason I felt compelled to keep on checking the links, like a kind of sense of duty - and eventually got into the habit of reporting them to various authorities. These sites would usually get taken down within a fortnight, and many would already be dead by the time you got around to clicking the link. But no matter how many I reported, more always cropped up in my inbox. And unfortunately, the time it took to get the sites down was often long enough for all or most of the content to be downloaded by plenty of people - usually a week, more than enough time to download a couple gigabytes or more. (I've downloaded the same amount in movies, music, and programs in under a week.)
So, I'd already exposed one avenue a pedophile might go down in order to get his fix. But I felt like that didn't really answer my question fully. I was sure that it was just one of the many front lines in the war against pedophiles. There HAD to be more out there. And there HAD to be something that would give me an indication of just how much pedophilia was out there. And the only thing that would do that is something that could give me search results.
That was when it hit me - the one thing other than a search engine that would give search results was a P2P filesharing network. The potential answer to my question was sitting right under my nose, that little limewire client patiently waiting on my taskbar. So, with an air of apprehension, intrigue, and curiousity, I opened it up, and stared blankly into the search box, trying to get my brain in gear. The little black line blinking away, as though it was counting down to the moment when I would make my next keystroke. My mind came to, and I typed in "preteen underage incest", attempting to make my seach as broad as my imagination would allow.
I hit enter.
Limewire took a moment to open up the search, then there was a brief moment where nothing happened. I began to think it wouldn't turn up anything, when suddenly... I was flooded with a HUGE list of results that immediately scrolled right down and continued to grow rapidly as the search continued. The scrollbar had already become tiny and it was only a third of the way into the search. By the time the search had finished, I was left with just under a hundred results at peak time. Some of the results were in the posession of over a hundred limewire users.
I sat back, mouth open in shock. I suddenly began to realise that, there weren't just two or three pedophiles - the odd freaks here and there - there were literally hundreds, maybe thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of pedophiles out there.
As my racing mind began to settle down, I started thinking along the lines of my research once again. I'd gotten this far, but I had no way of telling whether any of the results I'd recieved were actual child porn, rather than just some young *looking* woman (or even men) on a renamed video file, perhaps put on the limewire network in an attempt to satisfy the hungry pedos while helping cut down on the demand for scenes of actual child abuse (my mind musing). So, there was only one thing for it; download, and watch, at least 3 videos.
I chose the three that looked the most "promising" from the titles. Two of them were labelled "R@ygold" (which I would later find out is a secret pedo porn keyword on P2P clients). One ran out of sources (guilty party on the other end of the line cancelling my upload) so I had to choose another, which was also labelled "R@ygold" - I now had three with this keyword.
One by one, the downloads finished, and I prepared myself for the worst before previewing the files. The first one was a dud - just some fully grown women as I had expected. The second one though, was shocking. When I saw a naked boy and girl, probably no older than 13 or 14, having sex on the video, I immediately closed it. Two thoughts went through my mind, one was that I've obviously found something, the other was the realisation that if the third video was similar in nature, then I could be sure that there were more genuine pedo videos somewhere in that list of search results. I previewed the third file - it was a businessman and a 14 year old "prostitute" boy in a "hotel room" according to the file name, and that is exactly what was on the video. The businessman began to have sex with the boy, and I closed the window.
I decided to give it a rest for a bit - what I'd uncovered so far was pretty shocking and I was getting worried that I was possibly working my way too deep into this underground culture of pedophiles. I didn't want to end up with police busting through my door and having to explain in court that it was for research purposes. So, I vowed to delete the files when I next returned to the PC - for now though, I was going to go watch TV for a bit.
I didn't realise this at the time, but going to watch TV before deleting the files would add something to my research that would truly answer my question. The files were all still sat in my shared folder, collecting hits on searches and being uploaded by other pedos. When I returned to my computer I went straight to the shared media tab of my limewire client, and was disgusted with what I found.
While I'd been away (about 6 hours) I'd gathered 75 hits, and 25 uploads on just one of the files. It had during that time become the most downloaded and most often hit file out of all the files in my shared folder, some of which had been there for over 4 weeks and still hadn't recieved any more than 20 hits and 4 uploads at most. I worked out, that at that rate, by the end of the week, that one file would've gathered 2100 hits, and 700 downloads. Even though I'd gotten the answer to my question I was shocked and extremely angry that my computer and internet connection had aided a pedophile. I deleted the files, went outside, and kicked the gate in rage.
After composing myself and coming back inside, I added the findings to my research notes, and added a conclusion note.
Pedophilia is as prolific and numerous as the pedophiles that download it. It's VERY easy to get hold of genuine videos, and the more people download the files, the more sources there'll be. Not only that, but pedophiles aren't isolated cases - there may be millions of them all over the world. The majority of whom are most likely totally unknown, and have never been to prison.
So how does this change things? Well, it certainly doesn't make me paranoid. But I'm more aware and more conscious than I was. Not only about the number of pedos but the nature of the whole thing. This thing is real, it's disgusting, and it's all over the place - realising this is key to changing your attitude toward it. I'm sure half the problem is bad parents who leave their kids in situations where they're vulnerable to sexual predators - so when the time comes for me to raise a family, I'll be making sure that I do a good job of keeping my kids out of the reach of pedos - not stifling them, just being AWARE and acting on that awareness.
Sorry for the poor quality of wording, I rushed it a bit. Hopefully it opens everyone's eyes though. It certainly opened mine. Feel free to discuss/debate.