The original sex tape scandal

You may think sex tape scandals are so 90’s, but they’re still in the news, and you can’t write a blog post fast enough before reports of yet more sex tapes or pictures hit the ‘Net. 

We all heard about Scarlett Johansson’s nude cell phone pictures being hacked, and on the heels of that, there’s now reports of a Tupac sex tape finally surfacing after twenty years. 

There’s also supposedly a Rhianna sex tape out there, J Lo recently getting her lawyers to stop one of her old home movies from getting released, and Shaquille O’Neal caught up in his own sex tape squalor, where someone who had a copy was allegedly beaten and kidnapped for it.

These days, celebrities have worked very hard to keep their home pornos from coming out.

Howard Stern once mentioned the Collin Farrell movie that got halted, and they tried to get it out into the world by offering $3 million for it, and the Playboy playmate he was having sex with was willing to have it released for that price. (Oddly enough, Kid Rock also had a sex tape yanked, something you wouldn’t think he’d find negative publicity in a million years).

And now, according to FoxNews, celebrities are trying to protect themselves from their names becoming XXX urls, with ICM Registry having “a laser-like focus on taking down any. XXX cybersquatters who are hoping to cash in on the traffic a site like would bring in.”

Although a lot of people in the hair band world were famous for making sex tapes and showing them to anyone who’d watch them, the party line with the video that put a public face on these scandals, the Pam and Tommy tap, was that it was stolen from their home by an angry electrician who didn’t get paid.

As journalist Evan Wright (Generation Kill) recalled in the history of X-rated entertainment, The Other Hollywood, “There have been other celebrity scandal sex tapes, but the Pamela Anderson Lee video is the first one that was distributed over the Internet – that was actually streamed over the Internet.”

One porn producer refused to take it on, saying, “No, it’s unethical. It was stolen, no release, no receipts. It’s not fair.” 

As to how it got out in the world so quickly, one of the producers involved put it up on a number of different sites, so if one got shut down, it would be up and running somewhere else, an idea that was inspired by the Pentagon Papers leaking in multiple places. (This was also done with the infamous Scientology video featuring Tom Cruise, where as soon as one link got yanked down on YouTube, another one would soon pop up).

Wright would also say, “I remember hearing  this statistic, and I think it’s true: In the late 1990s, NASA did live webcasts of the streams of images from Mars. At about that time, the Pamela Anderson Lee video was also being streamed on the Internet.”

Can you guess which one was watched by more people?