For those of you who missed it, Karen Owen, a student at Duke University, sent a summary of her sex life to some friends, via email. She has bullet points, charts, and graphs. How can you not admire a woman who can graph her sex life? For one thing, it was the third most searched topic on Google yesterday, which means a large percentage of people were reading her slideshow while at work.
The New Republic
Snapshot of the new workplace: Karen Owen's PowerPoint | Penelope Trunk Careers
The recent suicide of Tyler Clementi seemed only to reinforce this conclusion. Clementi, an year-old Rutgers student, killed himself after his roommate secretly webcast his dorm-room intimacies and publicized the livestream on Twitter. I saw him making out with a dude. In Pennsylvania, a school district gave free MacBook laptops to students and then allegedly used the built-in webcams to spy on some students at home. At Duke University, a former student named Karen Owen composed a mock thesis detailing her sexual encounters with 13 athletes, complete with a PowerPoint slideshow of names, photographs, and graphic descriptions of their performances. Owen e-mailed her narrative to a few friends, who forwarded it to their friends, after which it went viral and was published by the snarky sports website Deadspin. What is fascinating about these cases, however, is how quickly a legal response emerged.
Karen Owen’s “Fuck List” and the Rutgers Sex Video Suicide: Not So Different
CBS What do young women today really think about sex? It's a question guys might not want to hear answered, if a "senior thesis" by recent college grad Karen Owen is any indication. The mock thesis, subtitled "Excelling in the Realm of Horizontal Academics," features lots of stuffy academic language - but it's actually a brutally frank kiss-and-tell about the physical attributes and sexual prowess of 13 male students Owen claims to have hooked up with. The PowerPoint presentation includes a bar chart showing the overall rankings of her sexual conquests and photos of the men in question - many from the Duke lacrosse team. Points were awarded on the basis of physical attractiveness, sexual skills and creativity, aggressiveness, humor, and athletic ability.
It seems so obvious -- be very careful with every e-mail message you send, every thought you post on Facebook, every blog entry you write. But once again, an online joke meant for just a couple of friends has gone viral, bringing embarrassment and a host of new questions about Internet privacy. In this day of YouTube, blogs and hour news networks with 1, minutes of airtime to fill a day, it bears repeating: Proceed with caution.