Don't look now, but Barbie is under fire again. Makers of the controversial doll, which is usually criticized for presenting young girls with an idealized image of beauty that is largely unattainable without copious amounts of help — e.g., lipo and rhinoplasty — are under fire for releasing a new doll called Video Girl. "Video Girl" Barbie has a small built-in camera in the chest and an LCD in the back of the doll. CNN is reporting that the FBI is warning law agencies that the new Video Girl doll could be used as a tool by pedophiles to make child pornography. In an alert entitled "Barbie 'Video Girl'," the FBI reports on a "possible child pornography production method." A cyber crime alert doesn't cite any misuse of the doll, which has been on the market since July, but talks about the possibility.
It doesn't take a rocket scientist or the FBI to figure out that this does not bode well for children. Child predators typically use dolls and toys to lure children away from "safe" places. Now they can entice children and then exploit them in one fell swoop. We're not sure what to make of the creative folks at Mattel who thought that making this doll was a good idea. We're even more perplexed by parents who actually went out and bought it. You don't need a degree in criminology to know that this is a bad idea.
Read more at CNN.