BigDummyKenny

No Something. No Another Thing. No Something Else.

There Is No Bad Publicity…?

Posted by RealDaffyDuck on April 23, 2010

They say no publicity is bad publicity – and there is no bad publicity, as long as your name (and URL) are spelled properly?

Kenny may be discovering that may not be entirely true anymore.

Updated with two new links : Washington Post & Huffington Post

Updated with an additional new link : Badger Herald [Californian professor under fire for website]


studentactivism.net [Professor Investigated for Sex Tourism Website]

[Ng started the “Big Baby Kenny” site after he was banned from blogging at a Thai website for encouraging men to seek sex from the “emotionally vulnerable girls” who congregated at a particular Buddhist shrine. (In that same blogpost, which he has posted on his site, he notes that “bruised up girls mired in abusive relationships” are among those who go to the shrine, if that’s your “personal preference.”)
CSU Northridge administrators say that there is nothing they can do about the situation without “evidence that [the site] infringes upon the work he does at the university itself.”]

insidehighered.com [Prof’s Sex Site Sparks Debate]

and

usatoday.com [Cal State professor’s sex site sparks debate
]

[Kenneth Ng calls his website a primer for tourists headed to Thailand, but Fodor’s it ain’t.
The California State University at Northridge professor’s site is a one-stop shop for men drawn to the country’s sex tourism industry. Dotted with pictures of scantily clad women, the website, BigBabyKenny, advises would-be Johns on the art of negotiating with prostitutes. “Start with a compliment,” Ng advises.

INSIDE HIGHER ED: Porn as campus attraction?
IHE ARCHIVE: Does rape fantasy belong in student paper?

Needless to say, Ng’s website is causing headaches for Northridge administrators. First publicized by the Los Angeles Daily News, the economics professor’s site has drawn a wave of unwelcome attention, forcing administrators to at once criticize its content and defend Ng’s right to publish freely on his own time without university resources.
“Until we find representative evidence that it infringes upon the work he does at the university itself, there’s not much we can do about it,” said Harold Hellenbrand, Northridge’s provost.

There may be subtlety in Hellenbrand’s words, but his message is clear: If BigBabyKenny infringes on Ng’s ability to effectively do his job, then Northridge’s position will change. Ng has already said his site is run through a separate server not connected to the university, but Northridge officials might still make a case that the site has interfered with his job.

Asked if students complaining that they were no longer comfortable in Ng’s class would compel Northridge to demand the site be taken down, Hellenbrand said “I’m not inviting complaints, but you just hit on the key issue.”

“If [running the site is] what he wants to do, and at the same time he wants to educate students and students flock away, then that would create a problem,” Hellenbrand said.

How Ng came to be identified as the author of BigBabyKenny is a story in itself. A frequent tourist of Thailand, Ng took to blogging on the website of a Bangkok bar called Big Mango Bar. In one controversial post, Ng advised men to seek women near a particular Buddhist shrine.

“The naysayers will say its creepy to be hanging around the Muariti Shrine, hitting on the emotionally vulnerable girls desperately praying and paying Buddha for a better love life but I beg to differ. Buddha works in mysterious ways,” he wrote.

Perturbed by the post, the bar owners removed it. That led Ng to start his own site, prompting what Ng describes as a concerted effort by the owners to publicize his penchant for writing about prostitutes. They sent mass e-mails to faculty listed in Northridge’s directory, and also posted on RateMyProfessor.com, warning students about Ng, he said.

Ng readily defends the content of his site and says he has no intention of taking it down.

“The university has no stake in this one way or the other, and besides, professors can say whatever they want,” said Ng, a tenured associate professor of economics.

Some question whether Ng has crossed a gray legal line, however, by advising men on sex tourism. Patrick Trueman, a former U.S. justice department official, notes that there are several federal statutes that could come into play. Within U.S. Code 18 are two sections – 2422 (a) and 2422 (b) – that specifically prohibit anyone from “enticing or coercing a person” to travel internationally in pursuit of prostitutes. Moreover, one section specifically prohibits the use of the Internet to lure people.

While prostitution may be tolerated in Thailand, that’s immaterial under the federal code, Trueman said.

“Inducing and enticing? Isn’t that what this guy’s doing?” said Trueman, former chief of the Justice Department’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section in the Criminal Division.

Trueman, now a lawyer specializing in sex trafficking and child abuse cases, said there would likely be debate about whether talking about procuring prostitutes online and actually arranging prostitutes for a person should be treated differently under the law.

“Given how lax the fed government is on these crimes, they may not charge somebody unless they are more directly involved,” he said. “That’s not to say this person couldn’t be charged, and as I read it they could be charged.”

Beyond the legal implications, critics have already attacked Ng on moral grounds. John Foubert, an Oklahoma State University professor who researches sex trafficking, argues that women – often minors – are forced into the sex tourism industry and often have trouble escaping it. Even if Ng is operating within the bounds of the law, Northridge officials have an ethical problem they’ve yet to face, Foubert said.

“Do they want to live with the blood on their hands of these girls that are being essentially raped by these men, who are going down and purchasing sex? I think that’s a larger question,” said Foubert, an associate professor of college student development.

Ng said he allows anything to be written on his site, so long as it doesn’t involve pedophilia or underage sex. He does, however, write about how difficult it is to effectively negotiate with a “half or sometimes fully naked teenage girl” when she’s “expertly gyrating” on a man’s lap.

While his critics have been speaking out since fall, Ng said he has yet to hear from a student who expressed discomfort about his website.

“The job of the university is to expose students to the world – not just a politically correct view of the world and not just the good parts of the world,” he said. “If a student reads that [site], I personally think it’s good for them. They learn about something out there; maybe they disapprove of it and they don’t think it’s good.” ]

Sign The Petition! [http://www.change.org/petitions/view/tell_cal_state_professors_shouldnt_promote_thai_sex_tourism]
Targeting: Shannon Krajewski (Associate Director, Marketing and Programs) and Dr. Jolene Koester (President, CSUN)
Started by: Amanda Kloer

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8 Responses to “There Is No Bad Publicity…?”

  1. iduck said

    You are fucking quackers.

  2. Wentworth said

    SH-III-TT feel the burn Kenny!

  3. Big Black Gulliver said

    Daffy did you actually read the Badger Herald Article?????

    WTF

    He created the blog in an act of defiance against the Big Mango Bar of Thailand, whose blog he had occasionally written for. He had written a piece against the bar’s brothel-style business operation and they censored his work.

    This is wrong

    To restore their tarnished name, the Big Mango Bar struck out at Ng by contacting the California newspapers, as well as his work colleagues in an attempt to slander Ng’s name and personal life.

    This is wrong

    “To make matters worse, the Big Mango was hit with financial hardship and was forced to close. Part of the reason they lashed out at me was to get back at me for ‘ruining their business,’” Ng said.

    This is wrong

    • I’m well aware the article said – it’s clear the writer just took Kenny’s words and performed zero fact checking (you know, regular journalism). I’m just using this also as a placeholder for unique mentions of the bbl affair.

      Yeah, I bet Kenny’s proud of The Badger article – most people will care more about USA today and Washington Post as sources.

    • gump said

      Given the outcry at CSUN, isn’t it pretty clear now that there was no mass-mailing to CSUN colleagues.

      http://www.csun.edu/aas/Letter2CSUNAdmin.html

    • Good Find — here’s the complete text:

      AAS & GWS Joint Letter to CSUN Administrators Regarding Professor Ng

      Dear CSUN Administrators,

      This letter serves as a statement calling for an institutional response to the external activities of our colleague, Kenneth Ng, Associate Professor of Economics. During the week of April 18, 2010, numerous media sources reported of Ng’s involvement in the “Thailand girl scene,” particularly entrepreneurial activities promoting advice to American tourists interested in meeting young Thai women.

      Although Ng argues that his personal website is a tool meant to provide travel insight for American tourists in Thailand, his project perpetuates the cultural prostitution of women in Thailand and beyond. Hundreds of thousands of people in Thailand are subject to human rights violations through the sex tourism industry, which often promotes prostitution, human trafficking, and abuse, namely against young women and children. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, nearly 1 million people are victims of trafficking and sex tourism. Ng inaccurately characterizes Thai involvement in sex tourism as common cultural practice. Acknowledging the disparate social, political, and economic conditions that foster such an industry, he advocates for the exploitation of those disparities.

      As CSUN faculty, we are dismayed that our students and colleagues are primarily learning of this issue through mainstream media sources that are condemning Ng’s off-campus endeavors. As a result of one professor’s lack of good judgment, there has been a public backlash against CSUN; characterizing our institution as one that condones problematic faculty involvement in cultural prostitution. As faculty who are charged with being representatives of CSUN, we are disheartened to learn that there has been no institutional statement made against Ng’s activities and we question why our administration has not taken a more proactive stand against his actions.

      Although the administration has refused to professionally intervene in Ng’s endeavor, citing the auspices of free speech, we call on the administration to condemn Ng’s activities as those that violate the values and principles of the university. We believe that it is important that CSUN’s identity does not become defined by the sensational aspect of this one story. So many CSUN faculty and students are working hard to defend the rights of those who have been exploited. As a campus that prides itself on the ethnic and racial diversity of our students, faculty, and staff, it is unacceptable that we do not make a stronger statement against activities that marginalize many members of the CSUN community, including faculty, students, and staff of Thai descent; Asian Americans; and men and women in general.

      CSUN Asian American Studies Department
      CSUN Gender and Women’s Studies Department

  4. Do a search on Twitter for BigBabyKenny.

    It ain’t pretty. No love.

  5. From the articles quoted above :

    “Ng said he allows anything to be written on his site, so long as it doesn’t involve pedophilia or underage sex.”


    Apparently Professor Ng’s policy has now changed, as he not only condones pedophilia accusations, but in fact encourages impersonated posts accusing other commenters of pedophilia, defying a California Senate Bill (SB1411) that makes electronic impersonations with intent to cause harm a felony.

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