Now then, now then, now then

Craig the cyclist

Über Member
I watched the new Netflix documentary on Jimmy Savile yesterday. Bloody hell, that was a grim watch!

It got me thinking though, could this happen again with someone who was just starting to becoming famous nowadays?
 

Beebo

Senior Member
I watched the new Netflix documentary on Jimmy Savile yesterday. Bloody hell, that was a grim watch!

It got me thinking though, could this happen again with someone who was just starting to becoming famous nowadays?
Of course it could, but it would be far harder. We would be foolish to think otherwise.

I like to think the public are far more cynical now. Celebrities are not as revered.

I expect institutions like the BBC and Stoke Mandeville have a much stricter policy on children/ vulnerable adults / dead bodies being left unsupervised, which didn’t exist in the 70s and 80s.

CCTV covers most public spaces. Plus everyone has a smart phone with cameras posting stuff to social media so it would be far harder to keep things secret.

Michael Jackson is a slightly more modern example but even he’s been dead for longer than Savile. Jackson got away with it because the children’s parents were totally naive or star struck.

So there needs to be some sort of enabling process. Whether that’s foolish parents or corrupt police officers. But it would be much harder today.
 

AuroraSaab

Über Member
I'm sure it could, and probably is, still happening. I think it's less likely to be hidden though as attitudes have changed. There used to be a lot of dismissing of predatory sexual behaviour - it was just 'cheeky' or 'wandering hand trouble' or 'bit of a lech' - and victims probably thought they were the only ones and wouldn't be believed. Fortunately we take these things more seriously now.

I saw Rolf Harris was trending on Twitter. Presume he was mentioned on the Saville programme. Lots of people posting about unsavoury encounters with him, stuff like him asking for hugs, or touching their bottoms etc.

I had a teacher at school ('70's) who said she used to go to the discos where Saville dj'ed in the '60's. She found him a disgusting lech and said he was only interested in younger girls. This was long before anything in the papers.

I guess my point is that these blokes usually have a long history and it needs a conspiracy of silence from employers and their community to prevent it coming to light. The BBC and others were enablers, and as long as there are enablers there will be more victims. This applies as much to the Church, politicians etc as the entertainment industry.
 
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Craig the cyclist

Über Member
I'm sure it could, and probably is, still happening. I think it's less likely to be hidden though as attitudes have changed. There used to be a lot of dismissing of predatory sexual behaviour - it was just 'cheeky' or 'wandering hand trouble' or 'bit of a lech' - and victims probably thought they were the only ones and wouldn't be believed. Fortunately we take these things more seriously now.

I saw Rolf Harris was trending on Twitter. Presume he was mentioned on the Saville programme. Lots of people posting about unsavoury encounters with him, stuff like him asking for hugs, or touching their bottoms etc.

I had a teacher at school ('70's) who said she used to go to the discos where Saville dj'ed in the '60's. She found him a disgusting lech and said he was only interested in younger girls. This was long before anything in the papers.

I guess my point is that these blokes usually have a long history and it needs a conspiracy of silence from employers and their community to prevent it coming to light. The BBC and others were enablers, and as long as there are enablers there will be more victims. This applies as much to the Church, politicians etc as the entertainment industry.
Actually Rolf Harris was not mentioned once in the either episode. Gary Glitter was, but not Harris.

The one bit that struck me was when Andrew Neil was being interviewed about his interview with Savile. He said that they had a team of top investigative reporters looking for the 000s of women Savile supposedly slept with during the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s, which was during the whole kiss and tell era of the NoTW, Sunday People etc. Despite Savile owning up to having had sex with all these women, the team they had on it could not find one single woman anywhere in the country who would say 'yes, I did'. Andrew Neil said that should have set massive alarm bells off, but it kind of didn't, and he thinks that investigative journalism 'failed the country'. He came across as very sad when he said that.
 

BoldonLad

Old man on a bike. Not a member of a clique.
Location
South Tyneside
I watched the new Netflix documentary on Jimmy Savile yesterday. Bloody hell, that was a grim watch!

It got me thinking though, could this happen again with someone who was just starting to becoming famous nowadays?

Well, I am sure "lessons have been learned", so, in my view.......... yes, most definitely it could, and, may well be happening, right now
 

Electric_Andy

New Member
Apart from the awful abuse that members of the public suffered, what struck me very hard is the interview with Selina Scott. He pretty much sexually assaulted her on TV and it was passed off as "a bit of fun". Even if Selina hadn't made a complaint, you'd think the producer, or the BBC, or heck even anyone else on set at the time would have done something? That spoke volumes for me, on how back then it was considered rude to not confront a serial abuser, just becasue he was a famous white male
 
Apart from the awful abuse that members of the public suffered, what struck me very hard is the interview with Selina Scott. He pretty much sexually assaulted her on TV and it was passed off as "a bit of fun". Even if Selina hadn't made a complaint, you'd think the producer, or the BBC, or heck even anyone else on set at the time would have done something? That spoke volumes for me, on how back then it was considered rude to not confront a serial abuser, just becasue he was a famous white male
There was a piece in the Guardian a couple of weeks ago about how he assaulted a female producer while a Radio 4 programme was being made:

https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-...on-trying-to-stop-britains-worst-sex-offender

The author, brought up in Leeds, had heard of Savile's reputation before and it seems that his proclivity for dead bodies were at least well enough rumoured to be part of the city's folklore; see the paragraph headed Elland Road, Leeds, 1987.

EDIT: Link cross posted with @Ian H
 

AuroraSaab

Über Member
I haven't seen the Saville programme; not sure I could stomach it at the moment. But yeah, they were 'different times', when creepy blokes were tolerated and it was considered rude to enforce your physical boundaries. When you look back though there's loads of this stuff - Jim Carrey forcibly full on kissing 19 year old Alicia Silverstone at the MTV awards in 1997 for example (not in the same league as Saville or Harris obviously). Most blokes I know would never dream of doing something like that, even as a joke, but obviously fame and money breeds a sense of entitlement and everybody turns a blind eye.

What is a bit odd is that I don't really remember Saville being the much loved figure that he was presented as after he died. Even at the height of his fame most people I know found him a bit odd and eccentric. It was his charity work made him a bit untouchable by the press in my opinion.

Edit: Just read Ian H's link. I had completely forgotten that Saville had his own room at Stoke Mandeville hospital and was given the keys to Broadmoor. Unbelievable.
 
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Ian H

Über Member
There was a piece in the Guardian a couple of weeks ago about how he assaulted a female producer while a Radio 4 programme was being made:

https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-...on-trying-to-stop-britains-worst-sex-offender

The author, brought up in Leeds, had heard of Savile's reputation before and it seems that his proclivity for dead bodies were at least well enough rumoured to be part of the city's folklore; see the paragraph headed Elland Road, Leeds, 1987.
Ha! Snap! ;)
 
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Craig the cyclist

Über Member
Apart from the awful abuse that members of the public suffered, what struck me very hard is the interview with Selina Scott. He pretty much sexually assaulted her on TV and it was passed off as "a bit of fun". Even if Selina hadn't made a complaint, you'd think the producer, or the BBC, or heck even anyone else on set at the time would have done something? That spoke volumes for me, on how back then it was considered rude to not confront a serial abuser, just becasue he was a famous white male
I can't think of anyone else now who holds the status he had, and to reduce it to his gender and skin colour I think misses the point a bit. I see what you mean, but he was more than a 'famous white male', he was a national institution, massive charity fundraiser and for some people an absolute saint.
 
What is a bit odd is that I don't really remember Saville being the much loved figure that he was presented as after he died. Even at the height of his fame most people I know found him a bit odd and eccentric. It was his charity work made him a bit untouchable by the press in my opinion.
That and his proximity to Royalty, Baroness Thatcher etc.

It seems that the 'habits' of Stewart Hall and Rolf Harris were well enough rumoured too.

The sentencing remarks for the latter spare no detail...
 
I know that things have tightened up a lot in some areas.
When I was training to become a school teacher the lectures on safeguarding - and self protection - were very specific and detailed
Then every school I taught in made sure that every teacher knew the rules and requirement
things like never in a room alone with a pupil unless in clear sight of the door and the door open.
It was partly in place so that false accusation couldn;t be made - or not easily - but also so that teachers (etc) couldn't take advantage of a vulnerable pupil

When I spoke to old teachers (and ones my own age that had started teaching right from school - I started when I was over 40:eek:) they said there was none of that when they started
In fact at that time it would be normal for a teacher to have a detention or after-school session with only one pupil and close the door.
At times they were 'rumours' of a member of staff 'having wandering hands' around the girls - or something
That was totally impossible in any school where I taught - OK probably not totally but way more difficult and unaccepted than years before
 
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Craig the cyclist

Über Member
That and his proximity to Royalty, Baroness Thatcher etc.
You mention the Royal family and Baroness Thatcher, but again that somewhat misses the point and focuses on your political viewpoint which is to the detriment of the whole story.

It was seemingly everyone apart from John Lydon he fooled! Seriously, look at his wikipedia pages and be astonished. Quite amazing. The RNLI, the Gypsy council, the Pope, hundreds of Drs and nurses, the Institute of Advanced Motorists, Mensa, politicians of every single hue, senior policemen, junior policemen, Mary Whitehouse gave him a bloody award for producing fine upstanding family programmes!
 

matticus

Über Member
It was seemingly everyone apart from John Lydon he fooled! Seriously, look at his wikipedia pages and be astonished. Quite amazing. The RNLI, the Gypsy council, the Pope, hundreds of Drs and nurses, the Institute of Advanced Motorists, Mensa, politicians of every single hue, senior policemen, junior policemen, Mary Whitehouse gave him a bloody award for producing fine upstanding family programmes!
... and yet simultaneously, every smart-arse in the world (especially if they have an internet connection) knew he was a wrong-un.
Apparently.
 
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