I thought this blog did a great job of giving an example of a news piece that was published and then breaking it apart to explain what made the story media worthy..
It has a shocking value to it, and I congratulate the people at pervescan for bringing to my attention.
House of Pain
» From the S&M Department
“A meshugga madam who taught people how to be sex slaves turned a stately $3 million Westchester home owned by an ultra-Orthodox rabbinical school into an S&M dungeon, police claimed yesterday. Mistress of ‘The Sovereign Estate,’ Sandra Chemero — who advertised the manse online as a place ‘where submissives and slaves are immersed in training’ — was busted on charges of prostitution and weapons possession for having a stun gun. Chemero’s lair is in the same tony Bedford Hills town that’s home to convicted felon Martha Stewart, designer Ralph Lauren and billionaire George Soros. The 46-year-old dominatrix, who was arrested Tuesday, was free on bail by yesterday afternoon. Bedford cops said that they’re still investigating and that they are reviewing ’seized business records’ of her unorthodox operation. Pictures on Chemero’s Web site show the S&M mistress using whips, chains, leather straps, and sex toys on her male clients. In one sickening photo, she appears to be using a funnel and a tube to urinate into the mouth of a man who is bound and gagged… Neighbors said were surprised to hear of the goings-on in the house. ‘That’s life. There are all kinds of people with all kinds of quirks. I’d be more worried if they were selling drugs,’ said a retired stockbroker.” — New York Post (US)
(Thanks to Cat for the link.)
Lest you go looking for them, law enforcement has done a great job erasing Ms. Chemero’s sites from the web. They were available at sovereignestate.com and thesovereignestate.com. Even some ads that Ms. Chemero posted on S&M sites have disappeared. You’d think she never existed online if the New York Post hadn’t reproduced one of her pictures.
The newspapers have played up the fact that the estate in question happened to be owned by a Jewish yeshiva. “It’s against our religion. It’s against the Bible. We’ve never even heard of such a thing,” a rabbi told the newspaper. Presumably he was referring not to prostitution, since that and half a dozen other kinks are mentioned in the Bible itself, but to BDSM. Whatever. The Jewish angle seems relevant only from the “get a story to sell papers” viewpoint, since the lady rented the mansion through an agent and apparently had no contact with the rabbinical owners. Or at least she had no contact with them concerning real estate matters.
The newspapers have also tried to stoke the flames by getting reactions from neighbors, boilerplate stuff along the lines of “can you believe it happened in this tony neighborhood?” Well, of course it’s believable. Who do you think has the money to patronize S&M dungeons — guys on the dole? welfare moms? Sure, there is a range of establishments running from the cheap to the rich. But even the cheap dungeons in New York are not exactly available to the budget shopper. Mostly they’re patronized by “generous gentlemen,” so it makes perfect sense to set up shop where the gents live. Hell, probably one of Ms. Chemero’s clients suggested the idea to her. “Hey, Mistress, there’s a place for rent down the road…” Odds are the bulk of her clients lived within a five-mile radius. Probably one of them even paid the rent, or else he’d be beaten and humiliated.
Find out more about the Author of this blog at his website Rob Tencer pr.