TRIGGER WARNING – Body-shaming, Consent Violations and brief mentions of Rape and Rape culture.
**This is not a response to any one individual and the thoughts and feelings in this post are exactly that – my thoughts and feelings. I have too much anxiety to debate with anyone about this matter today so please don’t**
Let me get one thing straight, I have always liked and openly supported Godemiche. I appreciated and still do appreciate the passion and skill that goes into what they do. HOWEVER, they need to get themselves off social media pronto; they’ve put their foot so far into their mouth that their toes must be tickling their intestines.
It’s time for them to hand over the reins to their platforms or LISTEN to someone who knows how to run a social media account that is body and sex positive. Their history of screw ups is growing. This has not been one small blip in an otherwise clean record.
Snapchat screw up.
The first Godemiche fuck-up was Adam letting a friend get hold of his phone and therefore giving this person access to all Godemiche social media platforms. The dude used one of the aforementioned platforms to ask followers for “tit pics, no dicks”. It was completely unacceptable on a multitude of levels and so Godemiche apologised for allowing it to happen.
I decided to forgive them (as I am often prone to doing).
Body hair shaming.
A video was posted on one of Godemiches social media platforms (of him watching Naked Attraction) in which he loudly dismissed pubic hair as “disgusting”. This video hurt so many followers. It hurt me and I like to think I’m pretty thick-skinned. I have cultivated a safe body-positive environment for myself online, eager to get away from body shaming, so to see a company I trusted openly making remarks like that was devastating.
Years of shame came flooding back when I heard those words.
If something you share on your company social media makes me want to run to the shower in tears, razor in hand then you are DOING SOMETHING WRONG.
People were quick to learn about Godemiches behavior after folks on twitter alerted us about the video. This ‘calling out’ was (and is always) an IMPORTANT thing to do for the community. Every existing or potential customer has a right to know that a company holds such views (AND AIRS THEM PUBLICLY). People got to make up their own minds as to whether or not they wanted to boycott Godemiche and that is honestly great.
Godemiche responded brilliantly to this particular screw-up. It was textbook and everything we can ask of a company trying to make amends. They PAID bloggers to write on the Godemiche site about pubic hair and body-positivity. They educated themselves and then did their best to educate others, I personally couldn’t have asked for more.
For some people however the use of words like “disgusting” with regards to something as natural as body hair were enough to ditch Godemiche for good (regardless of an apology). And I don’t blame them! Personally I appreciated the effort they put into righting the wrong and was willing to see it as a sign of growth. Godemiche were back in my favour and I was happy (enough) to continue supporting them.
The Adam Dildo, consent violation?
When Vice did a video on Godemiche, I tuned in like many other people and I did not like what I heard. https://video.vice.com/en_uk/video/vice-10-questions-you-always-wanted-to-ask-a-dildo-maker/59819db524674d6f21c8bd07
Basically Adam admits their realistic dildo is based on him and makes it very clear he sees it as a little part of him he gets to share with the industry. This alone is fine IF people know that when they buy the product. However, I would feel very violated if I bought a dildo with no knowledge of it being based on it’s maker only to find out whilst said dude was basically bragging in a VICE video about putting his metaphorical ‘dick stamp’ on the industry.
I knew about it being based on him and even I felt a bit violated and uncomfortable listening to Adam in that video.
Adam seems to feel quite connected to the Adam dildo and he referred to it as “modelled around, sculpted on” his dick in the vice video. In his eyes this dildo is clearly a little memento of him… or more precisely his dick. That for me is enough to give me concerns over consent. You can’t consent if you don’t have the full facts so those folks who say “buying the dildo was the buyer giving consent”, that’s only true if you are in possession of all the facts when you purchase. Since the information about it being modelled on Adam was not made READILY available (it isn’t on all products pages) its more than possible that people didn’t know and therefor were UNABLE TO CONSENT!
For those saying that all realistic dicks are based on someone: How about no. It is absolutely possible to design a dildo without looking at a real life dick. Here are some designs that took me about 20 minutes to draw up (I’m no artist so excuse the quality) and I managed to design these two (very different) designs without so much as looking at a dick pic.
It is very reasonable for people to not want to intimately use a product that has been closely based on a specific person.
Surprisingly some folks don’t want anything to do with a cis male dick for a REASON (sexuality/trauma/simply not being interested) and certainly don’t want to be a part of inflating your ego.
For those saying, “Well wasn’t it obvious? The dildo is called Adam!”: No, it’s not obvious. Firstly, plenty of people are not going to have any clue what the makers of their sex toys are called. Not everyone uses social media or follows Godemiche on snapchat. Secondly, there are plenty of dildos with human names that aren’t based on anyone. I’ve seen fantasy dicks with human names, and I’m not about to assume somebody found a dude with a three headed penis and a ribbed shaft to model it on.
The cluster-fuck Periscope.
Let me make one thing clear, at this point, I wasn’t angry. I was very concerned but I saw the Adam dildo as an issue where Godemiche had made an oversight (a big and damaging one but an accidental one none the less). They genuinely seemed to believe everybody knew it was based on Adam. It was far from okay (and a bit of a presumptuous attitude – surely everybody knows who I am?) but I felt they could fix the situation. Opening the periscope link I had my fingers fucking crossed. Please for the love of god just apologise I was thinking to myself. Please just say you are going to amend this error swiftly, re-write product pages and let retailers know. Even better, offer refunds for people who unwittingly brought a dildo based on you.
Unfortunately the periscope included none of those things but it did do a great job of belittling and gas-lighting bloggers and consumers. Adam’s tone right from the start was stand-offish and aggressive. I felt so uncomfortable throughout the video. People were being openly demonized for having feelings and being upset. Then to top it all off they then say that WE need to apologize? For what? For being made to feel violated or uncomfortable knowing we used or even reviewed a dildo that Adam clearly sees as part of himself?
“A part of me wanted to leave my stamp on the industry, as little or as large as it may be, if that product brings pleasure to people then wonderful”.
I do have to wonder how many reviews he has read knowing that people are essential talking about his penis.
The twitter response.
I don’t know how I can make it any clearer but if somebody tells you something made them feel uncomfortable you don’t get to tell them they are wrong! It is very possible that something that makes one person uncomfortable won’t make someone else uncomfortable but to have an unaffected person dismiss the feelings of the person who is affected? HELL NO.
I’m not arguing that anyone should not forgive Godemiche. I don’t mind if the screw-ups were too much it too short a space of time for you or if you are not particularly fussed about the whole thing. That’s FINE. What I’m sick of is people trying to make out that people are over-reacting because in doing so you are dismissing the feelings of hurt and discomfort that are voicing.
While I’m ranting (because lets face it that’s what I’m doing right now). Please for the love of god stop trying to exaggerate and exacerbate a divide between American and UK bloggers, we’ve done our best to fix that situation and we don’t need people trying to turn it into ‘us and them’ again. We are a COMMUNITY (besides there are plenty of UK bloggers who also don’t like what Godemiche have done too and US blogger who don’t mind, you just aren’t acknowledging us).
On twitter I’m left with the same feeling I get when I advocate for women’s rights, trans rights and for the end of rape culture. There are always people who have not experienced what I am talking about who are so ready to argue with me (someone who has experienced almost all of those things) about whether these are things that need to be fought for at all. Spoiler alert: they are.
It’s easy for people to thrust their opinion out there when they have no emotional investment. I’ve had arguments with men about rape culture so many times and it always end up with me feeling hurt and angry (or in frustrated tears) and them feeling A’okay or even thrilled at getting to have a debate. But debate where one person is not remotely affected by the topic and the other is negatively affected by the topic causes so much harm and almost always to the one who actually has experience with what they are talking about (for example, rape culture GOT ME RAPED TWICE but people who haven’t been raped still argue with me that rape culture doesn’t exist). In this situation one person has everything to lose and the ‘avid debater’ has nothing to lose because they aren’t AFFECTED by the issue!
In summary, it is easy to have an opinion and argue it when the subject isn’t negatively affecting you in any way (I.e. you don’t care what Godemiche did), but maybe you should take a step back and actually listen to the people it has affected.
I know that people know Adam in person and think he’s a great guy. Hey, maybe he is just misunderstood but that DOES NOT detract from the hurt he has caused.
I keep hearing “Adams a twat BUT…”, and it really sounds to me like the old “boys will be boys” line and to be frank… I’m sick of it.
As far as I’m concerned Godemiche have screwed up FOUR times
- Letting someone else use their COMPANY snapchat to ask for nudes.
- Calling pubic hair “Disgusting” on a another COMPANY platform.
- Not making the information about their flagship dildo being based on Adam readily available.
- The periscope response video.
If it were any other company? We’d all be fucking boycotting them.
For now, I’m done with Godemiche, If they can prove they’ll change, if they make this the LAST fucking fuck-up, APOLOGISE and set right the Adam dildo issue THEN I’ll re-consider my position.
I was rooting for Godemiche from the start and they only have themselves to blame for me no longer wanting to support them.