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#1
Old 09-14-2015, 08:20 PM
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Traci Lords in Sept 1984 Penthouse

With Vanessa Williams being a judge at the Miss America pageant and getting that apology, I got to thinking about the September 1984 issue of Penthouse that first published the nude / erotic photos.

In this same issue, there were photos of Traci Lords, the porn actress who was later revealed to have been underage during most of her adult film career. Her XXX movies were pulled from shelves (all but the very last one). Her movies and the Penthouse photos would be illegal child porn.

Yet I see people selling the magazine on eBay allegedly complete.

So the question is whether anyone has ever gotten in trouble for being in possession of this magazine with the Traci Lords images intact?
#2
Old 09-14-2015, 08:42 PM
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Despite the efforts of some prosecutors, nude photographs are not inherently child porn.

Photographs must be sexualized.
Quote:
Federal law defines child pornography as any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a minor.
What does sexually explicit conduct mean? There is not and can't be a single all-encompassing definition. That doesn't mean that all nude photographs are or even that all nude photographs in Penthouse are.

AFAIK, no one has ever been prosecuted for owning that Penthouse, so the assumption that the photos are child porn is probably wrong.
#3
Old 09-14-2015, 08:59 PM
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I am aware of the definition and as I have not seen the images in question, I think it can be presumed that someone posing for Penthouse would be posed in some suggestive / erotic way. Let us not forget that the Supremes upheld the Knox conviction which, as I recall, involved video of fully clothed little children, not doing anything particularly erotic but the camera was zoomed into their (fully covered) "naughty" areas.

And recent issues where young people were threatened with CP prosecution for "sexting" which I think mostly involves just standing in front of a mirror. In one case a prosecutor threatened a girl who was photographed from the waste up wearing a bra and therefore no more exposed than she would be at the beach.

While those might not have resulted in convictions, I think an underage person posed as they do in Penthouse probably would.

Look at it another way: If young, underage teen girls could pose nude in Penthouse / Playboy type poses with legal impunity, where are such publications? The demand would seem to be huge. No, this would not pass legal muster and neither would the Penthouse images. I think the assessment that they constitute CP under law and case law is correct.
#4
Old 09-14-2015, 09:57 PM
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Playboy had a 16-year-old Playmate in its January 1958 issue. Again AFAIK, every retrospective of Playmates feature her centerfold along with the 50s CD-ROM and every other way that Playboy makes money on its past. (Cynthia Myers, the December 1968 Playmate, was 17 when she posed.)

Many Hollywood movies have had under 18 actresses pose nude. Thora Birch in American Beauty is one famous example, easily and legally available.

Yes, most certainly there is a hysteria about sexting. Yes, some attitudes have changed so that seemingly every instance of nudity is a sex crime.

But legally it ain't so. Your insisting that it's so without any evidence doesn't make it so. The backlash against the notion that teenagers must go to jail for taking a picture of themselves is already forming.

The GQ answer to your question is in your OP. Something that has never been prosecuted is probably not illegal.
#5
Old 09-14-2015, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase View Post
Playboy had a 16-year-old Playmate in its January 1958 issue. Again AFAIK, every retrospective of Playmates feature her centerfold along with the 50s CD-ROM and every other way that Playboy makes money on its past. (Cynthia Myers, the December 1968 Playmate, was 17 when she posed.)

Many Hollywood movies have had under 18 actresses pose nude. Thora Birch in American Beauty is one famous example, easily and legally available.

Yes, most certainly there is a hysteria about sexting. Yes, some attitudes have changed so that seemingly every instance of nudity is a sex crime.

But legally it ain't so. Your insisting that it's so without any evidence doesn't make it so. The backlash against the notion that teenagers must go to jail for taking a picture of themselves is already forming.

The GQ answer to your question is in your OP. Something that has never been prosecuted is probably not illegal.
I don't believe there was nudity in the film, but in Kubrick's '62 film Lolita, Sue Lyon, who played "Lolita," was only 14 years old during shooting. Still, a very controversial movie for its time. Even now, it squicks me out to watch.
#6
Old 09-15-2015, 03:19 AM
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Originally Posted by cmyk View Post
I don't believe there was nudity in the film, but in Kubrick's '62 film Lolita, Sue Lyon, who played "Lolita," was only 14 years old during shooting. Still, a very controversial movie for its time. Even now, it squicks me out to watch.
She was portraying a 14-year-old, but was actually 16 when the film was made.

There is no nudity in Kubrick's Lolita. Sex between Humbert and Lolita is only hinted at. The subject matter is possibly even more controversial today than it was when it was made, but the film is actually tame by today's standards.
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#7
Old 09-15-2015, 04:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman View Post
She was portraying a 14-year-old, but was actually 16 when the film was made.

There is no nudity in Kubrick's Lolita. Sex between Humbert and Lolita is only hinted at. The subject matter is possibly even more controversial today than it was when it was made, but the film is actually tame by today's standards.
In contrast, Brooke Shields appeared fully naked at the age of 12 in "Pretty Baby". Since she was playing a child prostitute, and one of the nude scenes involved her being "inspected" by a client who she later has sex with, it's hard to argue that the scenes weren't sexualised.

Nonetheless the movie remains legal and freely available throughout the western world. So the odds of a nude still of a 13 year old being illegal seems fairly remote.
#8
Old 09-15-2015, 04:35 AM
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Originally Posted by cmyk View Post
Even now, it squicks me out to watch.
LOL!
#9
Old 09-15-2015, 06:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman View Post
She was portraying a 14-year-old, but was actually 16 when the film was made.

There is no nudity in Kubrick's Lolita. Sex between Humbert and Lolita is only hinted at. The subject matter is possibly even more controversial today than it was when it was made, but the film is actually tame by today's standards.
No, Sue Lyon was only 14 when cast and filmed. She was still only 15 when it premiered. The novel specifies Lolita's age as 12(!) at the beginning (when she seduces Humbert). The studio wanted to say the film character was supposed to be older (like 16 or 17) but Kubrick got them to settle on simply not specifying. However the fact that Lyon was only 14 was kept quiet (she looked older). And I would say that the sex scene was more than 'hinted at'. It was (just barely) indirectly implied as strongly as the time would allow (for sex scenes in general, not just between a young girl and an older man). The 1997 remake went further, but only a little (no nudity). It included Dominique Swain undoing the fly on Jeremy Irons' pajamas.
#10
Old 09-15-2015, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Hail Ants View Post
No, Sue Lyon was only 14 when cast and filmed. She was still only 15 when it premiered. The novel specifies Lolita's age as 12(!) at the beginning (when she seduces Humbert). The studio wanted to say the film character was supposed to be older (like 16 or 17) but Kubrick got them to settle on simply not specifying. However the fact that Lyon was only 14 was kept quiet (she looked older). And I would say that the sex scene was more than 'hinted at'. It was (just barely) indirectly implied as strongly as the time would allow (for sex scenes in general, not just between a young girl and an older man). The 1997 remake went further, but only a little (no nudity). It included Dominique Swain undoing the fly on Jeremy Irons' pajamas.
If you read Lolita, you should quickly realize that the entire point of the novel is not just that Dolores is 12, but that she is pre-pubescent. Humbert actually loses interest when she goes through puberty. A sexy Sue Lyons may bother some people, but her story is not the novel's story. Yes, I realize Nabakov wrote the screenplay. Just goes to show that movies aren't books.
#11
Old 09-15-2015, 12:03 PM
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Brooke Shields appeared nude in Pretty Baby at the age of 10. She was portraying a 10 year old prostitute, if I recall correctly. AFAIK the movie is not deemed to be child porn.
#12
Old 09-15-2015, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by AHunter3 View Post
Brooke Shields appeared nude in Pretty Baby at the age of 10. She was portraying a 10 year old prostitute, if I recall correctly. AFAIK the movie is not deemed to be child porn.
She was 12, as noted previously.
#13
Old 09-15-2015, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AHunter3 View Post
Brooke Shields appeared nude in Pretty Baby at the age of 10. She was portraying a 10 year old prostitute, if I recall correctly. AFAIK the movie is not deemed to be child porn.
She was 12, not 10, as Blake pointed out a few posts above.

(And as Colibri pointed out ONE post above.)

Last edited by yearofglad; 09-15-2015 at 12:08 PM.
#14
Old 09-15-2015, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman View Post
....... Kubrick's Lolita......... but the film is actually tame by today's standards.
Tame and Lame! Easily one of the worst movies I've ever seen. My god! What a stinker!
#15
Old 09-15-2015, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Colibri View Post
She was 12, as noted previously.
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Originally Posted by yearofglad View Post
She was 12, not 10, as Blake pointed out a few posts above.

(And as Colibri pointed out ONE post above.)
Missed that post, thanks.
#16
Old 09-15-2015, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase View Post
...Yes, most certainly there is a hysteria about sexting. Yes, some attitudes have changed so that seemingly every instance of nudity is a sex crime...
...all of which should remind us of the old joke: Guy goes to a psychiatrist and the doc puts him through some evaluations. First up, the Rorschach test. He shows him the first inkblot and the guy says, "That's two donkeys, and they're mating." The next inkblot - the guy says, "That's a pile of four people and they're screwing." The next inkblot - the guy says, "That's two women and they're making love." Continues through the whole set the same way. At the end, the doc says, "Obviously, you are obsessed with sex." And the guy says, "Me?! You're the one showing me dirty pictures."
#17
Old 09-15-2015, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Gatopescado View Post
Tame and Lame! Easily one of the worst movies I've ever seen. My god! What a stinker!
Yeh. It was BAD. Even Sellers couldn't save it.

She was only 15 years old when it premiered, 14 when she was cast, and I believe 16 by the time it hit theaters. In the book, Lolita was supposed to be 12, but they changed it to 14 for the film.
#18
Old 09-15-2015, 03:02 PM
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There appears to be an important distinction that's being missed: The Playboy centerfolds from Decades past and Brooke Shields' appearance in Pretty Baby were, presumably, legal at the time they were made. They are thus probably covered by "grandfather" clauses in the laws.
But the Traci Lords photos in Penthouse were (probably) illegal when they were published. Penthouse ran those photos because they believed them to be of a person named Kristie Elizabeth Nussman who was 22, but they really were of someone named Nora Louise Kuzma who was 15 or 16 at the time.

As to the OP's request: while I don't know of anyone being prosecuted for buying, selling, or possessing that magazine in the US, I also don't have a particular reason why I would have heard about that. But I also know that in many countries in Europe those pictures would not have been illegal, and reportedly the adult films Traci Lords made are still available there, so perhaps the ebay listings you've seen are from people outside the US who assume that buyers will check to see what's legal where they live before bidding.
#19
Old 09-15-2015, 09:07 PM
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Originally Posted by SpyOne View Post
There appears to be an important distinction that's being missed: The Playboy centerfolds from Decades past and Brooke Shields' appearance in Pretty Baby were, presumably, legal at the time they were made. They are thus probably covered by "grandfather" clauses in the laws.

But the Traci Lords photos in Penthouse were (probably) illegal when they were published. Penthouse ran those photos because they believed them to be of a person named Kristie Elizabeth Nussman who was 22, but they really were of someone named Nora Louise Kuzma who was 15 or 16 at the time.
The law has not changed, but this site says the laws were clarified and tightened in 1967.
#20
Old 09-15-2015, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase View Post
Despite the efforts of some prosecutors, nude photographs are not inherently child porn.

Photographs must be sexualized.


What does sexually explicit conduct mean? There is not and can't be a single all-encompassing definition. That doesn't mean that all nude photographs are or even that all nude photographs in Penthouse are.

AFAIK, no one has ever been prosecuted for owning that Penthouse, so the assumption that the photos are child porn is probably wrong.
If this is the case, then why do porn magazines go to such lengths to ensure their models are eighteen? If what you're saying is correct, a magazine could openly sell pictures of women under eighteen as long as they're not engaged in actual sex. There's obviously a market for people that would like to look at nude sixteen and seventeen year olds but nobody is trying to sell to it. This suggests that there are legal restrictions against using under-eighteen nude models.
#21
Old 09-15-2015, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
If this is the case, then why do porn magazines go to such lengths to ensure their models are eighteen? If what you're saying is correct, a magazine could openly sell pictures of women under eighteen as long as they're not engaged in actual sex. There's obviously a market for people that would like to look at nude sixteen and seventeen year olds but nobody is trying to sell to it. This suggests that there are legal restrictions against using under-eighteen nude models.
I've been trying to find that tightened law of 1967 (if it exists) with no luck. Every site I do find has a disclaimer like this one:

Quote:
Above, I mentioned photographing and publishing nudes of someone who is 18 and the age of majority. There is actually nothing automatically illegal about nude photographs of minors. Think of images you have seen of babies, medical images, family photos, and the like. But for the type of images that you see on this web site, it is best to play it safe. Remember that 18 is not always the minimum. Check the laws in your area and, if in doubt, consult a legal expert.
In most times and places, prosecution for nude images of under-18 models will be automatic and successful because sexualization is assumed. Even without prosecution, distribution will be difficult. I wouldn't advise ever doing so.

Yet historic examples of mere nudes do exist without prosecution. For that matter, nudist publications abound and many have family pictures, almost the definition of non-sexualized nudes. These have been attacked at various times and places but I don't recall any notable cases in recent years. A line must exist in the law.
#22
Old 09-16-2015, 01:11 AM
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I'm no a lawyer but here's the federal law as written:
knowingly possesses, or knowingly accesses with intent to view, any book, magazine, periodical, film, videotape, computer disk, or any other material that contains an image of child pornography....
http://gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCODE-...0-sec2252A.htm
It seems to me (again, IANAL) that the weasel word knowingly could be problematic for prosecutors. The seller and the buyer can argue that they had no knowledge that the centerfold featured an underage model. After all, it's a major US magazine. EBAY can argue that they had no knowledge either but they can/will flag that item in the future.
#23
Old 09-16-2015, 03:53 AM
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Originally Posted by SpyOne View Post
But the Traci Lords photos in Penthouse were (probably) illegal when they were published. Penthouse ran those photos because they believed them to be of a person named Kristie Elizabeth Nussman who was 22, but they really were of someone named Nora Louise Kuzma who was 15 or 16 at the time.
I'm pretty sure Lords was 17 when the Penthouse pictorial was shot. But yes, they were fooled by the same fake ID she used to first do porn (and fooled the US Govt with to get a passport)...
#24
Old 09-16-2015, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Hail Ants View Post
I'm pretty sure Lords was 17 when the Penthouse pictorial was shot. But yes, they were fooled by the same fake ID she used to first do porn (and fooled the US Govt with to get a passport)...
Well, wikipedia says she was born May 7 1968, and appeared in the September 1984 Penthouse.
She started nude modeling in February, turned 16 in May, and made her first adult film in October.
Thing is, I don't know when the "September 1984" issue of Penthouse actually came out (I often get magazines dated "February" before Christmas, but sometimes get "August" near the end of September), and I don't know how far in advance those pictures were taken. So I can't be more exact than "15 or 16" for how old she was.
Her pictorial in Velvet apparently ran while she was still 15, as wikipedia says she dropped out of school because fellow students recognized her from it.

Remember, with the exception of Traci, I Love You, she was under 18 in every single adult film she made, and her adult film career started after being the centerflod in the best-selling issue of Penthouse ever. Since she made adult films for roughly 20 months, she couldn't have been 17 in those photos.
#25
Old 09-16-2015, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by SpyOne View Post
Well, wikipedia says she was born May 7 1968, and appeared in the September 1984 Penthouse.
She started nude modeling in February, turned 16 in May, and made her first adult film in October.
Thing is, I don't know when the "September 1984" issue of Penthouse actually came out (I often get magazines dated "February" before Christmas, but sometimes get "August" near the end of September), and I don't know how far in advance those pictures were taken. So I can't be more exact than "15 or 16" for how old she was.
Her pictorial in Velvet apparently ran while she was still 15, as wikipedia says she dropped out of school because fellow students recognized her from it.

Remember, with the exception of Traci, I Love You, she was under 18 in every single adult film she made, and her adult film career started after being the centerflod in the best-selling issue of Penthouse ever. Since she made adult films for roughly 20 months, she couldn't have been 17 in those photos.
Vanessa Williams resigned her Miss America crown in July of 1984, so the magazine had to have hit the newsstands in July or earlier. I have no idea of the delay between photos being taken and the magazine being released, but at the most, Lords was 16 yrs & 2 months at the photo shoot.
#26
Old 09-16-2015, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman View Post
She was portraying a 14-year-old, but was actually 16 when the film was made.

There is no nudity in Kubrick's Lolita. Sex between Humbert and Lolita is only hinted at. The subject matter is possibly even more controversial today than it was when it was made, but the film is actually tame by today's standards.
The Lolita as written by Nabakov in his novel is 12 years old.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blake View Post
In contrast, Brooke Shields appeared fully naked at the age of 12 in "Pretty Baby". Since she was playing a child prostitute, and one of the nude scenes involved her being "inspected" by a client who she later has sex with, it's hard to argue that the scenes weren't sexualised.

Nonetheless the movie remains legal and freely available throughout the western world. So the odds of a nude still of a 13 year old being illegal seems fairly remote.
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