Toy is Secret Signal to Sex Traffickers, Â Says WFLA TV
By buying a plush toy with a heart on it, Tampa mom Nicole O’Kelly unwittingly alerted predators that her little girl “is ready to be traded for sex.”
Or so reports (if that’s the word) the station WFLA.Â Using a garbled mishmash of horror and hysteria, correspondent Melanie MichaelÂ told viewers that the toy, a pink stuffed truckÂ recently purchased at a Monster Jam event, “held a sick secret; a disgusting calling card for creeps. The heart on the toy was a symbol for pedophiles.”
The heart within a heart, the reporter continued, is “a symbol used online by pedophiles.”
While presenting Â no evidence whatsoever that the toy was made to be, or perceived as, some kind of secret signaling device, the reporter interviewed the toy-buying mom, who seemed as distraught as if her child had narrowly escaped a windowless van. “This is pink!” said the mom. “This is for little girls, especially at a predominantly male event.”
Does the mom think the “male event” deliberately stocked up on pink toys that so that unwitting parents would buy them? And then predators would see the symbol, and go, “Look! A heart on a toy. This mom must be willing to sell her child into sex slavery!”?
WFLA — and several other new outlets that carried the story — didn’t seem to care that this is the kind of storyline usually induced by certain mushrooms. It continued with a clip from a local detective:
â€œItâ€™s the most vile thing you could ever imagine,â€ said Pasco Detective Anthony Bassone.
Bassone said the hearts are used for girlsÂ while a separate symbol with triangles targets boys.
I had to look up to see if there was anything, anywhere, that suggested even a scintilla of truth to this assertion, and all I could find was an unbylined 2007 Slate article that referenced a single Wiki-leaked FBI memo from the “Cyber Division’sÂ Innocent Images National Initiative.” (Your tax dollars at work.) It asserted that pedophiles wear jewelry signifying their pre-pubescent predilections with triangles and hearts.
Even if that were true — so what? The heart on the pink toy…
Looks a lot like this heart…
Which happens to be on Good Humor ice cream bars (oh no!), which also happens to look a lot like this heart:
Which seems to suggest my fancy coffee house is a secret pedophile ring.
But back to the reporting, and Det. Bassone:
Bassone has been with the agency for more than 16 years. He has one tough job every day. And, what he encounters, he canâ€™t forget. He has to see the worst of the worst as he picks out pedophiles online and busts them, along with two other detectives in the cyber crimes unit at the Pasco County Sheriffâ€™s Office.
These investigators have to deal with the most horrendous, gut-wrenching, heartbreaking material. Sadly, they see children tortured and raped on a daily basis.
None of which has anything to do with a toy that has a heart on it. But it does have everything to do with putting a story on air that suggests pedophiles are everywhere, trading toddlers like baseball cards, when not hard at work designing devious plush toys.
The poor toy company, Feld, Inc., was also contacted by our Edwina R. Murrow down there, and it told the station:
â€œWeâ€™re shocked. We had no idea. We reacted immediately. We wanted to do the right thing as quickly as possible. Clearly weâ€™re in the business with providing high quality family entertainment. This was really obscure. Until yesterday, I had no idea there was an underlying meaning of these symbols and the deplorable behavior. We just donâ€™t know if a crime was committed here.
Can we assume that selling a toy with a heart on it is not a crime?
And can we assume that detectives who spend 16 years sleuthing for online creeps can get a little odd themselves, believing that even mass-manufactured toys are tools of the Pedophile-Industrial Complex?
And can we assume that when viewers are bombarded by a story this desperate to fan the flames of predator panic, we get a population ever more obsessed with sex offenders, ever more demanding of police protection, and ever more convinced that their kids are in constant danger, even from a plush toy?
Here’s the report. You tell me. – L
Maggie’s Farm links to story about what they dub as “Safety Industrial Complex”
Do the new heart symbols replace peodbear?
I’m thinking Valentine’s Day is going to take a hit.
Who knew yield signs were such a danger to our boys?
Or the Heart of A Marine Foundation. Hearts United Blood Drive.
You Can’t Be Too Careful ™
Huh? Does the heart emit a beacon over the house? Otherwise, I have no idea how a stuffed toy – generally kept INSIDE – alerts sex traffickers.
Never knew pedophiles were so organized that they had a design team working on logos.
I suppose child sex traffickers set up a booth at these events so that after a parent makes the purchase they can then wander over to the booth and complete the sale of their child.
It would seem to be more efficient for the pedophiles to sell these toys so the parents can save the extra step of buying the toy from one merchant and then completing the transaction (selling the child) with another.
I also think we need to call out the design team for perpetuating stereotypes with pink hearts for girls.
Just proves my point. People are in general morons.
When you can’t find a real story, make one up and see where it goes!!
Yes, but was the story “disturbing”?
Please please tell me this one is an Onion story too. It has to be, right? Right?
@bob magee –
“I also think we need to call out the design team for perpetuating stereotypes with pink hearts for girls”
LMFAO! Hilarious…this whole news report, since that’s apparently what its supposed to be had me giggling a bit as is, your post made it even better! Thank you! Haha
Seriously its absurd, the way they were first talking about the toy, I was expecting too see a hidden penis decoration! Nope, just looks like a toy geared towards girls, like most all girl toys. I love how the mom was so absolute that this was a perv calling card.
And how weird that was even a option for her to jump to ” it has to be sexual”. I know most people do when they see a childs toy, those hearts, inappropriate! I can only guess she thought the toy seemed so creepy to begin with because it was sold at a “predominantly male event”. Because men never buy gifts for a kid that’s there’s or they may know…ridiculous.
“A souvenir toy sold at a Monster Jame race event”
OK, so this event isn’t exactly selling Baby Einstein toys here. Was Grave Digger sold out and someone forced you to buy the pink fugly truck with pedohearts? And now you need to tell everyone and tell about the secret sex slaves at monster jams? Should I buy a tin hat, too?
I feel like I lost brain cells watching this news report.
And that is one ugly toy to buy. Seriously.
So that’s what the American Heart Association has been up to all these years. How absolutely diabolical — think how many people were utterly fooled!
Can I just get a visa to a new planet, please?
The secret to a secret society is for the secrets to be, well, secret. You know, like the Illuminati. It seems to me law enforcement agencies, especially the FBI, should be issued tin foil hats.
FBI — Full Blown Idiocy.
How many times can they use the word “disturbing?”
Read the comments below the news story. A bunch of people actually believe this nonsense.
Wouldn’t a secret symbol being placed on mass-produced toys that are sold to unsuspecting children and parents completely defeat the purpose of even having the symbol? If it’s carried by lots of people who don’t want to sell their children, then it’s no longer useful for identifying people who do.
And, I admit I haven’t watched the video, but how did the mom identify the symbol in the first place? Was she actually approached by someone who thought she wanted to sell her daughter, or does she spend a lot of time in pedophile communities?
Unfortunately, too many people seem to enjoy having drama in their lives, and are willing to create drama, if need be. Me, I’m busy enough just doing the ordinary things I need to do to get from one day to the next, so I really don’t feel the need to add another whole dimension to it by going looking for drama. The sensationalism of this story is over the top, and you can almost see the reporter salivating over the details of it (it’s pretty weird how she rocks herself forward at 2:15 on the tape). The whole thing is pretty sick, if you ask me.
Lollipoplover: I agree, that is one fugly toy!
Well, law enforcement should turn this to their advantage. Buy up all the heart-stamped stuffed toys, set up undercover cops in parks–wearing a school uniform and knee socks, sucking on a pacifier–and wait for the nasty pedophiles to swarm.
I’m betting Donald Trump will have something to say about this national crisis.
Well that wins stupidest news story of the month. I thought I was watching an SNL scetch. And I agree. How on earth did that mum “know that this was supposedly a pedophile symbol? Good lord. Are we SURE this was not the onion?
All I can say is that this story is a good example of why I think Republicans and Democrats voting this election cycle are so pissed off with the Ruling Class of the country. Between the economic problems and the propaganda our leaders are in denial about the 1960’s style scenario that is about to repeat.
Oh, and by the way, Florida residents should call the station and demand that both the news director and so-called “journalist” be fired.
I would be willing to bet that ‘toy’ was made by children somewhere in the Third World….
Imaginary pedo symbol – shocking. Child slavery – a really cool bargain.
I think this reporting will probably not be considered for a Pulizer…
Despite of being bombarded with pedophilia phobia during the last 20 years in this country, this is the first I’ve ever heard of a heart being a symbol for pedophilia. I guess all those men who give their wives and girlfriends valentine shaped candy boxes for Valentine’s Day are now closet pedophiles!
You know for as civil of a country that we live in, and I’m speaking about the United States, we sure are draconian when it comes to our fear of sex perverts stalking our children.
Case in point, wasn’t it just a few years ago they were saying that Barbie Dolls can be used to produce child pornography and that would put our children in grave danger? I mean…..please!
There also was a case I’ve read about up in Milwaukee just a few years back where, despite of being confined to a wheel chair, a sex offender who happened to live about 3 blocks from a school, had all of the windows in the back part of his house boarded up by authorities so he couldn’t see the school thru his back windows!
Now these cases don’t include the old urban myth about Disney World being a hotbed for child abductions and all of the Satanic rituals back in the 1980s where children within the community were stripped down and systematically raped by the police chief, the fire chief, the school principal, the school janitor and other upstanding people of the community.
So now a drawn image of a heart is a danger sign to children? I mean, is all this crazy or what?
Some people watch too many SVU episodes and have rather vivid imaginations. The reporters at WFLA have to be dumber than a box of hammers to believe this claptrap.
There’s the Ig Nobel Prize for dubious science – is there a similar award for dubious reporting?
OK that is one of the worst pieces of “journalism” I’ve ever seen. Was that even real?
“Wouldnâ€™t a secret symbol being placed on mass-produced toys that are sold to unsuspecting children and parents completely defeat the purpose of even having the symbol? If itâ€™s carried by lots of people who donâ€™t want to sell their children, then itâ€™s no longer useful for identifying people who do. ”
Quiet, Michelle, this is fear-p0rn! You’re not supposed to look at it logically!
Well, better ban valentines day. Too many hearts everywhere. Seriously. This is stupid.
People are just plainly “conditioned.”
(What do you expect?
Video games are only compounding the evils-of what television has done since 1945.
On a computer chat line, I asked, “did you ever play with skipping ropes?”
(This person asked me, “Is a skipping rope a sex toy?
As another example, I asked a person if he/she liked to waltz.
The person asked me if I was “gay.”
What a foolish question? A waltz is done by a mixed couple.
If I were at a dance, it is nobody else’s business-whether I am gay or straight.
The relevant thing is whether I act like a gentlemanly wholehearted dancer.
Okay, I finally forced myself to watch the report.
IT’S NOT EVEN THE SAME FREAKING SYMBOL!!!!!!
Even if this bizarre, illogical, inefficient “system” is a thing, it’s not even the same symbol.
Michelle: “Wouldnâ€™t a secret symbol being placed on mass-produced toys that are sold to unsuspecting children and parents completely defeat the purpose of even having the symbol? If itâ€™s carried by lots of people who donâ€™t want to sell their children, then itâ€™s no longer useful for identifying people who do.”
Exactly! So this whole thing makes no sense at all.
Btw, Good humor?? I know that company as Ola. They seem to have a different name everywhere! It’s got to be a secret pedophile ring trying to stay under the radar! Panic! Panic! 😛
Actually, pedophiles have been using these sorts of symbols to identify each other for many years. There’s no evidence they use them to find children to molest. The sort of pedophile who uses these symbols is usually an advocate of child consent, rejecting the idea that children are unable to give informed consent, so they aren’t generally looking to abduct or engage in any sort of forcible activity.
Here they are, and yes, the one on the truck is extremely similar: https://tuecaa.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/clsymbols.jpg
I will admit that this is disgusting…a disgusting parody of what used to be called journalism. Who are these “journalists?” Even the language they use – sickos, for one – calls them out as completely the opposite of reporters. And as someone pointed out, how did the mom even find this out? Either she knew this and bought it just to make a big deal of it or she brought the toy home and did some weird inspection of the toy, assuming this symbols MUST mean something. Hunh? The whole thing is weird and stupid designed for small minds and to get ratings. I can totally see this “news” channel’s upcoming ads highlighting how they were FIRST to break this story. So disappointed with the world. As someone pointed out, it’s not much of a secret symbol if it’s used all over toys, ice cream, and other products.
Do you remember “Teletubbies”? They used to be my daughter’s favorite… Well, there were no problems with them in the UK, their “Alma Mater”. However, in the States, a certain pastor became quite hysterical about Tinky Winky, the purple character with a voice like a teenager. He heatedly claimed that Tinky Winky is gay, that he will therefore damage the children, and “where are our pure values” our country is based on? He tried to ban the innocent show screaming that “we do not need that British import here”… Funny guy.
Well, the response from the toy company may have committed a crime, if bad grammar is illegal.
Clearly the pedophile moral panic has reached the same level of blatant absurdity as the satanic child abuse moral panic from the 1990s.
People’s ignorance and stupidity hurt my head. It’s baffling how these people can make up something in their heads from one simple thing that looks similar to something else with a different meaning.
Take for instance the swastika. The swastika (a very old symbol pre-dating all the world wars) was originally known as a symbol of good luck. It’s name actually means “well being”. But since the Nazis took it as their own symbol, like a good luck charm, the swastika is now more commonly associated with the atrocities of the Nazis in WWII. People are so easily manipulated and conditioned to believe whatever is required. People are so fearful and ignorant these days, and so conditioned, they do it to themselves now. And the rest of the sheeples follow.
I feel bad for the toy maker. They now have to go through the trouble of recalling all those toys and redesigning it before they can make anymore. I have no idea what size of company they are but that could sink a small business.
I would really like to know how the mother knew. I wouldn’t take a second thought at a heart design on a girls toy.
And the stupid expands.
At a quick glance I thought this story was a joke, particularly when I misread the TV stations call letters as WTFA. Seems appropriate.
i have a paperclip that looks like that. should i throw it away? or should i use it to bind my papers and ignore this nonsense? yeah, that’s what i think i’ll do.
You can’t make this shit up. Oh, wait – thats’s exactly what she did!!!
I’d like to see the data supporting the claim that children are tortured & raped every day in Pasco County. Can a county sue for libel and/or slander? Evidently CPS in FL is too busy meddling in more important matters.
Can’t it possibly be an actual heart intended to symbolize wholesome, regular love for your fellow human beings?
So all my friends who leave the heart within the heart symbol on fb when they’re showing support are secretly pedophiles?
What a ridiculous world we live in.
Yes, it was an entire truck rally of pedophiles, selling toys so they would…have an excuse? alabi? reason? for molesting the children? “but officer, she had the double heart symbol.” officer “oh, well then, continue on.”
Seriously what the hell?
Someone told her what a ‘hard on’ was and she thought he said, ‘HEART on.’
Ben, are you some kind of sicko? Aware people KNOW what that disturbing symbol means!
Oh my God, that’s the sign of one of Germany’s most popular ice cream brands. Does that mean that everytime I buy my daughters an ice cream I’m actually putting them up on the market for pedophiles? I’m so glad you Americans found out about it, I’m going to start spreading the news right this minute and throw it out of my freezer.
@ EricS: Because the Swastika was the symbol of the Nazis it actually is forbidden in Germany. You pay a fine or could even go to jail for up to three years. No use arguing that it’s much older ….
OMG! Conspiracy confirmed!!! I see the link now!!! Good Humor…Ice Cream…don’t pedophiles cruise around in ICE CREAM trucks to find defenseless kids to kidnap and molest?!? I’m pretty sure I’ve read that they do! Parents, keep your kids aware from the Good Humor man at all costs!!! Someone should enact some local ordinances…if it keeps one kid safe…ban all Ice Cream sales in your town immediately.
Thanks for helping us see the connection Lenore so we can act responsibly to curtail this sinister threat!!!
I have no words… but isn’t that the Roxy logo?
@pentamom: I know what the symbol means. It’s the logo of a well-known ice cream brand. (Ola in the Netherlands, but it has other names in other countries)
Seems strange to put that on a bear or a cushion…
Well, then, I think you are forgetting that a half dozen pedophiles and sex offenders were recently arrested as part of the “Hallmark greeting card sting” in upper New York . . . Anonymous investigators say that sex offenders are attracted to hearts on cards, especially red hearts . . . in the months of January and February. One of the favorite places of employment, of the offenders, until being exposed, was at certain greeting card companies.
Ok, maybe I missed it, but what on earth made this mom think there was something nefarious about the symbols on the truck? I mean does she check everything she buys with symbols of any kind against some national symbol database. Did someone come up to her and note the symbol and offer to purchase the child??? I am just so confused….
This is so triggering. I need a safe space.
” Anonymous investigators say that sex offenders are attracted to hearts on cards, especially red hearts”
What does that mean? They’re sexually abusing greeting cards?
As long as they purchase them first, who cares?
Wait a sec…
“By buying a plush toy with a heart on it, Tampa mom Nicole Oâ€™Kelly unwittingly alerted predators that her little girl â€œis ready to be traded for sex.â€”
It’s late and I’m tired so sorry if it’s a stupid question, but… If you trade X for Y, doesn’t that mean that you give X away to get some Y yourself?
So if Nicole’s little girl is ready to be traded for sex, it basically says that Nicole can use her as currency to get laid? With a predator?
Truly SHOCKING and DISTURBING!!! This represents “the worst-of-the-worst” (once again) in… JOURNALISM!
Ferdinand Francis Fernandez is a United States federal judge. He was appointed by The president and confirmed by the senate.
His initials are FFF. If you translate this numerically it’s 666! (a=1, b=2……..) I’m appalled that an obvious satan worshiper is allowed to be a federal judge!
Would love for Monster Jam to go after the station and mother in court. Be it liable, slander or defamation.
Once time when i was like walking by a place-i saw a swastika on the gate. I was like wowowo. Why is swastikas on that gate? Then a chinese man came walking out of the place. He was wearing a weird red thing. He told me that the swastikas were backwards. Then he told me that the backwards swastikas meant peace and they didn’t mean hitler. I’m not going to lie, I was relieved the place was not a nazi place!
The US military Purple Heart is a heart within a heart. So what does this mean?
@BL – reg hearts on cards…
“What does that mean? Theyâ€™re sexually abusing greeting cards?
As long as they purchase them first, who cares”
Lmao! Thank you BL! And to everyone else who made fun of this ridiculousness : )
Such nonsense is a perfect excuse for adults to focus their attention on sexual imagery involving adults and children – a kind of politically correct fantasizing. What more evidence do we need that the West is in the grip of mass hysteria?
Writers and speakers can actually keep a straight face when using the phrase “a parent’s worst nightmare,” referring to child sex abuse, as if a child being crushed to death in a car crash would be a lesser tragedy!
Papilio, it’s poor wording, but I think you could legitimately phrase it that way if you meant “traded for (the purpose of) sex” rather than “traded (in exchange) for sex.”
Anyone else reminded of the satanic symbols on the toothpaste tubes?
I’d better hide all of my daughter’s binders and notebooks, because she’s doodled the heart-within-heart image a thousand times. It’s her symbol for Best Friends Forever.
The myth-busting website Snopes is even telling people to calm down over this.
Apparently, some pedophiles *may* use coded symbols to communicate their “preferences” to other pedophiles, similar to the earring-codes, hanky-codes, or keychain-codes used by the GLBT community back in the day.
But these symbols are emphatically NOT used to identify kids who are “available.”
I still remember a news report from when I was in high school (about 15 years ago) about a mom who was freaking because the letter C on her kid’s toy was for “crack” instead of “cat”. It had a picture of what looked like the Liberty Bell with the crack in it, but she was convinced it was trying to teach her child about drugs. Commence full-blown news coverage, outrage, and toy recall. I thought it was ridiculous even then.
All those designer of “Mother’s Day” pendants have better watch out!
This one is extra pervy: http://s7d9.scene7.com/is/image/JCPenney/DP0225201417082215M.tif?wid=180&hei=180&op_usm=.4,.8,0,0&resmode=sharp2
I. Can’t. Even.
Oh, good, the President-elect has released a statement. Let’s see what he has to say:
Look, it’s a heart. It’s inside another heart. What is it? Who knows? Is it a pedophile thing? I can tell you, there are bad people out there, lots of bad people. Some of them like children, you know. Pedophiles are dangerous. They’re the worst people. Maybe it’s a pedophile thing, I don’t know. We’re going to look into it. Until we figure out what’s going on, we’re going to jail everyone at this toy company. Because, I don’t know, you don’t know, none of us know, and we have to figure out what’s going on.
@pentamom: That’s too bad 😛 Thanks!
This reminds me of a video that one of my friends shared on Facebook, about how the designs on cans of Monster Energy Drink prove that it’s Satanic. Sadly, my friend really, really believes this. 🙁
Also, I want to know if the mom from this video researched the rose symbol on the toy, too? Does it have some secret, evil meaning? Surely it’s not just… a rose???
In deprived areas the “fair trade” promise means that mums get a good price!
Not very convincing actors in video imo. Still think “Brass Eye” documentary about paedophile was better.
Brass Eye Episode 7 Paedophile Special https://youtu.be/tRIJ1B3Lsbc via @YouTube
Sorry I don’t really buy this one. I know the news reported it. However I think that few would take this seriously. Even the news reporters looked like they were struggling in their acting. (that is was serious)
The news has to fill in their time slot with news. This story tells me a lot more of their desperation to fill the time slot. They even get to the point where they ‘invent’ news out of nothing.
I consider this is ‘junk food’ for the brain. Even if you don’t believe this infotainment, it’s still harmful to have a diet of this crap.
Where to begin? A little further investigation suggests that while the detective who was interviewed is mistaken, the reporter exaggerated what he said.
As for the symbol, it is a common symbol that has been used by GirlLovers for quite some time – at least since about 2000 – but not in the way described in the article. It is used almost entirely online, and represents the relationship between an adult and a girl: the hearts are connected and are open, with the small heart inside the large heart, kept safe but not kept captive.
Girl Lovers object strenuously to any impositions put on children, so naturally do not have ANY symbol to mark a girl to be “traded”. The whole idea is anathema to the Kind community – and would be even if the proposed mechanism were not entirely stupid and impractical.
A little more reading for those interested in knowing more:
@Puzzled – **applause**
This just went viral on Facebook as the toy manufacturer has recalled the item. https://www.facebook.com/topic/Monster-Jam/107775302578873?source=whfrt&position=1&trqid=6261899045182069136
Hmm….everyone is freaking out over a symbol that may or may not have something to do with pedophiles but no one seems freaked out over the Black Panther’s raised fist symbol that is just below the pedo heart. AHA! I got it now! The toy was designed by a pedophile Black Panther member! I had no idea those guys frequented monster truck rallys.
So this whole time Good Humor was a secret pedophile conspiracy? This is just idiocy. Some parents should find a job instead of wasting our time like this. What on earth do they think is going to happen? Some pedophile will inspect her kid’s toys and find a heart and figure, “game on!” Idiotic.
People put too much emphasis on the recent history of symbols. When I was in middle and high school, I would doodle swastikas in my notebooks…mainly because they looked cool and it was the only thing I could really draw, lol. I was often scared I’d get caught and have to undergo therapy or something. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not racist or anti-semitic but it didn’t bother me that 40 years before the world had been in flames with people who adopted that symbol. For me, it was to pass the time with something I could actually draw.
And Baldur, this group might be free range, but I doubt they’re that free range as to be curious about the ‘Kind’. I had to do a paper on sex offenders for a Juvenile Justice class a few years back and I still feel dirty when I think about some of the websites I saw. (and they weren’t even pornographic).
Oh, and I mean the inside of the notebooks, I wasn’t completely crazy.
These people need help ! Why does everyone feel the need to be a victim ?
“These people need help ! Why does everyone feel the need to be a victim ?”
Because these days being identified as a victim is the surest way to obtain valuable gifts and cash prizes.
What an absolute load of crap. Though I do somewhat fear for this mother’s daughter, I mean, having that much of a ditz for a mom…
Hahahahaha Baldur Odensen, gasp, you actually seem to know something about this stuff!!! That must mean you’re in on it as well!!! Sigh. When will the hysteria ever end? Sure, pedophile means child molester, just like a symbol on a toy must mean…Really? Do I even have to finish that statement?
Good Grief. This was the #1 story on Yahoo News when I logged on this morning.
I saw that too Donna, thankfully the majority of the comments I saw were of the “wtf, seriously?” variety.
One publication says her older daughter,a fan of Law and. Order,SVU,noticed it…depending on how old her other daughter is…we dont allow our children to watch shows that solely focus on sex crimes..and,as mentioned,coffee shops,ice cream brands,all must be pedo-persuaders too…talk about being led around life via media influence,,jeezzz
Since this tripe is STILL all over the Internet, I have to continue to address this issue.
We are watching a moral panic unfold. Here is the shortest version of what happened thus far.
Nicole O’Kelly bought a toy at Monster Jam, her kid recognized the symbol from an episode of Law & Order SVU, which in turn borrowed a Wikileaks article, in comes Melanie Michael from WFLA, who wants to be first to spread the panic, takes the news that the symbol is allegedly connected to pedophiles one step further by proclaiming the symbol is “code” for “my kid is a sex slave,” thus combining the two great sex fears– pedophiles and sex traffickers. Other news outlets pick up the story, erroneously assuming that Melanie Michael fact-checked (she didn’t), and now this tripe is all over the Internet. To make matters worse, O’Kelly put on her Facebook page that she believed the other two symbols were also connected to pedophilia (the flower meaning virginity and the fist meaning control), and her friends helped her further perpetuate this moral panic. Company that created the toys get death threats and offers recall.
Sadly, no amount of fact-checking is stopping this moral panic. Redbook has attributed the claim that the symbol is a code for sex from a 2007 Slate article though Slate never stated that. The panic continues.
Both O’Kelly and Michael are equally to blame.
as a package designer who design a lot of heart logos i was shock and awed by this Pedophile brand. i’ve never heard of it and i’m an SVU fan.
1st. all brand is meaningless unless it is recognized. example: hogfish. ever heard of it? of course not. i made it up about 3 month ago and are working on design around the story. it is meaningless to all if it is invisible.
2. psychologically projecting one’s own phobia and anxiety on to a brand is over thinking something due to the fact you’ve got too much time on your hands.
3. as a logo designer ( wcw and uc davis logo was my design ) i can tell you when the pressure is on. we as designers will put the kitchen sink on the board to see what sticks. and in many, many times. the logos show up designs by someone else already. this is not intentional just what you have on your mind when you are press for time and it’s 12:30 at night.
4. I believe now more than ever. branding for big companies is way, way over-rated. I believe inform American consumers knows well head that “American” company are out-sourcing worker and component.
what is on the brand is often comes from over a dozen global factories.
if you want to support local business, forget branding or brands. go to those local business with your family on a regular bases the same way my wife always goes to “her” church. brand is about what you trust.
as far as I’m concern that heart with in a heart icon, I think it’s just a cute icon for a toy. nothing more. and this women is over reacting.
OH MY GOD! So, you’re telling me that Pink Floyd’s Darkside of the Moon and Law and Order: SVU are connected to pedophilia????
(In the original story, the heart symbol was seen on Law & Order: SVU).
I had no idea about this. I am glad some one is finally targeting pedophiles. Pedophilia is a disgusting act and those who commit this horrible crime should serve life in prison. I have done a lot of research about this kind if crime and anyone who thinks it does not hurt a child is wrong. This crime should not be tolerated under any circumstances. I know that pedophile rings are tightly run and no evidence of symbols or signals come to the surface. This protects the perpetrators. The people who run these crime organizations are usually well off, have a position of power or work in the psychological field. This way the child’s claim of sexual harm are silenced and dismissed. Most of these poor children are tortured in very unusual ways to maintain their silence and compliance. This is a very real event and a lot of the catholic church is behind this. All of the higher ups have sexually tortured children as well. The information available is limited so my knowledge of such things are limited. I think pedophiles found guilty in court should be thrown in the GP with some kind of special outfit that identifies them as child sex predators. This way the pedophiles will learn the suffering the child has gone through. Even violent offenders serving life in prison absolutely hate pedophiles. Pedophiles are usually jailed in a separate block and not allowed contact with the GP for their safety. Safety for a pedophile should not be considered. Pedophiles should have to endure the most violent environment known in prison, not protected. I personally hate pedophiles and anyone caught doing this to my children WILL suffer.
Monster jam does not and would not condone any such behavior
That mother is got garbage on the brain!
You,are most decently part of the problem. Do any of you think like a flesh peddler! Do you think like a pediophile? Are you willing to Let your child have a toy that there’s even a one percent chance will get it hurt. Kids take toys to the park. To their yard. How do you know who’s watching you and your child.
Name of episode??
Well Fay, if we’re going to be part of the problem, I’m glad we can do it decently! Now, please explain exactly how this toy puts a child at risk. I’ll wait.
Yuk!! OMG!! I must warn my relatives! I have seen this symbol on a coffee!I did not know icecream parlours are a meeting place even cafe’s!! Learn something new everyday!! Glad they got busted there should be more jobs available in law enforcement eploying people full time sleuthing these creeps i think my partner is one hence toys lying around house i get rid of them he loses his temper i have found adult mags with under-age girls in them i throw them out he asks where it is? He ia a control freak an di’m sure her associates with other pedos?They have htier own language and signs i have watched them closely! Even belonging to a Freemason Club.