Terminology: ‘Group sex’

I thought I’d start a blog because I’ve been reading a few lately and think they’re a great idea for communicating ideas, especially when you get a  ‘am I the only one who feels like this?’ moment.

All the recent talk about Mattthew Johns inspired me to start looking for like-minded people on the web and to my relief, I found many:  (haven’t worked out how to link to other sites yet) Mainstream rants about the issue that support him and regard the 19-yr old in Christchurch as a dirty slut who got what she deserved make me want to cry. It seems that the dust has settled on the issue now  – it’s not really in the media much anymore. Some specific questions arose from the whole episode – the actual incident as well as how it was dealt with by the media –  that I’m pondering:

* The significance of the term ‘group sex’. ‘Group sex’ does not connote any power differentials within the group. It almost sounds like ‘orgy’ – as though everyone was having a bit of fun. I think the media’s persistent use of this term reflects the broader (and disturbing) belief that the woman involved was just as eager as the others. I also think that sometimes this term ‘group sex’ actually only refers to the group of footballers, and totally omits the woman/women.  The term ‘group sex session’ does the same thing – it is an activity that the boys do as a group to, not with a woman. If everyone was having a bit of fun and the woman invovled was treated like an equal member of the ‘group’ then the term ‘group sex’ would not irk me. But her testimony on 4corners clearly revealed that she was not an equal member of the ‘group’, but an object for the group to use. I am trying to think of a word to replace ‘group sex’. Maybe sometimes rugby players do participate in group sex – that is, maybe sometimes they engage in a sexual game with one or more women who they talk and laugh with and everyone goes home happy – but the particluar incident in Christchurch didn’t sound like that. A better term for this particular incident where a 19yr old was deceived into having sex with more than the 2 guys she had initially consented to have sex with would be ‘pack rape’


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