Ben Philips is a somewhat famous video blogger on youtube. I was turned on to the antics about a year ago, and something about the exuberant sensationalization of his videos does not quite sit with me right. The first few videos I watched were harmless enough and quite amusing, but as I explored further many of the pranks became somewhat sadistic and distasteful. Most of the videos that I have viewed have been Ben pranking his friend Elliot Giles, who lives with Ben drinks excessively often, and passes out heavily- making him an easy target for the succession of pranks recorded and posted for the world by Ben. These pranks are perpetrated under the guise of attempting to deter the overindulgence of alcohol, but this has been going on since July 2015 and has not had any positive effect on Elliot’s Behavior; In fact, it has had a negative effect on the behavior of Elliot and society as a whole.
Elliot has retaliated and many young jokesters have committed excessive, elaborate, and extreme pranks hoping to achieve the status of Ben Phillips. So not only do these obscene pranks fail to deter Elliot’s alcoholism, but they also induce an exponential increase in exceedingly aggressive deviant behavior. There must be better control on the types of behavior that is idlized and encouraged on a mass scale. Elliot has been super glued and markered, shocked, moved out and back, dyed, buried, Kidnapped, and unnecessarily so much more. How could you continually physically and mentally torment someone, who you supposedly care for, for this long? I guess if it makes you famous, then by all means just waterboard the fool, just make sure you are recording and say “Sorry Bro.” before you start. You may think that I am being a bit radical, watch the kidnapping prank right now if you are not convinced that this emotional, mental, and physical torment is not conducive to an altruistic law abiding society. Browse the collection of videos for a short while, go through the progression from July 2015 to now. You will see resistance and attempts by Elliot to remove himself from the immoral, violent, and criminal environment- followed by Elliot’s attempts to assimilate and retaliate, gaining inclusive status- finally resulting in submission to prank target and the “benefits” associated with the tyrannical rule of the prank master. This is not just a moral matter, but a criminal one.
Elliot obviously reaps some benefits from his relationship with Ben or he would terminate it entirely, but do we want to allow crimes to be committed if the victim is appeased with remedial compensation or reward? Normally in matters like this the victim would have to press charges or take civil action, for both retribution and deterrence of further criminal behavior. There is precedent for third party intervention that could be implemented. When the victim of ongoing criminal abuse – whether it be from will, ability, or ignorance- fails to alleviate the detrimental circumstances placed upon them, it is the responsibility of society-by extension the government- to resolve the inhumanity. If we allow people to be publicly tortured for entertainment we will dampen our empathetic capacity and become further complacent with vulgar and violent behavior. Free Elliot Giles from the awful public spectacle of prank target, get him into rehab if he has a drinking problem, possibly get him some counseling or information for victims of domestic abuse. Subdue the rampant degradative behavior promoted and glorified by the dangerous, outrageous, tactless pranks carried out by Ben Phillips.