In one of our electronic forums, a hot debate ensued. Bytes flew as people argued, for and against, the notion that if your, …er…private parts have been seen by more than one person, then you’ve renounced your right to calling them private. In other words, they morph into public parts.

I stood on the fence on this one even though I didn’t quite agree with what seemed to be the majority view. You see, I’ve been to private clubs, private parties, private schools, private hospitals and so on. I’m pretty certain I’ve never been on my own at any of these places.

Come to think of it, by virtue of walking out of your house and being seen by hundreds of eyes, do you become a public person? And, by extension, should my significant other cease to consider me as her private property simply because several other people see me every day?

I’ll let lawyers argue over that one. Or the women concerned.

However, while I may not be sure about the private or public nature of one’s body parts, I firmly believe that what you and your partner do with those parts is not public business. If you decide to digitise memories of shenanigans starring your parts, that’s your business. It certainly shouldn’t be the business of computer techies who’ve gained access to your storage media to publish those memories to the general public. They can gasp, drool, ogle or whatever but they should leave such data on the media they find it on without. They shouldn't be making copies and publishing such data as recently happened in Malawi.

Computer techies should be like doctors. You go to a doctor with damaged parts safe in the knowledge that it won't become public knowledge. How would you feel if the fact that you’ve been prescribed 16cc jabs on account of your crown jewels having one blemish or other became the subject of a viral e-mail? How would you feel knowing that your being unwell down there was a favourite topic not only at bridal showers but also watering holes around the country? How would you feel knowing that your doctor let on that your unprotected parts hadn’t emerged unscathed from your recent stint in the battle trenches of a Red Light district like Devil Street? How would you feel were your doctor  to publicise the fact that you’re contributing to global warming with your environmentally unfriendly practices of scything down every blade of hair in your nether regions?

I think it’s time information and telecommunication practitioners came up with an oath modeled on the Hippocratic Oath. Why re-invent the wheel? It might go something like this: “Whatever, in connection with my professional practice or not, in connection with it, I see or hear, on the hard disks or other digital media of users or clients, which ought not to be spoken of abroad, I will not divulge let alone publish in cyberspace, as reckoning that all such should be kept secret.”

Because this is about Information and Telecommunication Technology, or ICT in short, we shall call it the  Ictoractic Oath.

By the way, if there’s one thing I’ve learnt in recent weeks is that Malawians, men and women alike, love porn and will use any flimsy excuse to glue their eyes on it. In this particular case, they hide behind the veil of the newsworthiness of the whole saga, to view and discuss the sordid details of porn, down to the number and colour of beads, in public.

Malawians, you've just been outed as porn addicts.

Oh, I forgot. I’ve also acquired a new pick up line: “Tiye tikajambulane.”

8/5/2008 07:53:03 pm

komadi, i can't agree more with your last paragraph. i can see how mesmerized some people are at the mention of this famous saga - enanso oti timawapatsa ulemu, they are so worked up. zinthuzi ndiye kuti nzabwino eti? i wonder.

8/9/2008 10:23:44 am

nice article, and very funny too. would you care to join the google group and facebook for malawian bloggers?




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