Pedophile Bear Advertises Sex Offender's Computer Store

"Pedobear" is a cartoon bear used by Internet pranksters to symbolize pedophilia. But he just looks like a normal bear, and now a computer parts store is using him in their ads.

Pedobear apparently originated on 4chan's /b/ message board — the same one that launched a vigilante campaign last year against a girl videotaped tossing puppies into a river. Urlesque's Nick Douglas explains,

Pedobear is a shorthand for saying, "You're being creepy about a kid." If anyone on 4chan posts a picture of a questionably young looking girl in a sexy pose, someone will inevitably reply with a pic of Pedobear. Many times, Pedobear is added to a picture to point out real-world sexualization of presexual kids, but it's alternately shown as an acknowledgment of being inappropriately attracted to a child.

Also,

This admittedly risqué line of humor shouldn't be seen as condoning pedophila. Child pornography is banned on 4chan, and the site's users have helped authorities track down pedophiles. But the freedom to joke about it, even offensively, is part of 4chan's ethos of absolute free speech, liberty from censorship, and intentional bad behavior.

So, Pedobear himself may be evil ("In the many photoshopped images of Pedobear, he chases little girls, also called 'loli'"), but his use is a force for good — except in the case of computer parts store CP Distributor, which appears to have made its ad in a coupon book unintentionally creepy by co-opting Pedobear's image. Or was it intentional? The Smoking Gun points out that CP's owner Robert Dicks is a registered sex offender who was jailed for seven years for sexually assaulting a child. "CP" is also 4chan slang for child porn, and those letters do appear in rather large font in the ad. Writes TSG,

In an interview this afternoon, Hughart, the coupon book's publisher, claimed that the ad was designed by a female employee in her mid-40s who found the "Pedobear" image online while searching for clip art to include in the CP Distributor coupon. Hughart, who would not identify the designer nor allow a reporter to speak with her, could not explain why the art department employee chose to include a bear, of all things, in a computer firm's advertisement. Nor could he provide insight as to why the designer chose to put the letters "CP" in a larger type size nestled next to "Pedobear."

So this is either a cautionary tale about the dangers of Google image search, or a sort of ingenious stunt by a 4chan vigilante-cum-graphic designer. Either way, it's bizarre.

Pedobear Sneaks Into A Convicted Sex Offender's Computer Parts Ad [Urlesque]
A Beginner's Guide To Pedobear, The Internet's Favorite Pervert [Urlesque]
"Pedobear" Stars In Convicted Sex Offender's Ad [The Smoking Gun]