Capitalizing on the conversation around catcalling and street harassment started by Hollaback's "10 Hours Walking in NYC as a Woman," upstart YouTube prankster Stephen Zhang upped the ante by filming a "drunk" woman as she tried to get directions to a bus on Hollywood Boulevard. Plenty of men were willing to "help" her, but not to her bus stop.
Hollaback's video demonstrated that street harassment doesn't depend on how you're dressed, what you say, or whether you look impaired: It happens anyway. Although it's billed as a "social experiment," Zhang's video is just a prank on the men who thought they were about to score, not a serious attempt to make a point about the risks women face just by being in public.
By setting up an especially vulnerable woman as bait and trying to catch creeps on camera, he's literally "asking for it." But that's not how street harassment—or in this case, attempted kidnapping and potentially worse—actually works: Women don't ask for it, and it's not something that only happens when they get drunk alone or dress "provocatively."
Of course, that hasn't stopped the #NotAllMen crowd from claiming that the predators are the victims here, and that if this "tease" had actually been intoxicated, anything that happened to her would be her fault. What did she expect, they ask? (Don't read the YouTube comments.)
For all its faults, Hollaback's video did at least advance the conversation, and the shit women go through just for existing caught some men by surprise. But it seems like the temporary cottage industry of YouTube parodies, spinoffs and pranks is taking it back a step. As Jezebel pointed out, there's no big revelation here, nothing to learn. Four scummy men? In Hollywood? Surprise!