Blac Chyna and Rob Kardashian have been dominating celebrity headlines for years. Their turbulent on-off relationship has always succeeded in captivating showbiz reporters, encompassing social media scandals, failed engagements and huge televised spats. But drama escalated to new levels last week as Kardashian resorted to revenge porn.

Not only did Rob post a lengthy, damning rant across Instagram and Twitter, the reality TV star went a step further by posting a video of Chyna with another man (which he claims she sent him) and a series of explicit pictures. He was immediately removed from Instagram, but within hours he had re-uploaded them.

Revenge porn laws differ from state-to-state and vary in severity. As Broadly explained in a recent article, California law deems a crime to have been committed when a “person intentionally and publicly distributes unauthorized nude photos, knowing that they will cause emotional distress.” Chyna’s distress came through loud and clear in a recent televised interview in which she claimed she felt “betrayed,” as well as an online response which saw her accuse him of domestic violence.

Naturally, she has decided to press charges and take matters into the courtroom: “If you can’t respect me, you have to respect the law,” she said defiantly.

Despite having just had her privacy violated by a man she had seemingly once loved and trusted, Chyna quickly became a victim once again — this time at the hands of media outlets and online trolls quick to slut shame her and often link back to her stripper past. Even celebrities contributed to the abuse, with 50 Cent sharing an Instagram post reading: “I dated a Hoe once to [sic] I know how you feel.” Snoop Dogg also contributed with a well-intentioned video, which accidentally resorted to the same narrative: “She is what she is, she was what she was,” he said, again referencing her past and playing up to stereotypes.

Online users also implied that strippers can’t logically be victims of revenge porn because they consent to baring their bodies to rooms full of strangers. Or that the star sharing explicit pictures in the past means that she has consented to the sharing of any future explicit image — the obvious implication is that her body is fair game.

This is a misguided argument deeply rooted in misogyny. As Chyna’s attorney Lisa Bloom outlined in the earlier on-camera interview alongside her client, there is still a fundamental misunderstanding of the concept of consent, which this recent scandal has only served to underline. “Any explicit photos that she may have chosen to post in the past, that’s her choice. This is like saying that a woman can’t be raped if she previously chose to have sex with someone. It’s her body, it’s her choice each and every single time,” Bloom said.

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blacchyna / Instagram

This isn’t the first time Chyna has come under fire for her alleged promiscuity. Back in 2015, she appeared at the VMAs alongside one-time close friend and SlutWalk founder Amber Rose wearing outfits emblazoned with insults, essentially reclaiming the abusive words she had been subjected to.

It’s also worth drawing parallels to the famous 2014 “Fappening 1.0,” which saw hundreds of celebrities — most of whom, unsurprisingly, were women — subjected to a horrific intrusion of privacy. Explicit images began to leak online at an alarming rate, raising important questions around online safety which eventually led to iCloud safety measures being tightened. Unlike Chyna, the women involved were universally deemed to be victims and were treated as such. The circumstances surrounding the Chyna drama are similar, yet the reactions are markedly different. It’s also worth noting that few people have touched on the domestic abuse allegations despite the fact that Chyna is currently pursuing a temporary restraining order.

There are times, however, when it seems like the narrative is slowly shifting. Amber Rose’s SlutWalk is a series of international protest marches calling for an end to victim-shaming and sex work stigma, whereas movements like #freethenipple – although criticized for its lack of intersectionality – are exemplary of women self-sexualizing as a form of empowerment.

That said, we still live in a society that is quick to profit from sexed-up female bodies. Advertisers rarely move past stereotypical depictions of women because they still believe that sex sells, despite recent research suggesting otherwise. When a woman like Blac Chyna makes money from her sexuality by taking her talents to the pole, she is crucified publicly. Despite enjoying success as a stripper, many have branded her a gold digger — a claim that she politely acknowledged in the aforementioned interview, explaining: “I was already Blac Chyna before the Kardashians.”

Here is the paradox: Chyna is slut-shamed when she earns her own money in strip clubs, yet vilified for supposedly rinsing Rob Kardashian of his wealth and profiting from his family’s fortune. When she posts her own risqué images in an attempt to reclaim the sexuality she is so often shamed for, she is said to be a hypocrite. In other words, the rights to her body are not her own.

blacchyna / Instagram

The fact is that women – whether they are lawyers, strippers, teachers or sex workers – are in control of their bodies. Consent is relative; one nude post does not mean that someone can share private images and expect no repercussions. The depressing fact is, however, that the rate of prosecution in many territories is still significantly lower than it realistically should be due to multiple factors including – but not limited to – shame, trauma or the lingering feeling that revenge porn won’t be taken seriously.

The reaction to Blac Chyna’s own ordeal proves that these fears are often justified. If nothing else, the saga has only underlined the depressing reality that slut-shaming often forces women to suffer these crimes in silence.

Next up, here’s what LGBTQ fans think about Tyler, the Creator coming out.

Words by Jake Hall