Vlogger Donnalyn Bartolome earned flak online for posting a sexy baby-themed birthday photo shoot to mark her 28th birthday. Bartolome was seen wearing a bib and a onesie and even sexily posing with a milk bottle. Netizens called her out almost immediately after she posted the photos last July 9. Some called her concept “disturbing” and “sexualizing toddlers.” Bartolome was criticized for “enabling pedophilic culture” and “promoting harmful fetish.” Hours later, she took the post down and issued an apology on social media.
Donnalyn Bartolome apologizes for baby-themed photoshoot
— Donnalyn (@DJBDonna) July 10, 2022
“It was an honest mistake, it was never my intention to enable one of the most horrifying acts here on Earth,” Bartolome said. She mentioned that over a million of her followers on social media thought the concept was “light and funny” since it suited her personality.
“..upon reading other people’s perspective, I completely agree,” Bartolome added. “I feel terrible, sick to my stomach, and had disturbing flashbacks I’d rather not say.”
Bartolome also responded to people saying she was enabling “sexualizing children.” The vlogger said that she has taken care of her siblings since she was 11 years old and is protective over them so enabling that behavior is “the last thing she would ever intend to do.”
After everything that happened, here’s what other celebrities and personalities can learn from this controversy.
Think about your concepts thoroughly
It’s astounding to think that no one from Bartolome’s team shot down the idea of a sexy baby-themed photo shoot. Just because it’s amusing to one group doesn’t mean it’s acceptable to another. This should serve as a warning for other celebrities and influencers to think their concepts and decisions through.
Be accountable for your mistakes
She even went the extra mile and first made sure she is the copyright owner of all the photos. This way, Bartolome has the right to take down all reposts of her photo anywhere. That’s taking responsibility for your mistakes.
Use your influence wisely
People will respect you for owning up to your mistakes
Many were skeptical that the whole photo shoot was an “honest mistake” but are satisfied with the measures Bartolome took to correct it. Pinoys trusted that she “could do better” and she did. As for folks out there who think her birthday photo shoot concept is acceptable or even “okay,” netizens reminded them why they should “reevaluate and think.” Many also reminded other influencers that it would do them well to listen to criticism and not “play the victim card when called out.”
Celebrities, personalities, and influencers should know that mistakes can’t be swept under the rug. They also shouldn’t “wait it out” until the next big issue comes along and buries their mistakes. They should learn from Bartolome’s honest mistake and how she handled it with a sincere response.