The hacking and publishing on the internet of a number of celebrities' private photos has revealed more than these stars' naughty bits. The incident has brought into the open the truth about modern morality.

Where once laws, censorship and peer pressure helped us keep our baser impulses in check, these days we're on our own. Social network managers and even the FBI may try to control our access to these stolen pictures but the fact is, if we want to, we can find them.

In the modern world, we don’t even expect to tell other people what to do. Complaining about strong language or sex or violence in a TV programme seems almost quaint in a time when you can watch what you want when you want- or not.

If You Want It, You Can Have It

Just as there are caveman parts of our brain that haven’t caught up with our civilised life, we have 20th century habits that haven’t caught up with the internet age. For the last few generations, we have been a consumer society. We have been taught that if we want something, we can have it. But those things were what manufacturers pushed at us. The internet changed that.

As a marketer I am delighted that I no longer have to push messages at unwilling recipients. I can offer my wares and let people ‘pull’ out what they were interested in. Truly targeted interactive marketing builds up good relationships between consumer and supplier.

To Click Or Not To Click

The choices the internet has given us extend well beyond shopping and media. We are responsible for our own moral choices.

‘Pulling’ things into our lives that we know are wrong used to be quite difficult, now it can done in secret without moving from our computer. All that stops us now is our own self censorship.

It’s easy to click the button that brings nude celebrity photos to our screen but it’s our choice. There is no person,agency or God stopping us. Just as when we see an empty car with the engine running, we don’t have to drive it away.

You might even kid yourself that they’re celebrities and that these attention hungry women are getting what they deserve. You might say it wasn’t you that hacked the photos. But, if you know it’s wrong, are you any better than the thieves who stole them in the first place?

This blog was written by Paul Lewis, owner of the Winchester based marketing consultancy Seven Experience. You can connect with him on Google+ and LinkedIn.