Cam Newton sits on his couch, staring somewhat attentively into the webcam attached to his laptop. The times he looks down are used to peck intermittently on the keyboard below.
Other times, he pauses only to brace for a smile that spans ear to ear and is either a catalyst for or reaction to his friends’ nearby laughter.
For any other college student, this would be a typical Tuesday oasis, a playful escape between mid-term exams and bottomless cup specials at the preeminent campus watering hole.
But for the 21-year-old Newton, undisputed leader of the No. 1-ranked Tigers and presumptive favorite to win the Heisman Trophy, personal videoconferencing sessions are made entirely too sinister and, even worse, entirely too public.
Late last week, a number of brief videos featuring Newton and mostly only the voices of friends began popping up on YouTube. The content of each fails to include anything more than Newton mumbling nearly inaudibly as he types and an unspecified number of friends giggling in the background.
The most engaging in the series, which is up to five as of Dec. 1, is a four-minute montage of stills of Newton and said friends, with the classic “Lean On Me” as its soundtrack.
The videos are, for lack of a better term, anti-climactic. Yet, the person responsible for uploading the material, referring to him or herself as “02thescoop,” has assured us that the end game, for lack of a better phrase, is a full-blown storm.
The YouTube user claims that “hours of video” show Newton and several other Auburn players exposing themselves to an unidentified woman while on the computer, completely unaware that the woman was actually a webcam model leading them on.
The user also claims that the footage, along with corresponding “audio, texts, and transcripts,” is in the process of being shopped to the highest bidder, with the final sale presumably to take place in the waning moments before the BCS National Championship—or whichever bowl Auburn finds itself in.
Consistently using the title “webCAM” to label the videos, the YouTube user makes it a point to chide Newton, deriding the All-SEC quarterback for his behavior in the midst of an ongoing NCAA investigation.
Which begs the question: If you have an agenda against Newton, why wait to carry it out?
Doing a search term for “Cam Newton webcam” on Google reveals only the discussions among interested parties from the fan bases at Auburn, LSU, and Alabama. The Google News index provides only a link to the Web site of a telecommunications company in Denmark.
Without proof, this isn’t a story worth much examination, and its longevity is zilch simply because the public doesn’t seem to care. Nor should it, even with Newton’s newfound celebrity.
Alas, this is the world in which we live. And there will always be some idiot whose sole interest is to tear others down.
Even if it means defaming a man for playing on his computer.