YouTuber Ruby Franke Sentenced to Prison for Child Abuse

    YouTuber Ruby Franke Sentenced to Prison for Child Abuse
    Photo: Chris McGrath/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    The Facts

    • Ruby Franke, a Utah-based influencer who offered parenting advice via a YouTube channel, has been sentenced to 4 to 60 years in prison having pled guilty to four counts of aggravated child abuse last December.

    • Judge Walton also handed the 42-year-old mother's business partner, Jodi Hildebrandt, the same sentence. The Utah Board of Pardons and Parole will ultimately determine both women's prison time, which will run consecutively.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    The so-called "momsfluencer" should be given the harshest punishment for starving, terrorizing, and torturing her children. It's implausible to imagine that a mother could inflict severe physical injuries and irreparable emotional harm upon her own flesh and blood. Franke should be put away forever in light of her shocking behavior and heinous crimes.

    Narrative B

    Franke was isolated, lived in a dark delusion, and was brainwashed into believing the world was an evil place. The woman should be given a lenient sentence as she is taking a step in the right direction to be accountable for her actions — demonstrating her remorse and regret — and has chosen not to go to trial for her children's emotional well-being.

    Narrative C

    Ruby Franke's case is shocking proof that anything you see on social media should not be blindly copied. It also brings the practice of "sharenting," which invades a child's privacy and violates ethical rules, under the spotlight. Franke's actions should set a precedent, allowing the state to protect the children whose lives are broadcast online as well as bar parents from using their children to earn millions on video-sharing apps.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that at least 31.2% of US children will be living with a single parent in 2050, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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