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Is Australia’s Next Top Model Exploiting A 16 Year Old?

Cassi van den Dungen

Cassi van den Dungen

I have been lapping up all the publicity that ANTM have been generating for the new season, particularly about the antics of the modelettes. However, I am starting to thinking they are exploiting 16 year old Cassi Van Den Dungen, who is obviously pretty mixed up.
Yesterday it was about her being sent to anger management counselling (see previous blog post here.)
However today the Daily Telegraph has a story in it (clearly planted) that Cassi at 16 years old is engaged to her 25 year old builder boyfriend.
The article goes on to say:
  • She has moved in with her lover,
  • She has been expelled from schools,
  • She regularly drinks alcohol (ok this is not unusual behaviour for a teen)
  • She admits to hanging out with the wrong crowd, and
  • Her mother has moved to the US for work. 

Now I know all this information is designed to get us to watch her antics on the show, however I feel the use of a mentally fragile 16 year old (yes I know Cassi wouldn’t think she is), is the equivalent of allowing a girl with an eating disorder on the show and using that controversy to promote it.

She is probably started being villified on different ANTM forums.

Maybe I would not have an issue if Cassi was 18 years old and an adult, to have all this shock horror stuff emerging, but personally I think the producers have to be a bit more responsible with the younger contestants on the show, especially ones that don’t appear to have a caring adult looking out for her.

Am I being a wowser?



1 Bella Vita { 04.24.09 at 3:47 pm }

Plain and simple…ANTM are creating a hype of publicity and are using any goss they can scrape up to make sure we watch next week. Interesting to see that they leaked that she was being sent to anger management for the incident in Ep 3 (they obviously want us to watch to at least then!) Demelza anyone?

2 onadrought { 04.24.09 at 10:38 pm }

A bit wowserish

3 Reality Raver { 04.25.09 at 8:36 pm }

Bella Vista – Well the hype is working I will be watching it.

4 not telling. { 04.28.09 at 7:32 pm }

minus that comment :]

but im sure there is something they have left out

she knows what i mean

5 Lioniella { 04.30.09 at 9:43 am }

Many teens do just what they want. She’s no exception. And the ‘engagement’ won’t last, that’s obvious. She has so much growing up to do.

6 MissViv { 07.13.09 at 7:19 pm }

No not at all.
I feel a little ill about her bf being 25, what really could a man that age want with a 16 year old?
I dont care how “mature” the 16 year old appears they are not emotionally able to cope with the responsibilities of an adult relationship.
I am pretty sure she will turn up in a few years time working at Bunnings.
If her bf truely loved her he would let her try out this modelling while she has the opportunity, and at her age she needs a chaperone and as he is 25 he would be the one.
So……. whats the dillio?
I think he just wants her bare foot and preggers.