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Is "David After Dentist" Dad Exploiting His Kid?

today-show1David DeVore has extended his 15 minutes of fame to 13 months…and pocketed a boatload of cash. Remember him?  Devore is the guy who recorded his seven-year-old son post-dental surgery, sparking a YouTube phenomenon.

Little David was just waking up from anesthesia and is…well, groggy is putting it mildly…the kid was trashed.  Pop grabbed his Flip cam and recorded the patient’s drug-fueled musings, then posted it on YouTube so friends and family could share a laugh.

Clearly many people got the joke:  the video went viral.  Subsequent appearances on the “Tyra Banks” show and NBC’s “Today” sent viewings through the roof. Lucky for the DeVores, close to 54 million YouTube hits brings a pile of cash along with it.   In addition to getting a piece of the YouTube revenue pie, the family has created a website devoted to selling “David After Dentist” t-shirts and stickers.  Poppa DeVore was even asked to speak at South by Southwest, no doubt for a hefty fee.

Public reaction has been mixed.  Some feel that he’s exploiting the kid–a columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times went so far as to say that David Sr. should be jailed.  Dad rebuts by claiming that the kid is comfortable with everything and besides, the money will help pay for his college tuition.

“As much as he can understand, we’ve included him in the decision process and there’s been nothing he didn’t want to do that we have been involved in.  This fits David’s personality. If David’s personality and temperament were different, or if he had not liked that I had recorded [the video], then I wouldn’t have posted it.”

I don’t know.  The “as much as he can understand” part of that quote makes me a tad queasy.   I don’t think the parents should be jailed–that’s absurd.   But it always makes me slightly uncomfortable when parents benefit financially from their kids.   Kids should be kids–not profit centers.

In case you’ve been living under a rock, here’s the original video:

Read more here.

Image:  davidafterdentist.com

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