Online child exploitation started with bulletin board systems—rudimentary chat rooms that allowed pedophiles to upload and view images.
Most of them were scanned from European magazines, where child pornography was legal in some countries until the early ’80s.
A place where, as Levin wrote in one of his chat room profiles, “nothing is taboo.” The internet has transformed pedophilia from a private pursuit into an alarmingly social subculture.
Levin taught his daughters how to ride their bicycles, played silly games, told stories and sang the kids to sleep at night.
As they got older, he instilled confidence and helped them grow into self-assured women.
He was, as all his old friends wanted to tell me, both captivating and funny, a power-house academic who’d open a presentation with a joke from But underneath it all, Levin was breaking away from reality.
He started spending hours online lurking in sex chat rooms.
Eventually, he became an active participant, bonding with other users over increasingly disturbing desires.
The man everybody loved to love had a terrible secret: a digital world filled with fantasies of rape, incest and child abuse.
The Levin boys were all smart, but Benjy, as many people called him, was brilliant.
In high school, he was editor of a city-wide student newspaper called At 19, Levin enrolled in honours history at the University of Manitoba, where he also sat on the school senate and managed the basketball team.
He and Barbara would often take in nieces and nephews when they came to town, sometimes for several months at a time. By 2012, he was making close to 50 speeches a year all over the world, and he turned down as many invitations as he accepted.
That fall, he released his eighth book, called it “a convincing call to action.” At OISE, Levin advised doctoral students, making himself available to them at all times, and showing understanding and patience beyond the call.
In his first year of university, he used his bright likability to run for the Winnipeg school board.