THE vast majority of people don't want or need to know that Todd Carney was photographed in a "lewd act".
Maybe a couple of thousand of Carney's 40,000 Twitter followers would have accidentally seen the photo - and there are always those who seek out such things (myself included).
But it was the media that ensured millions, not thousands, of people would know about this photograph - and it is Cronulla Sharks who are guilty of overreacting to it.
How does it benefit anyone to know about this photo? Why do people care?
Why do we get our knickers in a knot over a stupid photo and then drop the ball when something happens that actually matters?
Todd Carney's career is in tatters, but lining up for the North Queensland Cowboys every weekend is Robert Lui.
He was banned from the game for a year after kicking and head-butting his girlfriend in 2012.
Former Cronulla winger Isaac Gordon received a nine-match ban for pushing his heavily pregnant girlfriend against a wall in 2011.
Neither of those men was sacked from his club, or embarrassed and shamed the way Todd Carney has been embarrassed and shamed.
In fact, at the time North Queensland issued a statement saying the club would support Lui's ongoing counselling with a view to him returning to the team during the next season.
I bet most people don't even remember these men being in the press, but everyone will remember Carney's faux pas.
I see the message the NRL is sending. Clearly it's a far greater crime to indulge in a silly prank than to assault a woman.