(BuzzFeed) – Though at first glance, the two men couldn’t seem more different — Jell-O commercials vs. sex-party book different — there are remarkable similarities between the scandals surrounding Bill Cosby and fashion photographer Terry Richardson, who’ve separately been accused of predatory behavior by more than a dozen women.
Richardson has never been accused of drugging and raping women, as Cosby repeatedly has, but the photographer’s alleged victims often say “Uncle Terry” used his industry influence and acclaim to coerce them into performing sexual acts. In many cases, as with Cosby’s alleged victims, there was the promise of a future job. Some of these women said Cosby and Richardson’s staff facilitated or otherwise witnessed the encounters. Many said they were aspiring models at the time. These allegations have been reported in the media for years — Cosby since 2005, Richardson since about 2010.
But the way in which Cosby’s and Richardson’s respective employers have responded to public outcry this year provides a new barometer for how long powerful men can maintain their reputations after the first whisper of misconduct. And both cases reinforce the ways in which these men are able to sidestep accusations until a crucial tipping point occurs.