California lawmakers aim to crack down on 'revenge porn'

By on August 28, 2013, 7:15 AM
california, porn, revenge porn, misdemeanor

A proposal to crack down on revenge porn was recently debated in the California State Assembly. Senate Bill 255, which passed in the Senate earlier this year by a vote of 37 to 1, would make posting nude or graphic content of a person online without their consent a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $2,000 and one year in prison.

As the law currently reads, it is illegal to film or photograph someone fully or partially undressed in a private place without their content. The proposed revision would add to that by making it illegal to distribute photos or videos with the intent to cause distress even if the person had originally given consent or supplied the offending matter to begin with.

In a statement on the subject, Senator Anthony Canella said law enforcement currently has no tools to combat revenge porn or cyber-revenge. It’s a growing trend that is destroying the lives of many victims, he added.

One such example is Audrie Pott, a California teen that committed suicide earlier this year. She was allegedly sexually assaulted after drinking too much and passing out at a party. Nude images of the 15-year-old were taken and circulated around school in the days leading up to her death.

Those against the bill believe it will carry unforeseen consequences against free speech if applied to consensual nudes or public protests.

How do you feel on the subject? Do you believe there should be strict laws against revenge porn or perhaps the subject of the explicit content should take responsibility and assume that any content deemed inappropriate could ultimately end up on the web?

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