Revenge porn: think before you pose; think before you post

June 24, 2018

We all share intimate details (and maybe even photos!) with significant others. “What’s the harm?” we say, as we allow ourselves to be vulnerable around the one who we think has our best interests at heart. Six months later you have an argument that shatters the world as you know it, leaving you single and heartbroken. What happens to those intimate photos and experiences? Does your very-recent ex delete them? Do they live on forever in the scrolls of his or her iPhone?

Moments of panic eventually turn into fleeting feelings of unease, which end in forgetting the photos exist altogether… usually. This story could take a very different turn if your ex decided during a low moment of rage that he or she would post the photos for the world to see… just to get back at you.

This is called, “revenge porn.” In 2015, it became illegal to post sexually explicit photos of another person online without their permission; therefore engaging in revenge porn. Ever since the law took effect, however, it has raised even more questions, mostly regarding censorship. Critics say that the revenge porn law is too broad and one step too far towards infringing on our first amendment rights. A Texas Appeals Court took that opinion a step further, effectively blocking the revenge porn law in about twelve Texas counties a few months ago. Before you go and post away, remember that these are mainly Northeastern counties such as Dallas and surrounding areas.

Now let’s say you don’t live in one of those pre-discussed counties. What if we flip this scenario? You have a risqué photo of your ex from a few years ago and you have recently begun to post photos of the more artistic variety on Instagram. “What could it hurt?” you think as you click the share button, “she happily obliged when I asked to take the photo in the first place!” You may still open yourself up to a revenge porn charge if there was a spoken or unspoken “expectation of privacy” at the time the photos were taken.

In this case, you would need to prove that you had full consent from the person in the photos or that the person could not have considered there to be an “expectation of privacy.” You could also argue that it caused the “victim” no harm or that the photos were not posted because of cruel intentions, but that this is all simply a “huge misunderstanding.”

The reason is the easy part. The argument is the tough part. You need an experienced criminal defense team forming the argument for you.

For a free, confidential consultation contact the Law Offices of Daniel & Hudson at 210-222-2297. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.