Sunday 4 December 2016

It's time we gave victims of revenge porn proper legal protection

Lorraine Courtney

Published 21/08/2015 | 02:30

Anna Richardson recently explored the issue of revenge porn in a documentary
Anna Richardson recently explored the issue of revenge porn in a documentary

How do you solve a problem like an ex? I like to swiftly end things and move on. But to be plotting out how to humiliate someone in public? That, surely, smells of a sad inability to get on with your own life. But who, in the heat of the moment hasn't fantasised about a little revenge - and now there's "revenge porn" specifically for that purpose, where disgruntled exes upload compromising photos online.

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Loads of websites exist just for this purpose, but it really can be done anywhere. And with more people sexting than ever, the odds that someone with revenge on their mind could embarrass you in public like that is now off the scale.

Journalist Anna Richardson explored this disturbing world in a Channel 4 documentary earlier this week. Using her own naked selfies as bait, Richardson discovered that it's more than a cottage industry for angry ex-lovers; rather, it's a disturbing phenomenon that's also linked to stalking, hacking and frenzied trolling. It isn't even limited to jealous boyfriends - it could be hackers, strangers on Tinder and even best friends - just consider Slane Girl's terrible ordeal. Richardson's documentary offered plenty of cautionary tales but, of course, there are precious few solutions to this sick trend.

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