The internet has changed a lot of things. Being able to freely share information has revolutionized numerous different aspects of life. One of these life aspects that the internet has changed on a basic level, but which rarely gets talked about, is pornography. On many different levels, pornography has changed because of the internet. One of these ways has been the creation of the idea of “revenge pornography.” Now, lawmakers are stepping in to try to prevent this method of cyberstalking by making it a crime in some states.
What is Revenge Pornography?
Revenge pornography is the dissemination of sexually explicit images or video in order to humiliate or manipulate the person in them. Two of the key differences between revenge pornography and regular pornography are the lack of consent in revenge porn, and the fact that revenge porn often includes information about the person in the content that is meant to identify them.
Repercussions of Revenge Porn
The subjects in revenge pornography have reported not only being humiliated, but also being exposed to workplace discrimination and internet stalking. Additionally, many companies do extensive online searching before they make a hire, which often reveals the existence of revenge pornography depicting a job applicant. This can often kill any chance of being hired.
While the concept of revenge porn is disturbing, so has the legislative response to it. More than half of the states in the U.S. have enacted laws outlawing revenge pornography. However, these laws are so broad and misguided that they catch a lot of conduct that they should not, and miss a lot of conduct that they were meant to prevent. As a result, a lot of innocent people have faced charges or lawsuits for disseminating revenge pornography.
Minnesota is the Newest State to Pass a Law Concerning Revenge Pornography
Numerous states are in the process of enacting laws that make it illegal to publish revenge porn. Minnesota is the most recent state to formally enact such legislation.
Under Minnesota's new law, it is illegal to disseminate private sexual images of someone else, without their consent, or to solicit sex on behalf of someone else without their consent. Violation of the law lead to up to a year in jail and a $3,000 fine. If there are aggravating factors, the charge can be for a felony, which carries a prison term of up to five years and a fine of up to $10,000.
Washington Domestic Violence Defense Attorney
While the state of Washington does not have a specific law banning revenge porn, like Minnesota now does, our state does have a cyberstalking law that can be used to prosecute people who disseminate revenge pornography online. These are serious charges, and need an effective criminal defense and domestic violence defense attorney to fight against them successfully. Contact the Seattle law office of Steve Karimi online or at (206) 621-8777.
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