Posted on | January 23, 2013 | 73 Comments
When a friend told Hollie Toups that topless photos of her had been posted on an Internet pornography site, she felt horrified, but she didn’t feel alone: She recognized more than a dozen other South Texas women on the website, she said.
Last Friday, Ms. Toups and 16 other women filed a civil lawsuit in Texas state court against the site, Texxxan.com, alleging that their intimate photos were posted illegally and included information that made them easy to identify. They are seeking damages and to have the site closed down. . . .
Legal experts say they are seeing an increasing number of such lawsuits targeting so-called revenge porn, in which intimate images are posted online, often by jilted former lovers but also by computer repairmen or hackers who gain access to private photos. . . .
“I’m not saying I’m perfect, but I’ve been exploited,” said Ms. Toups, a 32-year-old graduate student in criminal justice, who lives outside Houston. She said she had sent the photos years earlier to a former boyfriend, wasn’t sure how they had ended up on the Internet, and hasn’t sued the former boyfriend. She said the photos appeared on the website alongside a link to her Twitter account . . .
Notice the contradiction: Hollie is stupid enough to send naked photos of herself to at least one of her (perhaps numerous) boyfriends, but Hollie is also smart enough to attend graduate school in Texas.
Talk about your Higher Education Bubble . . .
Hollie and her fellow “revenge porn” plaintiffs want you to think they’re victims of something besides their own stupidity:
Erica Johnstone, a San Francisco lawyer who has represented about a half-dozen victims of revenge porn sites, said that “the emotional toll on women can be devastating,” and includes depression and anxiety.
Ms. Toups said she at first became reclusive last summer, when she learned that her revealing photos had landed online. “I shut everyone off but my mom,” she said, adding that when people greeted her in public, she wondered, “Is it because they are polite or have seen me topless?”
It’s because you’re dumb, Hollie. And also because you’re a naughty girl.
See, here’s what this lawsuit is really about: These tramps are suing for the right to keep their promiscuity secret. They want to be able to send naked photos of themselves around the Internet — “Woo-hoo! Check me out!” — whenever it suits their fancy, but they imagine that somehow they can keep it from becoming general knowledge that they are the kind of girls who send naked photos of themselves around the Internet.
The lead lawyer for the Texas plaintiffs, John Morgan of Beaumont, Texas, said he plans to sue the owners and operators of the porn site once he learns their identities.
“None of these women consented to having their photos used,” Mr. Morgan said, adding that all of his clients subsequently suffered bouts of depression. “This site has to be shut down.”
“None of these women consented to having their photos used” . . . how?
That’s the question, you see. The women consented to having their photos “used” by whomever the chosen recipient was. And when they hit the “send” button on their computers, they consented to that usage, but are now suing because the implied contract between naked-photo sender and naked-photo recipient has been breached, and that the property which the sender in fact consented to share with the recipient was subsequently shared with others, and that the “revenge porn” site is now deriving profit from that breach of (implied) contact.
But how do we know that Hollie Toups or any of her fellow plaintiffs are telling the truth about how their naked photos got online?
Hollie Toups says she only sent her topless photos to only one of her ex-boyfriends, but are we just supposed to take her word for it? For all we know, she was sending those photos to prospective “sugar daddies.” Such arrangements are reportedly all the rage nowadays:
As college costs continue their stubborn rise, and with work harder to come by during an anemic economic recovery, some students are resorting to a rather unusual measure in order to pay their college bills.
“Sugar Daddies,” wealthy older men who provide financial support to younger women in exchange for sex and companionship, have seen a rise in popularity among college students struggling to find a way to pay tuition.
College student membership on SeekingArrangement.com, a website that matches sugar daddies and sugar babies, has increased by 58 percent from December 2011 to December 2012
“Currently, we have over 2 million members, 44 percent of which are college students,” Leroy Velasquez, public relations manager at SeekingArrangement.com, told ABC News. ”It’s very difficult to retain a part time or full-time job, especially when you have an academic life. With SeekingArrangement, we offer these types of relationships.”
Doing the math here — 44% of 2 million — that means there are 880,000 college girls currently seeking “sugar daddies” via the Internet, and who knows what kind of photos these girls are sending to their . . . uh, clients? Patrons? Benefactors?
Do I have any reason to believe that these Texas floozies were using their naked photos for such purposes? No. But I can’t rule it out, either.
Notice that I am trying to be as deliberately offensive as possible.
It’s not that I am entirely insensitive to the “emotional toll” suffered by these women, it’s just that I’m sick and tired of people trying to blame others for their own stupidity, then expecting everybody to view them as victims, when the answer to their problems is just common sense:
DON’T TAKE NAKED PHOTOS OF YOURSELF! DON’T LET YOUR BOYFRIENDS TAKE NAKED PHOTOS OF YOU!
STOP BEING SUCH DUMB SLUTS!
And stop expecting the rest of us to feel sorry for you.