Back off matey, I’ve got copyright protecting my bits and pieces!

June 25, 2016, By

 

A Californian student brought an interesting lawsuit against her ex boyfriend recently, by suing him for copyright infringement.

 

The work in question was a home made video and some photos that the girl had taken of her naked self and sent to her then boyfriend. Unfortunately, when the couple split, the jilted ex took revenge by posting them online.

 

Since she took the pictures, she owns the copyright in them. That means she has the exclusive right to do certain things with them, such as copy them and to distribute them to the public. By posting the video and photos of the session on the web without her permission, he had infringed.

 

The rise of incidents of this nature, termed ‘revenge porn’ by the media, is largely attributable to the proliferation of smartphones that allow photographs and videos to be taken and then quickly and easily uploaded to the internet. You need no significant skill to do it and once an image is on the internet in digital form it can be reproduced infinitely, with no loss in quality and spread over vast geographical areas, reaching masses of people, within seconds.

 

In the UK, aside from copyright infringement, other civil remedies include the misuse of private information, breach of confidence and harassment (which also has criminal teeth). Criminal offences committed by uploading revenge porn can include blackmail, improper use of a public electronic communications network or the offence of sending letters with intent to cause distress or anxiety. Taking explicit images of somebody without their knowledge could also be an offence of voyeurism.

 

So, all in all the message is don’t do it and if you are a victim and you want to investigate taking action with the help of copyright and its civil law friends, contact BRIFFA.

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