Love & Sex

Israel’s New Law Will Send Revenge Porn Posters to Jail for Five Years

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The Hunter Moores of the world have lost another battle.

The Hunter Moores of the world (you know that jerk who ran revenge porn site Is Anyone Up?) have lost another battle and they have none of my sympathies. Today, Israel passed an amendment to the Sexual Harassment Bill, which will ban the posting of sexually explicit images and videos to the internet. While the law's umbrella seems wide, this measure was specifically written to curb the posting of revenge porn. 

The law states that the posting of revenge porn without the photographed person's consent will be considered sexual harassment, with a maximum sentence of five years in jail. It's the harshest revenge porn law passed yet. The Israeli MP didn't mince words when he told The Times of Israel that this law would put an end to the "shocking phenomenon of virtual rape." The law was written by MK Yifat Kariv last year after an Israeli man posted a video of himself having sex with an ex-girlfriend to an app called, of course, WhatsApp. The video got tens of thousands of hits.

As we know, what could be considered a tactless viral video can have insidious emotional consequences for the victims, but, ludicrously, only two states in the U.S. have laws against revenge porn. In New Jersey, the law prohibits the distribution of sexually explicit images without the subject's consent, often only fining those prosecuted. Passed in October 2013, California has a less inclusive law that still protects images that were taken consensually by the photographer. That's because American revenge porn posters are still protected by organizations like the ACLU, which claims posting junk shots is protected under free speech. But if a recent survey from Indiana University is correct, more than 50 percent of young people are feeling pressured to participate in nonconsensual sexting. It doesn't seem like our compulsion to take nude pics is going to change anytime soon, but our consent laws could stand to zip up. 

Image via Veer.