Posting 'Revenge Porn' is to Become Illegal in England and Wales

By Gerald Lynch on at

If your better half has sent some saucy pictures to your phone, you'd better keep them to yourself. That's because not only is it a royally dick move to post private snaps to the web or distribute them among friends but, as of today, it's to become illegal to do so in England and Wales.

The Criminal Justice and Courts Bill has received an amendment that covers posting private images on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, or sharing them through text messages. Physical distribution of images is also covered, so your photocopies won't cut it with a judge either.

To be specific, the law is concerned with "photographs or films which show people engaged in sexual activity or depicted in a sexual way or with their genitals exposed, where what is shown would not usually be seen in public".

It will receive Royal Assent today, allowing it to pass into law. Offenders can be locked for up to two years.

Scotland and Northern Ireland are considering introducing similar laws (though Northern Ireland's Department of Justice has existing laws that cover much of today's amendment already).

With many "revenge porn" images posted to the web hosted out of the UK, it's been difficult for victims to have them removed as they are usually hosted outside the UK. Though some have attempted to claim copyright on images taken as selfies, this has rarely been successful.

Image Credit: Male holding smart phone from Shutterstock