I’ve just seen this post on Cosmopolitan about the psychology of revenge porn. They consulted forensic psychologists, researchers and staff from the Revenge Porn Helpline to gain another perspective and insight into revenge porn. This can be found here. I hope you find it useful and interesting.
This post provides a brief overview for anyone who has been victimised by non-consensual pornography and isn’t sure what action to take. It’s also for anyone that knows a victim and would like to help them. Please note that the following information is for victims based in the UK only…
Understandably, the first thing that you are likely to want to do is remove the image or video.
The Revenge Porn helpline are excellent at getting intimate material removed online and they can also help with Anon-IB forum boards which can be particularly tricky to remove. Their website can be found here: www.revengepornhelpline.org.uk and their telephone number is 0845 6000 459 (charges apply). You can also email them with a link to the image/video that you need removed and they will do their best to help.
If the image has been uploaded to a website/social media channel, please do contact revenge porn helpline. They are likely to be able to help you to remove the image. You could also directly contact the website and some social networking sites are quick to respond. Please note that unfortunately, many specific revenge porn/porn sites are unresponsive to removal requests. It’s also important to note that if the website is based in another country, they do not necessarily have to remove the image. Again, the revenge porn helpline team are excellent with these cases.
When contacting websites or thinking about taking legal action, it is wise to seek some advice or representation by law firms. You may want to contact Queen Mary University of London’s Legal Advice centre; they have trained student advisors who dish out free legal advice under the supervision of lawyers. There are also several specialised law firms popping up that focus on representing victims of online crimes (see McAllister Olivarius or Brett Wilson LLP).
Once you have contacted a solicitor/lawyer, they may suggest seeking an injunction from the courts. You can apply for an injunction if the publisher or website are refusing to remove your images. This stops the further publication of the images elsewhere and if an injunction is worded carefully, it can also prevent further distribution.
You may also want to report your victimisation to the police who can charge the publisher under the new Revenge Porn law that came into force in April of this year. There are several laws that the publication can come under, especially if some blackmail is involved or if you are under the age of 16.
I hope you have found this brief overview helpful.
This blog is focused on providing support and information to those affected by non-consensual pornography as well as technology-assisted dating violence. It will also provide information and raise awareness about these crimes for anyone and everyone who wants to learn.
I am a Psychology graduate and researcher, and would love to create an online support network for those affected by non-consensual pornography. I am passionate about supporting victims of sexual crimes and intimate partner violence, and I understand how important social support can be for recovery. Please feel free to follow me on Twitter (@revengepornhelp) for information or support. You can also email me if you would like one-on-one support or if you just need a chat (email@example.com).
Thanks for reading and I hope to chat with some of you soon,