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These days everyone is on some type of social media such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. With the ability to post your thoughts along with photos of just about anything, is this okay? Well in North Carolina the fist person to find out that it is NOT okay to post nude photos of a person online without their consent was a twenty year old girl from Apex, NC on April 1, 2016. This young lady was arrested and charged with the new law called “Disclosure of Private Parts” and she had to post a bail amount of $3000 with a bail bondsman.The General Assembly passed legislation back in the summer of 2016 making such postings a Class H felony and allowing victims to sue perpetrators for damages. The complete wording of the new law that went into effect on December 1, 2016, makes it a Class H felony for anyone to post explicit photos or videos of a person without their consent, with the intent to harass, extort, or intimidate the victim. The law also addresses punishment for minors, making this crime a Class 1 misdemeanor for anyone under the age of 18.
While many people are thankful for legislators taking action to protect victims of revenge porn, some legal professionals have suggested that criminalizing revenge porn restrains the First Amendment right to free speech because laws that address revenge porn are “too broad,” i.e. the laws surround too many events not related to revenge porn.
While revenge porn laws typically will not affect First Amendment rights because these laws will deal mostly with civil action, there are still many questions as to if this law is too broad. Are these postings more than just a joke or momentary lapse in good judgment. A photo or video on the internet can last a lifetime for the victim and can have devastating consequences when applying for a job, maintaining a relationship, or simply being out in a public place. Maybe North Carolina’s new “revenge porn” law will persuade people to “think before they post” to avoid criminal and civil consequences. In the moment of posting this malicious content it may seem like revenge but when someone gets arrested and they need to be bonded out, its not worth it!

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