Revenge Porn Victims Caught Between Tech and the Law

Overview

This short piece examines shortcomings in both technology and legal remedies for so-called “revenge porn,” and makes an argument in favor of properly applied restorative-justice approaches.

Excerpt

By mapping out the rights and responsibilities of both plaintiff and defendant, Peters argued, restorative justice could rebalance the power differential, reducing the government’s role in favor of the victim’s.

In other words: No longer would a victim have to serve as a witness in the government’s attempt to prove an invasion of privacy or offense to public decency beyond a reasonable doubt. Instead, they would be able to describe in their own words the impact that nonconsensual intimate image sharing had on their life and livelihood. They would be able to ask questions of their own.

And they could have a say in what “restoration” might look like for them.

It has already been used successfully:

  • In a Wright County, Minnesota middle school, to respond to the revenge-porn-like offense of cyberbullying.
  • On U.S. college and university campuses to address student sexual misconduct.
  • In Oakland, California, as an alternative to zero-tolerance policies, where the Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth (RJOY) program reduced suspension rates by 87 percent.
  • In Ontario, Canada, to practice accountability, reduce the likelihood of future offenses, and make incarceration a last resort for sex offenses.

Peters acknowledges that in order to work, restorative justice requires the right systems and structures.

“We have to ensure we meaningfully elevate the victim’s perspective in the criminal justice process, free of coercive dynamics that result in manipulation of victims to the offender’s benefit,” he explained.

Read more at The Crime Report

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.