One complained on social media that they were “private pictures” taken by her husband. For what? To remind himself what his wife looks like naked during those long lonely hours driving a truck or writing code? All he has to do is look up when she’s running from the shower to the dressing room (or keep the lights on during sex). If I told my wife I wanted to take nude photos of her, I’d be sleeping in the backyard in a pup tent for the next month or two.
And what exactly is the point of taking those gynecological close-ups? I don’t think any of the women hacked had significant others deployed overseas, where such a photo might help remind him what he is fighting for.
In a February column I wrote that when you knowingly pose for a nude photo, you are naive to expect that it will remain private for the rest of your life. How many times have angry boyfriends/husbands dumped nude photos of their exes on the Web, after swearing to god that they never would? How many nude SnapChat pix have been shared in that 10 seconds before they disappear (or more accurately, go into cloud storage)? Millions, if not billions.
Is hacking cloud storage the moral equivalent of breaking and entering? Absolutely. Should someone be prosecuted? Without question. Will it happen again and again? Count on it.
The mere fact that you decided to pose for such photos puts you somewhat at fault. It’s hard to crash Web sites with pics of you and the kids walking the dogs down by the lake. But not everyone agrees. The New York Times‘ Farhad Manjoo tweeted: ” I’ve never heard anyone respond to financial hacking by saying, Just don’t use online banking. That’s what you get for using credit cards.” When, in fact, that is exactly what people say to reporters all the time after such hacks: “I am dumping my credit cards and using only cash.”
Are there any real victims? Yes. Although Erin Andrews was clearly hired for her buxom looks as much as her sports acumen, someone stalked her and took nude video of her through a hole in the wall. That was a crime. The guy who did it eventually went to jail. But what about the paparazzi who caught The Duchess of Cambridge sunbathing topless with the future King of England? Was that a criminal invasion of privacy or just the usual Fleet Street idea of “news”? In neither of these cases were the victims posing for nude photos, which were taken without their knowledge or permission. Quite different from what we saw over the weekend.
Is it a compete defense to say, “Well, she has a RIGHT to be topless outside, and an expectation that no one is camera-peeping”? To which one might respond, “You are a public figure. People will pay good money to see your naughty bits. Behave accordingly.”
As Dear Abby used to say, “The only safe contraceptive is a pillow between your knees.”