Revenge porn site operators ordered to pay woman $385K

The unidentified plaintiff sued after discovering "sexually explicit images" of herself on the site that were taken when she was underage.

The founders of a revenge porn site have been ordered to pay a woman $385,000 for posting sexually explicit images of her on their Web site.

US District Judge Gregory L. Frost entered the default judgment Tuesday against Eric Chanson and Kevin Bollaert, who ran You Got Posted, a Web site that allegedly posted more than 10,000 sexually explicit photographs of individuals without their permission and then demanded payment for removal of the images.

The unidentified plaintiff sued the pair last May in Ohio after discovering "sexually explicit images" of herself on the site that were taken when she was underage. Tuesday's judgment included $150,000 for each of the child pornography claims, $10,000 for violating the woman's "right of publicity," and $75,000 in punitive damages, according to Marc Randazza, the plaintiff's attorney in the case.

Randazza, who referred to the defendants as "scumbags" in a blog post Tuesday, said the judgment should put the operators of revenge porn sites on notice.

"The message this $385,000 judgment sends to people who run revenge porn sites is unambiguous," Randazza wrote. "These sites irreparably harm their victims, and often without any criminal action against them. In this case, a civil suit allowed our client to obtain justice against the people who exploited her."

The defendants in the case could not be reached for comment.

Bollaert was arrested last December and charged with 31 felony counts of conspiracy, identity theft, and extortion related to You Got Posted, which allowed users to anonymously post private photographs containing nude and explicit images of individuals without their permission, prosecutors allege in court documents. The site required uploaded images be accompanied by the subject's full name, address, age, and social media profiles, according to the criminal complaint.

Victims wanting their images and information removed from the site were directed to a second Web site Bollaert created called Changemyreputation.com, where they could pay $250 to $350 to have their information removed, according to court documents. Between December 2012 and September 2013, Bollaert collected more than $10,000 from victims wishing to have their images and information removed from Ugotposted.com, prosecutors allege.

[Via Ars Technica ]

 

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