Revenge Porn Vengeance

This is Craig Brittain and his legal to use mugshot!

The revenge porn industry is not a good industry to be in.  First, there’s tons of legit porn you can be a part of, so why risk it?  Second, once you get caught, you’re just lucky if all you have to do is pay massive fines, considering publishing other people’s photos against their will for money is a bit of a racket and could get you jail time.  All that for a topless selfie?  Seems pointless.

Craig Brittain is learning the hard way that revenge porn can get revenge on you and your ironic whining will get you nowhere after the fact.  Brittain used to run “Is Anybody Down,” a site that published nude photos of exes and pics they solicited off of Craigslist, none of which were given with knowledge they'd be put online, and would charge the owners hundreds of dollars if they wanted the pics removed.

The FTC and Brittain came to a settlement agreement which requires Brittain to destroy all his images, and never run a revenge porn site again, all because of his business practices which were harmful to the public.  And that’s all fine and good except now Brittain is crying that the media is making him look like a bad guy and posting his photos without permission.  Is his ploy to choke everyone to death on irony?  No one knows.

This is his Facebook page, which is also legal to share.

According to Brittain, he didn’t give anyone permission to use his photos in media reports.  According to the law, he doesn’t have to.  This picture here is a mugshot, and Brittain doesn’t own the copyright.  This is why it’s so hard for people to get their photos removed from revenge porn sites – unless it’s a selfie, a photo of you isn’t your legal property.  The copyright belongs to the photographer.  How do you prove who the unseen person behind the camera is?  Not so easy to do.

Brittain filed a complaint with Google to stop linking to over 20 sites that included his name and photo which he said he didn’t give permission for, even though most sites used a mugshot and were either government run sites, or legitimate media sources.  Basically they are all protected under fair use and First Amendment rights, since this is a news story and there’s no legal grounds to say you shouldn’t be included in a news story that’s about you.  Plus, complaining like this is a surefire way to get the media to publish your name – Craig Brittain – and your mugshot photo (here it is again) -

Still legal!

- a whole bunch of times, because you’re a creep who thinks he’s above the law.

This same “stop violating my privacy” complaint is often the go to line of reasoning for every scumbag on the internet after they get caught.  From other revenge porn aficionados to child pornographers, once they have been outed and their real name is attached to the crimes they’ve committed, they immediately try to portray the media as the real villain, exploiting them and trying to ruin their lives by exposing their names and private information – none of which is in fact private  at all at this point because it’s all sourced from the activities these people were doing online, and try to twist the situation to make them look like victims.  Imagine the mindset of a guy who posts child pornography who wants you to instead be mad at Gawker.com or Salon.com because they posted his real name without permission when telling the story and now his life and career are in jeopardy, as though suggesting the media can ruin anyone’s life, even yours!  Well, maybe, if you’re also a child pornographer.  Want to render the media powerless to ruin your life?  Don’t commit life-ruining acts of awfulness online.