Leaked nude photos are unfortunately the topic of this month’s entertainment news across America.
Earlier this month, private photos of celebrities including Jennifer Lawrence, Ariana Grande, Kirsten Dunst, Kate Upton, Selena Gomez, and more surfaced on 4chan, an image-board website. Contrary to what some people seem to think, when a celebrity has a naked photo stolen from their personal account (in this case, their iCloud accounts), this is not an all-access pass to look and relay the picture to others.
Celebrities, like us, have every right to privacy. The photos that have not yet been removed from the web are stolen property and should not be gawked at or dwelled on. These pictures aren't from movies that these stars agreed to be in. These published pictures represent every person's worst fear of humiliation.
Immediately following news of the scandal, reps and publicists spoke on behalf of their celeb clients. Lawrence’s rep, Liz Mahoney released a statement shortly after the pictures appeared.
"This is a flagrant violation of privacy. The authorities have been contacted and will prosecute anyone who posts the stolen photos of Jennifer Lawrence."
Model Kate Upton broke her silence when attorney Lawrence Shire released the statement, "This is obviously an outrageous violation of our client Kate Upton’s privacy. We intend to pursue anyone disseminating or duplicating these illegally obtained images to the fullest extent possible."
Other stars like Victoria Justice and Ariana Grande have spoken out saying the released photos are fake. Justice tweeted herself saying, "Shortly after I tweeted about certain pics of me being fake, I was faced with a serious violation of privacy. There have always been fake photos of me on the internet, but I will not be put in the position to defend myself as to what is real or what is fake. I am angry at this massive violation of privacy, and like the other women who are in this situation alongside of me, I am taking legal action to protect my rights."
The FBI is currently investigating these massive photo hacks. A statement released by the Los Angeles FBI read, "The FBI is aware of the allegations concerning computer intrusions and the unlawful release of material involving high profile individuals and is addressing the matter. Any further comment would be inappropriate at this time."
The most recent reports suggest that perhaps this 'project' had been in the works for months if not years. Police are looking into the possibility of not just one hacker, but a group of hackers who went in on this together - each collecting their own photos to be released as a group. This also explains why some pictures have been removed from the Internet while others are still lingering around.
Violation of Privacy
As I write for a site dedicated to an audience of women who are mothers, sisters and friends, I think it’s important to realize the extreme violation of privacy these young women have fallen victim to. As many other publications like Cosmopolitan and E! pointed out, saying that these photos should not have been taken in the first place is similar to, if not the same, argument that suggests that women shouldn't wear short skirt if they don’t want to get cat called... or worse.
For these pictures to have been pulled from celebrities’ personal phones and/or computers is a crime that cannot be undone. While the hackers will hopefully be found and brought to justice, the distribution of these photographs cannot be taken back. Unfortunately, this can happen to anyone, celebrity or not.
Those looking at these photos and passing them on are not looking to see beautiful women, but to continue the humiliation of women who are (surprise!) naked under their clothes, just like men. Celebrity male nude photos rarely surface in the public eye because their humiliation is not perceived as that at all. When a women’s naked photo is leaked, she is turned into something shameful and humiliation is inevitable, especially when people smirk or ask for a copy of what’s being published without their consent.
We encourage friends and readers to not look at these photos or pass them on.
To avoid a hacker breaking into your personal messages and files, never give out a password or trust any email or notification that seems suspicious.
The privacy of young women in the public eye has been compromised in the highest degree and in order for women to gain back their trust in society, refusing to look is a step in the right direction so this doesn't happen again.
Photo Credit: PR Photos