Revenge Porn and The Streisand Effect


By now most Internet denizens are aware of Revenge Porn sleaze Craig Brittain and the horrible website extortion racket caused by Isanybodydown.com. If you are saying to yourself who the hell is Craig Brittain and WTF is Isanybodydown.com, you can find out more here andhere. Essentially, he allowed anyone to anonymously upload nude photos along with information about the person on the photos (like full name, phone number, address, Facebook screenshots, etc.). Most of the people whose photos were uploaded were unaware and did not give permission for the photos to be displayed publicly (and certainly not with their personal information attached to them). There are also allegations that Craig tricked women (and men apparently) into sending him nudes and then posting them without their permission. The victims were able to get the pictures taken down for a fee of course, usually between $200-$300. In January of this year he settled charges brought by the FTC for violating the federal law.

WHAT DOES BARBRA STREISAND HAVE TO DO WITH THIS?

No, nobody shared nude photos of Yentl on Isanybodydown.com (well, maybe she had nudes there but that's not the point). So, if you are looking for Barbra Streisand nudes you will have to go somewhere else. Now, let's get back on track. So after Craig settled his FTC charges he decided it would be smart to send a DMCA Takedown request to Google. He isn't happy that there are a lot of articles discussing this story, and he wants Google to remove them from their index. Obviously Google is ignoring this request but his request has initiated the Streisand Effect, which is the phenomenon whereby an attempt to hide, remove or censor a piece of information has the unintended consequence of publicizing the information more widely. You see, by filing these irony laden requests Craig has garnered more attention and compelled even more articles to be written about this saga. The Internet, yours included, has obliged and there are countless articles about his latest attempt to ruin his own reputation.

BUT WHY?

I am not entirely sure , but I can't imagine that he is dense enough to not see the irony in what he is doing. And he can't really expect Google to honor his requests. The only thing that might make sense is that he is attempting to defend his behavior painting Google as the hypocrite. In essence, since Google won't simply remove the results he doesn't like, he should not have to remove the content he is allowing on his site. It would be absurd if true, but based on his past behavior I wouldn't put it past him. Google not removing legitimate news articles is nowhere near the same as him posting stolen photos along with personal information and then extorting the victims. Time will tell what his real motivation is but until then we can only hope he excuses himself from the Internet for a long, long time.

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