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Revenge porn victim sues Google, Yahoo, Bing to remove her name from search results

January 6, 2017  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Revenge porn victim sues Google, Yahoo, Bing to remove her name from search results

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A college student from New York City is taking internet giants Google, Yahoo! and Bing to court, demanding they remove her name from their search sites because she was the victim of revenge porn.

According to the New York Post, the lawsuit states that the 30-year-old woman broke up with her boyfriend last year.

After their three-month relationship had ended, the man posted a video on the internet of the two engaged in sexual activity.

The ex surreptitiously filmed the video without her knowledge or consent, the lawsuit reveals.

Because the woman is of West African origin, she has a unique four-letter last name, thus search results of her name are confined to the raunchy footage.

Now she is demanding that the search engines delete all references to her name because any search will show X-rated porn websites with links to the video.

Her attorney stated that the “revenge porn” has had an unfavorable impact on her career prospects and it has also damaged her reputation

“If you Google her name, everything is right there,” Ryanne Konan said, who is the woman’s attorney. “She can’t even get an internship.”

Konan wants the court to require the search engines to remove any remnant of her online.

Because there are no laws in New York against non-consensual sex videos, authorities did not arrest the ex when Konan’s client filed a complaint.

A legal expert interviewed by the New York Post wondered whether the woman would win the lawsuit since her name is public record.

The expert said that a Manhattan court would likely side in favor of the search engines.

Although requesting Google and other search engines to delete one’s identity is unique, there is a mechanism in place for removing “revenge porn.”

The support section of Google does offer step-by-step directions on taking down videos and images of explicit nature that were posted without permission.

Yahoo! also provides similar instructions, which ask aggrieved users to present ID and URL information.

Last year, Microsoft allowed users to file requests to remove revenge porn on its various platforms, including OneDrive, Bing, and Xbox Live.

Instagram, the photo-sharing app owned by Facebook, said that it does not allow any nudity or porn, but it does allow images of women breastfeeding, nude statues, and post-mastectomy.

“We know that there are times when people might want to share nude images that are artistic or creative, but for a variety of reasons, we don’t allow nudity on Instagram,” the company stated. This includes photos, videos, and some digitally-created content that show sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks.”

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