By Dave Roberts
KWCH 12 Eyewitness News
When it comes to posting something online, you’ve heard why you should be careful about what you post. But what about pictures that someone else posts of you?
“The problem is if the picture’s taken and it’s a real picture, it’s a real picture,” Charles O’Hara, an attorney, says.
O’Hara urges all of his clients to never post any pictures online, and to never have their photo taken by someone who uses a social networking site like Facebook.
“In today’s society, you have to be pretty careful about what you do because anybody can take a picture of anybody.”
It’s a warning that came too late for one Derby woman. Brandi Ruth hosted a party at her house and says she passed out in her bedroom. She was wearing only her boxer shorts and awoke to someone taking pictures of her with their cell phone.
“I was honestly completely and utterly horrified,” she said.
She asked the person to delete the picture, but Ruth says the person told her that the pictures would be posted on Facebook. Even though Ruth asked her not to and to delete it, the photos were uploaded.
“You can take any photos you want off of Facebook and save them to your phone, you save them to your email, you can do anything.”
Ruth complained to Facebook and says the pictures were taken down. She also filed a police report, but was told that no crime took place because there was no nudity shown in the pictures. Regardless, she plans to sue the photographer for defamation of character. Legal experts say proving that in court is not easy.
“If it’s done in a malicious manner, you’rer gonna have something,” O’Hara explains. “You’re gonna have to say, well I did that with the specific intent to hurt you. I was trying to make you look bad. I don’t know, that’s not easy to prove.”
Brandi Ruth gave us permission to show the photos that were posted on Facebook.