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Can a man legally put up naked videos and pictures of you on the internet without your consent?

Raleigh, NC |

A friend of mine recently broke off a relationship with her boyfriend who is still in possession of sex videos and pictures that the two made together. He claims that he would not put it on the internet etc. however he has still not made any effort to return those items to her. Even if he did return them, it doesn't mean he's going to return the 50 copies that he made first. So, in other words, the fact is it doesn't matter if she gets those items back, but can he legally post those videos and pictures online without any repercussions on his part?

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Filed under: Intellectual property
Attorney answers 1


While I am not licensed in North Carolina, your issue is one that is generally governed by law that is similar and similarly applied in most states. Additionally, since your issue deals with the internet, federal law and those of other states may apply.

Unfortunately, if your friend's ex-boyfriend wants to keep copies of the sex videos and pictures the two made together, there may be little your friend can do to stop him. Generally, the ex-boyfriend who took the photos and is one of the subjects has rights to the photo. Unless he took the photos without your friend's knowledge, it is likely that he will not need her consent to display or use the photos in any manner that copyright or local decency laws allow.

However, he should not have the right to use your friend's photo/likeness for a commercial purpose or tries to sell them, he may run afoul of federal or state laws.

This answer is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship. Please consult a local lawyer to obtain legal advice that is tailored to your circumstances and facts. Good luck to you.