Sending an unsolicited d*ck pic could get you fined

17 September 2019 - 00:00
By Tymon Smith
Image: iStock

Have you ever engaged with someone on a dating app and haven’t explicitly told them that you’d like to see a photo of their naughty bits, and they decide to send you a nude snap anyway?

If so, and you lived in Texas, the person who sent it to you could be liable for a fine of up to $500 (about R7,340), regardless of whether they sent it via a dating app, SMS, social media or e-mail. 

The US state this month introduced a bill that makes it illegal to send sexually explicit photos without consent. The bill was proposed by Senate Representative Morgan Meyer of Dallas in conjunction with the people who run the dating app Bumble, which is headquartered in Austin, Texas.

Fox 4 News reports that Bumble spurred authorities to introduce the law after it discovered that there was no legal recourse available to users who received unwanted and unasked-for pictures of genitalia from potential partners on the service.

How much of a problem are such unsolicited snaps? According to Vox.com "41% of women ages 18 to 36 said in a 2017 YouGov survey that they’d gotten at least one unwanted penis picture".

The company is now looking to introduce a similar law at federal level in the US. New York City also introduced a bill last year to ban unsolicited nude pictures after several subway riders reported receiving nasty pics of strangers’ bits via AirDrop during their daily commute.

Some critics of the laws have said that they are difficult to enforce and may mean that people who share pictures of breastfeeding or other images not intended to be sexual are liable for fines. However, supporters feel that this is an important step in trying to stop a uniquely millennial form of sexual harassment that has thus far been very hard to curb.

Would you like to see a similar law introduced in SA? Vote yay or neigh in the poll below.