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HOW TO REPORT REVENGE PORN ON SOCIAL MEDIA

(last updated November 11, 2015)

Search engines and social media platforms are the latest allies in the fight against nonconsensual pornography.  In recent months, many major tech companies have created new policies banning it.  As a result, it is much easier than ever before for victims to report the humiliating content and have it removed. We still have a long way to go, but the recent strides are monumental, especially with search engines now removing links to revenge porn when a victim’s name is typed in.

Below are policies and reporting mechanisms for the following:

  • – Microsoft Products (Bing, OneDrive, Xbox Live)
  • – Google
  • – Instagram
  • – Facebook
  • – Twitter
  • – Reddit
  • – Pornhub (Note:  Pornhub has not published an anti-revenge porn policy, but has a removal mechanism.)
  • – Tumblr

REMEMBER:  ALWAYS TAKE SCREENSHOTS OF THE REVENGE PORN AND URL BEFORE REMOVAL!

TIP:  If you are the victim of revenge porn or a stalker, you should immediately shore up your privacy and security settings on social media and other accounts.  Make your Facebook account private and hide your friend list.  Make sure passwords to all your social media and email accounts are complex and unique.  Adopt two-step authentication whenever you can.

Microsoft Products: Bing, OneDrive, Xbox Live

On July 22, 2015 Microsoft published a powerful blog post about their new plan to put revenge porn victims "back in control."  It is by far the greatest display of activism on this issue we've seen from any major social media or search engine company. Microsoft will remove links to photos and videos depicting nonconsensually distributed pornography from search results in Bing and remove access to the content when shared on OneDrive or Xbox Live.

REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON BING, ONEDRIVE, XBOX LIVE: The form is here.  Links will be removed globally and the form will soon be translated into other languages.

Google

Google announced its ban on revenge porn on June 19, 2015.  Google's removal policy extends to "nude or sexually explicit image[s] or video[s] [that have] been shared without consent.  Even if Google deletes the site or image from search results, the webpage still exists and can be found through the site's direct URL, social media sharing, or other search engines. Google will not only remove pornographic images, but also when a person's name or business is showing up on pornographic sites. REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON GOOGLE: Google's form, which went live on July 9, 2015, is here.

INSTAGRAM

Instagram's ban on revenge porn, announced April 17, 2015, is a patchwork of several rules contained in its Community Guidelines.  The new policy applies to threats of revenge porn.  In its "Follow the law" section, Instagram states, "We have zero tolerance when it comes to sharing sexual content involving minors or threatening to post intimate images of others."  This combined with its policy against nudity (i.e. "[w]e don't allow nudity on Instagram.  This includes photos, videos, and some digitally-created content that show sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks.  It also includes some photos of female nipples, but photos of post-mastectomy scarring and women actively breastfeeding are allowed.") and intellectual property ("Remember to post authentic content, and don't post anything you've copied or collected from the Internet that you don't have the right to post") add up to a pretty comprehensive anti-revenge porn policy. REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON INSTAGRAM:  Instagram's method for reporting revenge porn is presently the same as reporting harassment or bullying.  Victims must fill out a form which is available here.

FACEBOOK

On March 16, 2015, Facebook rolled out its new policy against revenge porn.  Facebook's Community Standards section about "Helping to Keep you Safe" reads:  "Sexual Violence and Exploitation: How we fight sexual violence and exploitation on Facebook.  We remove content that threatens or promotes sexual violence of exploitation of minors and sexual assault.  To protect victims and survivors, we also remove photographs or videos depicting incidents of sexual violence and images shared in revenge or without permissions from the people in the images.  Our definition of sexual exploitation includes solicitation of sexual material, any sexual content involving minors, threats to share intimate images, and offers of sexual services.  Where appropriate, we refer this content to law enforcement." REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON FACEBOOK:  Facebook instructs users to report abuse by using the link that appears near the content itself.  This is a guide on how to do this for the various specific content that shows up on your page. Reporting a picture that's been posted on your page: 1) Click on the photo or video to expand it. 2) Click Options in the bottom right 3) Click Report Photo or if it's a video, Report Video.   Reporting abuse on somebody else's page:  1) Go to the page you want to report.  2) Click ". . ." on the page's cover photo. 3)  Select Report Page and follow the on-screen instructions.  NOTE:  Facebook may warn or disable the account of the person responsible. Reporting a profile:  1) Go to the profile you want to report. 2) In the bottom right of the cover photo, click . . . and select Report, 3) Follow the on-screen instructions. If you can't see the content you're trying to report, fill out this form. Reporting from your phone or mobile device is a little different. Go here for info.

TWITTER

On March 11, 2015, Twitter announced its new policy banning revenge porn. In the "Content Boundaries and Use of Twitter" section of  "The Twitter Rules" it regards revenge porn as banned "private information":  "You may not post intimate photos or videos that were taken or distributed without the subject's consent." REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON TWITTER:  Twitter has a special form for people reporting the exposure of private information, including intimate photos.  It is NOT necessary to have a Twitter account to report abuse.

REDDIT

In February, 2015 Reddit made this announcement about its new policy which went into effect on March 10, 2015.  "Last year, we missed a chance to be a leader in social media when it comes to protecting your privacy -- something we’ve cared deeply about since reddit’s inception. At our recent all hands company meeting, this was something that we all, as a company, decided we needed to address.  No matter who you are, if a photograph, video, or digital image of you in a state of nudity, sexual excitement, or engaged in any act of sexual conduct, is posted or linked to on reddit without your permission, it is prohibited on reddit. We also recognize that violent personalized images are a form of harassment that we do not tolerate and we will remove them when notified. As usual, the revised Privacy Policy will go into effect in two weeks, on March 10, 2015. We’re so proud to be leading the way among our peers when it comes to your digital privacy and consider this to be one more step in the right direction. We’ll share how often these takedowns occur in our yearly privacy report."

REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON REDDIT:  Notifications to Reddit about revenge porn should be sent via email to contact@reddit.com.  Its policy includes links to nude images.

Pornhub

As more and more websites devoted entirely to revenge porn are closing, we've seen an increase in revenge porn showing up on ordinary porn sites, particularly Pornhub.  It's essential to act quickly if a video of you is on Pornhub because it spreads fast. REPORTING REVENGE PORN ON PORNHUB: Although they do not have a written policy in place, they do have a Support Page.  There you can select "Content Removal Requests" on the dropdown menu.

Tumblr

Tumblr is pretty cheeky in its Community Guidelines (See the Privacy Violations section) banning "private photos of your ex's junk."  Let's hope they intend for their policy to apply to all victims on nonconsensual pornography -- not just those targeted by an ex. The form to report is here.  Unfortunately, they stupidly require that victims send in photo ID proving they are the one in the image.  Or a sign reading “Tumblr, this is me.”  Tumblr assures victims, “[d]on’t worry, these photos are kept private.” Yeah, victims have heard that line before.