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Revenge Porn Site and Its Host GoDaddy Face Class-Action Lawsuit

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Revenge Porn Site and Its Host GoDaddy Face Class-Action Lawsuit
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Operating on the outskirts of morality in porn (an already hard-to-define gradient), so-called “revenge porn” sites host images and videos of what are described as “exes.” Basically, the point is that guys extract “revenge” on their ex-girlfriends by posting their private sexual communications for the world to see. I know that it’s not always guys in the exploitative position and girls in the victim position – but that’s what happens in the vast majority of circumstances. We’ll just assume this going forward.

“Revenge porn” has been the topic of much discussion recently, as pioneer in the field Hunter Moore has been in the news as of late. But now, a group of advocates against the genre are looking to put it in the news for another reason. They’re banded together and filed a class-action lawsuit against a prominent site and the company that hosts it.

The group is “End Revenge Porn,” and the defendants are Texxxan.com and its host, GoDaddy.com. End Revenge Porn calls revenge porn a “form of cyber-rape.”

Texxxan.com is a site that specializes in pornographic images of girls from Texas, searchable by region. Users are allowed to submit images anonymously, and viewers can rate the images on-site. It’s clear from the site’s most-viewed submissions that it is or at least attempts to appear as a “revenge porn” site, as many of the images are of the amateur or candid variety.

GoDaddy, of course, is one of the biggest and best-known purveyors of domains around. You probably know them from their famously racy television ads.

In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs allege that Texxxan.com is “dedicated to publishing intimate photos of young women, and also publishing private facts about these women, all of which are done without obtaining permission of authorization from the women who are victims of the website.”

“The defendants are all acting in a deliberately reprehensible manner to participate in activity that they know to be malicious, hurtful, and harmful,” they say.

They are suing Texxxan.com and GoDaddy for invasions of privacy, intrusion on their right to seclusion, the public disclosure of private facts, the wrongful appropriation of their names and likenesses, gross negligence, and a handful of other wrongs.

They are asking for punitive damages, as well as an injunction shutting down the site.

Texxxan.com has yet to respond publicly to the lawsuit, but they have a disclaimer section on the website that reads:

TEXXXAN.com is only a platform for the viewers, users and members that visit the site to do as they wish. Those who find this website unacceptable must understand that if TEXXXAN.com did not exist their would most certainly be something else in its place. No one has ever been forced to visit TEXXXAN.com. On a side note the morality of this website has been discussed, reviewed and contemplated leading administrators to pass the decision on to the public due to the fact that this website is populated with content submitted only by viewers of the site. After running a poll asking the public if this site should be relaunched or shut down completely, the following results shown below where obtained clearly displaying that most of the population would rather the site continue on as it has in the past.

You can probably guess that their poll showed that 87% of voters think Texxxan.com should continue to operate as is.

The site also provides a sexting disclaimer, that basically says that people shouldn’t assume that anything they send should remain private, and that they shouldn’t feel bullied into sending something they’re uncomfortable with.

That doesn’t really cut it for the plaintiffs.

“I live in an extremely small town and the website was flooded with people that I knew,” said class-action member Hollie Toups. “Those of us on there go to the grocery store and everybody recognizes you. Not everybody says something, but you get a lot of like, ‘Hey, do I know you?’ or, ‘I recognize you from somewhere.’ But then you also get people that will just come out and say it.”

Like many revenge porn sites, Texxxan.com stands behind the famous section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects websites from being liable for user-submitted content. Of course, lawyers for the plaintiffs says that doesn’t fly in this case.

You can check out the full suit below:

Class Action Suit Against GoDaddy.com & Texxxan.com by betabeat

[via Betabeat]

Revenge Porn Site and Its Host GoDaddy Face Class-Action Lawsuit


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  • tom g

    WOW I hope that someone will use this to end copyrighted materials found on youtube. Yt seems to be able to get away just being able to say they warned the uploader about it being illegal. Should GoDaddy be responsible for what others put on sites HOSTED by them when YT IS the site with the illegal content? Maybe GD is not as imune form the law as YT is i guess!

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