< Revenge Porn's Latest Frontier

Transcript

Friday, December 02, 2011

BOB GARFIELD:

Hunter Moore is the creator of the website isanyoneup.com, an amateur pornography and revenge site with an insidious social networking component. The way the site works is users submit naked photos of people, an ex-girlfriend, for instance, submitted say by a former partner who was looking for vengeance.

Rather than just publishing a naked photo online for the world to see, Moore’s site also includes a link to the naked person's social networking profiles. Not only does that process create more of a flesh and blood victim, if someone googles that person Moore’s site will likely be one of the top results, making that unauthorized photo all but impossible to avoid.

Moore says that the social networking component is a big part of his site's appeal.

HUNTER MOORE:

I mean, you could post pictures of, you know, random boobs and penises all day [LAUGHS] but just adding that social network to it just puts it to a whole ‘nother level.

BOB GARFIELD:

A whole other level of reality, of lack of anonymity.

HUNTER MOORE:

Exactly.

BOB GARFIELD:

And of shame, right?

HUNTER MOORE:

Exactly, yeah.

BOB GARFIELD:

Tell me about the shame factor. People, obviously, are not thrilled, for the most part, to find out that they’re the stars of your website on any given day. How do they react?

HUNTER MOORE:

We get a ton of removal requests. obviously, but I hardly ever get any from any of the males that are on the site; it's always from the girls. Usually they just  freak out and they do whatever they can to get it off the site.

BOB GARFIELD:

Has anyone ever succeeded in getting their photos taken down?

HUNTER MOORE:

It's up to us if we’re gonna take it down, obviously. But usually we go ahead and take it down, especially because it is kind of revenge and stuff; you have a lot of angry exes or sometimes, you know, somebody that you've had a restraining order against or a stalker got ahold of your pictures or something. We try to get those down immediately.

BOB GARFIELD:

You know, it's not fair to – for me to characterize you as strictly being in the shaming business –

[HUNTER LAUGHS]

- because you're equally in the ridiculing business.

HUNTER MOORE:

Mm-hmm [AFFIRMATIVE].

BOB GARFIELD:

People send you shots and if you don't deem them attractive enough, it's open season, right?

HUNTER MOORE:

Yeah, exactly. I mean, that's what people want to see, and I give it to ‘em.

BOB GARFIELD:

Now, what you're doing isn’t illegal. What's - what is the underlying statute that protects you from legal action?

HUNTER MOORE:

A lot of people call it a loophole but, you know, there’s the Decency Act of, you know, ‘96 that protects me, you know, just from users submitting anonymously.

Even if I do edit it, it still protects me because it was submitted anonymously by another reader or user.

BOB GARFIELD:

That's the Communications Decency Act of ’96, right?

HUNTER MOORE:

Yeah, yeah.

BOB GARFIELD:

Section 230.

HUNTER MOORE:

Yeah. And then also with the copyright issue,  you know, a lot of people are sending me DMCA requests and –

[OVERTALK]

BOB GARFIELD:

They say, I own this photo, you have no right to display it; please take it down.

HUNTER MOORE:

Yes, but when you take a picture of yourself in the mirror, it was intended for somebody else, so actually, the person you sent the picture to actually owns that picture because it was intended as a gift. So whatever the - that person does with the picture, you don’t even own the nude picture of yourself anymore.

But when you go to my site and you fill out the contract, I don't want any of the copyrights or anything. You actually - take full responsibility for any content that's submitted. So that’s how - I’m protected.

BOB GARFIELD:

Yeah. Congratulations on that!

[MOORE LAUGHS]

Now, we've discussed that the people whose photos wind up on your website –

HUNTER MOORE:

Mm-hmm –

BOB GARFIELD:

- are, in varying degrees, shamed, appalled, horrified, shattered.

[MOORE LAUGHS]

So understanding that, why do you hurt people?

HUNTER MOORE:

I actually don't. They hurt themselves. And I'm just making a profit off of it.

BOB GARFIELD:

That's everything but true.

HUNTER MOORE:

No, I mean, I give a stage for people to put that content on the Web. But it’s 2011. I mean, people – they’re putting their lives on Facebook and Twitter and – and then they expect to send these private intimate photos to random people that they’re meeting online that they don't know, and they expect it to not be on the Internet?

BOB GARFIELD:

There – has there been any individual victim who you’ve just felt sorry for to the point that you were moved to take something down and, and, you know, even – oh, I don't know, apologize for the embarrassment that she's undergone, or he?

HUNTER MOORE:

I mean, that’s happened a million times, I’d say. I felt really bad about a lot of things. I, I don't just do the postings, so sometimes stuff goes up and, you know, I’ll see it later on and I’ll feel bad. Or I’ll be reading a removal request and I’ll feel really bad. I've had points where I’ve felt so bad, I’ve wanted to stop the site, [LAUGHS] to be honest with you.

BOB GARFIELD:

And what stopped you from stopping?

HUNTER MOORE:

Um – it’s just too much fun. I get paid money to throw parties, and I get paid money to sit in front of my computer and look at all my peers naked. So, it's pretty awesome.

BOB GARFIELD:

If you got nude photos of your sister or your mom, would you post ‘em?

BOB GARFIELD:

No, of course, not. Why would I post pictures of my sister, or my mom?

BOB GARFIELD:

Well, why wouldn't you?

HUNTER MOORE:

Well – would, would you want to see your mom naked? That doesn’t make any sense. I mean, that’s – why would I post pictures [LAUGHS] of my family naked?

I thank God it’s my site. I mean, I wouldn’t – why would I post pictures of my sister? That’s crazy.

BOB GARFIELD:

Yikes!

HUNTER MOORE:

Yeah.

BOB GARFIELD:

Hunter - we're done.

HUNTER MOORE:

[LAUGHS] All right. Thank you.

BOB GARFIELD:

Thank you for speaking to us.

HUNTER MOORE:

All right, cool. Thanks for having me.

BOB GARFIELD:

Hunter Moore is creator of the website isanyoneup.com.