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Government & Politics

New Bill Would Ban Revenge Porn

A photo of Sen. Joe Schiavoni speaking with members of BADASS Army, survivors of image abuse.
KAREN KASLER
/
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

National stats show 1 in 25 people is threatened or harassed by the sharing of explicit images of themselves online without their consent or knowledge. And right now, it’s not illegal in Ohio to do that. But  there’s a new bill that hopes to ban so-called “revenge porn”.

Last year, Youngstown mother Katelyn Bowden found out nude pictures of her were online when an acquaintance confessed to posting them after stealing her ex-boyfriend’s phone. Bowden founded an online group of survivors working against revenge porn and image abuse.

“I was told that, to the state of Ohio, a cell phone had more rights than me, a human being. I was hurt, I was depressed, I felt ashamed for taking photos within the confines of a trusting relationship.”

The bill from Democratic Sen. Joe Schiavoni of the Youngstown area would make sharing nude pictures without the subject’s consent a first degree misdemeanor. 38 states already ban non-consensual sharing of explicit images, but victims say it’s hard to get pictures removed once they’re online.