Following the notorious celebrity nude photo hacking scandal, another massive online leak of 90,000 photos and 9,000 videos have been stolen off the mobile app Snapchat.
There are numerous reports currently flying around on Twitter on whether this is just a “hoax.” Regardless, this is a larger societal issue in social media that needs to be addressed. We need to be having the conversation about digital privacy more openly with our teens. Here’s why:
A recent study from Purdue University found that among 21 year olds, 80 percent had sent or received a sext and 46 percent had sent a nude selfie.
Childhood pornography territory: This is not a regular “celeb” photo hack scandal. We are talking about a massive leak of private photos shared between young adults and teenagers. Snapchat claims 50% of its users are between 13-17 years old. So, if you start sharing these photos, you are basically sharing child pornography.
Snappening Implications: There are long-term implications here for teens who may have been victimized. Any time you take a photo using these apps it could end up in the wrong hands. But how are these young adults going to respond when their nude photos are posted around the Internet? They are not celebrities with high-powered attorneys and managers behind them. They are teenagers in high school who stand to lose everything. I worry about the real implication this will have on their digital reputation for the long run including suicide risk from cyberbullying.
Digital Privacy doesn’t exist: Even if the snappening is a hoax, the notion of digital privacy is the real hoax. It doesn’t exist! What you think its private isn’t, and if you don’t want your reputation tarnished for the long run, re-think what you are sending. And, think about how your parents will react when they see these photos online!
KRIS RUBY is the CEO of Ruby Media Group, an award-winning public relations and media relations agency in Westchester County, New York. Kris Ruby has more than 15 years of experience in the Media industry. She is a sought-after media relations strategist, content creator and public relations consultant. Kris Ruby is also a national television commentator and political pundit and she has appeared on national TV programs over 200 times covering big tech bias, politics and social media. She is a trusted media source and frequent on-air commentator on social media, tech trends and crisis communications and frequently speaks on FOX News and other TV networks. She has been featured as a published author in OBSERVER, ADWEEK, and countless other industry publications. Her research on brand activism and cancel culture is widely distributed and referenced. She graduated from Boston University’s College of Communication with a major in public relations and is a founding member of The Young Entrepreneurs Council. She is also the host of The Kris Ruby Podcast Show, a show focusing on the politics of big tech and the social media industry. Kris is focused on PR for SEO and leveraging content marketing strategies to help clients get the most out of their media coverage.