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FORBIDDEN SHARING

After Facebook tipped police, Denmark charged 1,000 people for sharing a sex tape of 15-year-olds

AP Photo/Jeff Chiu
Risky sharing.
  • Hanna Kozlowska
By Hanna Kozlowska

Investigative reporter

Published This article is more than 2 years old.

Police in Denmark have charged 1,004 young people after they shared on Facebook Messenger a video showing two 15-year-olds having sex. The tip-off came from Facebook itself, which went to the US authorities, who in turn informed Europol.

According to Danish police, sharing the video could constitute distribution of child pornography. (link in Danish). Bloomberg reports that the case comes after calls for a crackdown on revenge porn in the country, inspired by young women publicly talking about how it destroyed their lives.

The ages of the people charged range from 15 to 20+, and about 800 of them are male. Most shared the video just a few times, while others shared it several hundred times. They could face prison time, and a mark on their records that would prevent them from getting jobs in certain fields such as teaching or coaching. 

Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland, a 14-year-old girl who sued Facebook after a man posted a naked photo of her on the platform reached a confidential settlement with the company. The settlement might open the floodgates for similar claims: a libel lawyer based in Belfast revealed that Facebook is facing several lawsuits over revenge porn.

The cases illustrate a nagging problem for the company. Following Russian meddling in the US election and discriminatory advertising, Facebook is fighting calls for the company to take more responsibility for the actions of third parties on its platform. 

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