The State of Texas has just instigated a bill that will make the sending of unsolicited sexual images a misdemeanour, carrying a punishment of a fine of up to $500.
The Texas House Bill 2789 is due to take effect on 1st September 2019 and would outlaw electronically sharing sexually explicit content without the expressed consent of the recipient.
Bumble CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd has been campaigning to make ‘cyberflashing’ a criminal offence, and has worked closely with US legislators and a number of lawyers to set the bill in motion.
She said to Inc.: “Right now, the internet is the Wild Wild West. It’s ridiculous that there is no accountability online for things you are not allowed to do in the real world. We are trying to make a law for indecent exposure, but for the digital realm.”
“We’ve spoken to folks on both the left and the right. This is a human issue, and it’s affecting our youth especially”.
The movement is beginning in Texas, the home of the Bumble headquarters, but Wolfe Herd is already in discussion with federal officials about changing the law nationally.
Bumble users can have parts of their profile taken down, or even banned completely, if they upload images featuring inappropriate themes such as nudity, pornography, violence or drugs.
UK newspaper The Guardian has also previously called for a ban. A report found that 41% of British, millennial women have received unwanted images of male genitalia.
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