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No More Nudes: Texas Could Make Sending Unsolicited Nudes a Crime

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Those who send nude photos via social media or text may want to pay attention. Some people don’t ask for them, and if it’s an unsolicited picture, you might want to rethink hitting the send button. In fact, it could soon be a crime in the state of Texas. State Representative Morgan Meyer filed House Bill 2789 which would make it a crime to send lewd pictures to unwilling addressees via online dating apps, text messages, and social media.

Identified as becoming a growing problem in today’s digital communication practices (because, you know, there’s no better way to make use of the infinite creativity and speed of such things, right?) the transmission of such material would become a Class C misdemeanor under the new legislation. This could result in a $500 fine. “Time and time again we hear stories of this sort of harassment, and it’s time for a solution,” Meyer said in his statement on the subject. “Sending a lewd photo to someone that has not requested it or someone you don’t know is no different than exposing yourself to a stranger in public or performing other lewd acts. This is becoming a bigger issue among our teenagers and young adults, and while it seems less egregious since done over text or email, we must establish that this is not acceptable by making it a punishable offense.”

No More Nudes: Texas Could Make Sending Unsolicited Nudes a Crime

Photo: Pixabay

A 2017 poll conducted by YouGov identified that 53 percent of millennial women have received an unwanted sexually explicit photo from a man via a digital platform. This means that women are regularly being exposed to such behavior and have had no recourse up until now.

No More Nudes: Texas Could Make Sending Unsolicited Nudes a Crime

Photo: Pixabay

HB 2789 gives lawmakers the tools to treat the digital transmission of sexually explicit images as a form of indecent exposure. This would be in keeping with the state’s position on unsolicited sexual displays. The bill aims to protect the unwilling recipients of unsolicited sexual photos from such abuses while offering a clear deterrent to those who make this and similar inappropriate conduct a practice. The bill was reported to have been passed by the House, and now moves on to the Texas Senate. Ultimately it will have to cross the Texas Governor’s desk before it can be approved into law. If it passes, HB 2789 is on a timeline for going into effect by September 1, 2019.