Monday, September 17, 2012

Compromise Your Own Privacy

Friends across the pond are in an outrage over a gossip rag's publication of Kate Middleton's topless pictures. She was vacationing in a private chateau in the south of France with Prince William when the picture was taken from a distance. The royal family is considering legal action. Read one of the many news articles about it here. A month ago, The Sun posted pictures of Prince Harry in his birthday suit while partying in Vegas. Read their reasoning here. The royal family lawyers said there is no public interest in running those photos.

They sound hypocritical, don't they? Because Harry's partying was done in Vegas and more publicly, it's okay to post pictures of his nudity? The Sun said he "compromised his own privacy." Very true. But isn't that true for Kate as well?

No matter who you are, royal or not, you deserve and should expect the right to privacy. That said, Kate and William know they are in the public eye and that media interest in them is very high. Should they have expected privacy in the home they were staying in? Yes. Should they have expected for that privacy to be invaded? Yes.

Really, you undress on the terrace of any house, it has to be in your mind that someone might see you. You, my friend, have compromised your own privacy. It doesn't matter if you're a royal sunbathing topless or the average Jane sunbathing topless. You're naked. You're outside. You're not dumb. You know there's a chance someone will see you. But you do it anyway. You compromised. You took the risk. The chances of the average Jane's topless pictures being published and republished is significantly lower than that of the royal's. But that's part of being in the limelight. You know that. Yet you compromised and took the risk.

It's still very wrong for the photographer to have taken that picture, and very wrong for the magazines to publish them.

I love that phrase, "compromised your own privacy." How many people compromise their own privacy every time they don't think through their actions?

Just think Facebook. Enough said.

We live in a social media world where anything can go viral. From cat videos to nude pictures. There are laws, especially if there are damages done to the person (jobs/prospect jobs lost, reputation damaged, physical harm, etc), but those laws are not always caught up to our rapidly fast-changing technological world. We, ourselves, have to be vigilant not to compromise our own privacy. But also make sure we're not overstepping someone else's privacy.

But what I do think of, is when all is said and done, it's hurtful to see your private moments plastered everywhere and I hope that Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, will find moments of peace and strength during this time.

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