Celebrity Photo Leak and Prior Restraints

I n light of the nude photos of celebrities, such as Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton, leaked last month, there is much discussion regarding an individual’s right to privacy. In the photo leak case, legal action can be taken against the original hacker; but what about subsequent uses of these photos? An artist in Florida had plans to display “unaltered and uncensored copies” of the photos. This expression would be permissible under the First Amendment, which prohibits prior restraints (speech or other forms of expression cannot be censored before it has taken place). This effectively lets a subsequent publisher use material that he knew was obtained illegally. The one exception to this rule is for works registered with the copyright office. To read more about the prior restraint’s effects and the Floridian artist’s plans for his display, see the following article from the Hollywood Reporter.

 

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