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Tumblr Has a Massive Creepshots Problem (vice.com) 122

After Reddit famously banned the creepshots sub-reddit, which shared non-consensual, revealing photos of women, Tumblr now has a slew of users pushing out similar photos across at least dozens of dedicated blogs, a Motherboard investigation has found. From the report: Simply typing 'creepshot' or related terms into Tumblr's built-in search function returns a steady stream of tagged posts, and Google queries easily reveal links to relevant Tumblr blogs. Motherboard found just under 70 Tumblr blogs focused on sharing creepshots, most with a bevy of content. In some cases, the Tumblrs also host 'upskirt' photos or videos, where a camera is deliberately, and stealthily, positioned to look up an unsuspecting person's skirt. Some of the subjects of these images, as well as many of the clothed creepshots, appear to be young, possibly teenagers.

"This is only the tip of the iceberg, there are probably hundreds of these accounts filming in high schools, college campuses, in malls, and on the streets. And Tumblr seems to not care at all about the problem," an anonymous tipster, who first alerted Motherboard to the issue, wrote in an email. One of the most popular creepshot Tumblrs has some 11,000 followers, and one of its posts has over 53,000 interactions linked to it, including reblogs, where the video or picture then appears on the user's own Tumblr, spreading the content further.

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Tumblr Has a Massive Creepshots Problem

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    if it's not one thing it's another.

    Get on board and start cracking down on your users and tell them how to behave!

    We have to get rid of all the russian nazis before they influence any more elections

  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @01:34PM (#56270597)

    If a group of users who like posting pictures like this just move from one site to another like locusts, it's not really a problem with wherever they land - it's a social and people problem.

    What can you do about it? Nothing at all, that's what. They will just go somewhere else even if you somehow managed to block them from whatever site they are on now.

    • The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it. [wikiquote.org]

      - John Gilmore, 1993.

      Much wisdom from the key developers of the early Internet has been lost or ignored, to our detriment.

    • It's not a tech problem, but it is a character problem. The reddit folks didn't ban this because they cared about the victims. They did it because of public pressure.

      Tumblr (and previously reddit) could have taken a stand that the victims' rights outweighed the posters' rights and gained some respect. Could have.

      Of course it doesn't make it go away. But it could remove one "legitimate" (ok, it's Tumblr) source of implied approval.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        It's not a tech problem, but it is a character problem. The reddit folks didn't ban this because they cared about the victims. They did it because of public pressure.

        Tumblr (and previously reddit) could have taken a stand that the victims' rights outweighed the posters' rights and gained some respect. Could have.

        Of course it doesn't make it go away. But it could remove one "legitimate" (ok, it's Tumblr) source of implied approval.

        If you set the precedent that a forum operator is responsible for all user content, you may not like the result.

        I am old enough to remember the 1990s, a time when the existence of transgendered people was not a topic one could discuss in front of children. If the internet had existed in its current form, Reddit and Tumblr would have faced significant pressure to disallow forums that discussed the existence of transgendered people. Should they have caved to that pressure? I would say "no", because I don't

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Kjella ( 173770 )

      What can you do about it? Nothing at all, that's what. They will just go somewhere else even if you somehow managed to block them from whatever site they are on now.

      You're assuming that the point of these smear campaigns is to make people stop taking and sharing creepshots. It's about trying to discredit and kill sites that allow user-supplied content, or if not that then to give corporations and special interest organizations free reign to install automated content scanners, issue take downs and block whatever it is they don't like. Or just spinning up rumors to smear competing services even though your photo sharing service has many creepshots of its own, because mos

      • These Creep-Shot people are just being used as tools to try and kill off free and open expression. It's impossible to say which of these are jerks, and which are false flag operations trying to present the problem as worse than it really is.

        I don't like creep shots but I hate censorship far more.

        • Re:BINGO (Score:4, Interesting)

          by deong ( 88798 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @02:45PM (#56271089) Homepage

          So you don't like "censorship".

          Great. Here's what actually happened. Third parties did some basic research and found the existence of this material on Tumblr's site. Other people then pressure Tumblr to remove that content. Tumblr will presumably then remove this content. If you find this series of events objectionable, what's your preferred alternative? Should Tumblr be compelled by law to host them? Should third parties be prevented from pointing them out? Are you just saying you'd prefer Tumblr ignore them?

          I have a hard time seeing any censorship here. This appears to be a bunch of people using their freedom to speak their mind, and (presumably) a company agreeing with them. It's not really censorship for me to paint over your graffiti on my wall. It's my wall. I get to decide what I want it to say. You can go paint your own wall. You may wish Tumblr would do otherwise, but it's their wall. They aren't obligated, legally or ethically, to display anything they don't want on that wall.

          • Tumblr will presumably then remove this content.

            Presumably? It's Tumblr. 10% chance it's gone, 15% chance it's highlighted.

            If you find this series of events objectionable, what's your preferred alternative? Should Tumblr be compelled by law to host them?

            Yep, if you are going to run an image hosting site, cannot discriminate based on content, only illegal materials get removed. If someone wants to say creepy images are illegal, fine, but they have to codify what that MEANS.

            They aren't obligated, legally or

      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        No, the story here is that as one site forces them out it just relocates the problem somewhere else. Same as in real life.

        Companies apparently need to be on the lookout for migrating swarms of arseholes looking to turn their site into something creepy or illegal. None of them are motivated to do more than move them on.

    • Indeed. Let's just abandon all social etiquette and ask laws. Since there's nothing we can do about human behavior anyway
  • Gotta say it. (Score:2, Redundant)

    by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 )

    Pics or it didn't happen.

    [ What? Don't look at me like that; you were thinking it too. :-) ]

  • by Anonymous Coward

    For those of us who are not in fact creeps and don't necessarily want first-hand exposure to it, what _is_ a "creepshot" and why is it assumed that all readers of this site already know the term?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      For those of us who are not in fact creeps and don't necessarily want first-hand exposure to it, what _is_ a "creepshot" and why is it assumed that all readers of this site already know the term?

      Literally the first line of the summary should make that clear? "[...] non-consensual, revealing photos of women"

    • Pics of girls in yoga pants mixed with obviously porn posed-for upskirts.
  • by nightfire-unique ( 253895 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @02:07PM (#56270797)
    ... we'll probably be okay.
  • They also have an absolutely loonie far leftist nut job problem but they aren't doing anything about that either because that's who runs the company.
  • The upskirt images are not appropriate or legal, but it is legal to take images of people in public settings, isn't it?

    We have no reasonable expectation of privacy in public, as the US government and the media industry has made quite clear.

    Also, while it is amazing what some of these woman are wearing in public, presumably they were aware of their appearance when they left the house?

  • Maybe if people stop expecting that they have a right to privacy when out in public they can stop getting angry when someone sees them. Seriously google creepshot. If the resulting photo of normally fully dressed women viewed from public and obvious places annoys you then maybe you are part of the problem. If finding a picture of yourself pointing your g-string in the direction of a camera through skin tight leggings which are about 4 sizes too small disturbs you, maybe you shouldn't dress that way in publi

  • tl;dr: the creeps and the girls flaunting their sexuality are both assholes and idiots.

    Wear revealing clothes and do your absolute best to flaunt your sexuality in public?
    People ("creeps") will take notice. Why are you mad? Attention is exactly what you wanted isn't it?
    Oh, wait, I know why you're mad. It's because you feel humiliated when people just take pictures of what you're flaunting.
    Well you can't have your cake and eat it too, princess. Wear a whore's uniform and try to get extra attention from
    • Wear revealing clothes and do your absolute best to flaunt your sexuality in public?

      If someone has to take a picture secretly, and that picture is not being taken for the express and specific purpose of uncovering some misdeed, then that's a sign that they are doing something wrong. The standard has always been that you don't look up people's skirts. If you're talking about pictures of people in public which are taken without deception or disguise, then I'm actually with you (although not quite so frothy about it) but if you're talking about upskirts and the like, you're off your nut.

  • by smooth wombat ( 796938 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @04:28PM (#56271789) Journal
    And Tumblr seems to not care at all about the problem,

    It's the same with their rape videos, or videos showing torture. And no, I don't mean the simulated ones. I mean women who are unconscious being raped, one on a kitchen counter fighting off her attacker, and so on.

    That's the real reason Tumblr forced people to get an account. They think they're hiding these photos/videos but as this story shows, it's really just a shell game.
  • by OrangeTide ( 124937 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @05:07PM (#56272013) Homepage Journal

    You're like the parking lot behind the Dollar General where all the degenerates hang out.

Nothing succeeds like the appearance of success. -- Christopher Lascl

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