Parents in France are being warned against posting pictures of their kids online in case their own kids decide that their privacy has been breached and sue them for it. Under France’s strict privacy laws, parents could face penalties as severe as a year in prison and a fine of $50,000 if convicted of publicizing intimate details of the private lives of others – including their children – without their consent.
Eric Delcroix, an expert on internet law and ethics, said, “In a few years, children could easily take their parents to court for publishing photos of them when they were younger.”
According to French legal experts, grown-ups who sue their parents for breaking their rights to privacy could receive substantial compensation.
The French police are worried about the danger of pedophiles targeting children after seeing photos of them online, and some parents have been forced to remove naked photos of their babies and young children in fear of attracting online predators.
Jay Parikh, a vice-president of Facebook, said that the service was considering setting up a system that would notify parents if they were breaching their children’s privacy and make it easier not to post pictures that everyone can see.
Parikh explains, “If I was putting online a photo of my kids playing in the park, and I accidentally shared it with everyone, the system could say: ‘Hey, wait a minute, this a picture of your children. Usually you only send them to members of your family. Are you sure you want to do this?'”