New Tenn. law against distressing images raises eyebrows
Tennessee’s revised harassment code is likely unconstitutional, according to one prominent legal blogger.
Among other things, the new law makes it a crime to intentionally transmit or display an image that causes an individual emotional distress without a “legitimate purpose.” What constitutes a “legitimate purpose” is not defined in the statutory language.
In his blog, UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh highlighed the law’s application to social-networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
“If you’re posting a picture of someone in an embarrassing situation — not at all limited to, say, sexually themed pictures or illegally taken pictures — you’re likely a criminal unless the prosecutor, judge, or jury concludes that you had a ‘legitimate purpose,’” Volokh said.
The Nashville Scene also commented.
The law is set to take effect July 1.