Teen Sues Her Parents For Posting Embarrassing Childhood Photos On Facebook

by Jerriann Sullivan
Image via Shutterstock

Woman sues her parents after they share 500 embarrassing photos online

Picture it; you’re scrolling through Facebook and see one of those awkward family photos parents love posting. Then you realize the naked butt on the outdated duvet is yours. Mom and dad have officially mortified you on the internet – where nothing ever dies. One 18-year-old woman was so sick of her parents posting embarrassing childhood memories online that she sued them.

We’ve all been in a similar situation. If it wasn’t our parents, our alleged best friend shared those horrific images from our spray tanning phase. So you’re probably thinking, “so what. They’re just pictures. Plus, her parents put up with a lot of crap raising her so why can’t they post some photos online?” Well, that’s what a judge will decide when the case goes to trial in November.

The family feud started back in 2009 when the mom and dad of an unnamed Austrian woman made the bold decision to share 500 images of their beloved daughter on Facebook without her consent. She claims that their actions have caused her massive misery. “They knew no shame and no limit – and didn’t care whether it was a picture of me sitting on the toilet or lying naked in my cot – every stage was photographed and then made public,” the 18-year-old shared with The Local, an Austrian media outlet.

While we’re all for moms and dads snapping and sharing away, there has to be a limit. Personally, I never understood the fascination with taking naked baby pictures. Parents obviously love them, but is it really necessary to share those online? Can’t you just keep them for when your son or daughter brings home their potential marriage partner? Embarrassing our kids is most definitely a parental right, but shaming them in a very public way that can’t be easily undone crosses a line. Especially since our work life now involves a full social media background check before every job interview.

Their daughter apparently asked for the photos to be deleted from Facebook many times but hasn’t successfully convinced mom and dad, which prompted the lawsuit. “I’m tired of not being taken seriously by my parents,” she explained. Good luck with that one, lady. I’m 32, and my mom still calls me every few days to make sure I’ve survived the grueling battles of adult life. They can’t help but think of us as their little babies.

Either way, the case will be an interesting one to watch. The young girl’s dad feels very strongly that he’s got the right to publish the pics since he took them. But her lawyer, Michael Rami, thinks he’ll win the whole thing if it can be proven that her rights to a personal life were violated. While this is the first case of its kind in Austria, it’s a relatively common one abroad. Europeans don’t take kindly to photos of themselves being published without their consent. France’s taken the strongest stance with one year in prison and a fine up to $50,584 for people convicted of distributing images of others without their permission.

It’s hard to imagine a case like this happening in America. What celebrity doesn’t share an overwhelming amount of baby pics on social media? Since we don’t know how harmful it is to post that many personal details of our kids online it wouldn’t hurt if we all took it down a notch. If the Austrian parents lose, not only will they have to remove all the photos but they’ll have to pay their daughter’s legal fees and likely some additional compensation for her pain and suffering.