Revenge Porn Boss Craig Brittain Asks Google To Take Down Links with "Unauthorized" Information, Has Never Heard of Irony

There is a special laugh that I reserve for the utterly un-self-aware of the world, and right now I am laughing that laugh so loudly you might be able to hear me clear across the country. It seems that revenge porn site owner Craig Brittain has asked Google to remove links to articles about his recent legal troubles on the grounds that they — get this — include unauthorized photos. Are you laughing with me yet? Tell me you're laughing with me.

Until the site was permanently shuttered by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, Craig Brittain ran a notorious revenge porn website called Is Anybody Down. And as you might imagine, it naturally hosted thousands of photos of women shared without their consent. In fact, even the term "revenge porn" might be misleading for Brittain's now-defunct site and the many like it still on the web. While many of the photos were taken and shared by angry ex-lovers, many others were seemingly stolen from private phones or computers by hackers. Though, regardless of how people got ahold of the photos, it is still unquestionably heinous to post compromising photos of women without their permission, including many listing their full names and contact information.

In other words, Craig Brittain is pretty high on the evil scale.

He is also about the last person who has any right to complain about "unauthorized pictures" of himself floating around anywhere.

And yet, because this man apparently lacks any and all capacity for self-awareness, has tried to invoke the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) against a total of 23 links about him. The DMCA requires companies like Google to remove links that infringe on copyright at the copyright holder's request. Fortunately, Brittain doesn't have much of a case here. According to The Washington Post's analysis,

Of the 23 links he names, three are public records posted on government Web sites, and the balance are reported articles from major news sites or blogs. Only four contain a picture of Brittain that he appears to have taken himself; several others use a police booking photo from a 2003 incident.

Obviously, Brittain can't claim copyright over photos taken for official use like police photos, and even the rest are probably protected from the DMCA by fair use and the First Amendment, at least according to Ars Technica.

Brittain made a living for years off of non-consensual photo posts that served no larger purpose other than to let men objectify unwilling women and open those women up to harassment and humiliation. But now apparently he can't deal with the idea that there are fully clothed pictures of him out there, or that there are embarrassing news articles about him.

In fact, he wrote in an open letter this January that, "I strongly believe that the Mainstream Media uses revenge and shame narratives to exploit people and ruin their lives – not unlike what “Revenge Porn” does." Which sound completely bizarre — the job of media outlets is to keep people informed about things the public deems relevant, not to exploit women for cheap thrills — but then again he also talks about how Gamer Gate really was about ethics in games journalism, so I think it's safe to say his understanding of media matters is just warped.

I for one am not going to lose any sleep over the fact that there is "unauthorized" information about Craig Brittain floating around out there. He did a thing that was awful, and he did it for a long time. He hurt hundreds of people. Contrary to what he seems to think, these are relevant things that people have a right to know. What someone looks like naked, on the other hand, not so much.

So have fun with karma, dude. I will just be over here laughing at you for a while longer.

Image: Giphy