Support us! Stop Online Shaming has the ANBI status, which allows you to deduct your donation from income tax.
You can also contribute to the crowdfunding campaign ‘Not without my permission’. With this you support the court case of Stichting Online Shaming and Helpwanted.nl against the website Vagina.nl, which exploits nude images without the consent of the people whose images are used.
Stop Online Shaming believes that online privacy breaches and related online unlawful statements should be resolved quickly and effectively. The position of victims must be improved. For instance: unlawful online expressions such as revenge porn, shame sexting, cyberbullying, hate or hurtful content directed at individual victims and related identity theft and fake expressions such as deep fake and deepnudes.
Online shaming can have major consequences. Such as: laughter and harassment, damage to reputation, problems in the private sphere, social isolation, loss of work, fears and depression. In extreme cases it has even led to suicide. An additional problem is that the victims themselves are often blamed for what happened to them (also known as victim blaming).
Police and justice often do nothing, or too little, or they do not act quickly enough. While rapid action is essential to prevent the material from spreading like an oil slick online. Stop Online Shaming is all about picking up reports faster, and making sure that embarrassing content is immediately taken offline. Among other things by lobbying for better legislation and regulation. But there are more possibilities.
Victims often do not know that civil justice can provide a rapid solution. But the thresholds are high. Those who cannot find a specialist lawyer and have no financial resources are left empty-handed. Stop Online Shaming stands up for these victims and helps them to get justice by legal means.
Stop Online Shaming conducts strategic lawsuits, such as collective actions and test cases, against online privacy breaches and related online unlawful statements. Stop Online Shaming stands up for those affected, even if their identity is not known. The aim is to create case law that strengthens the position of victims.
The mission of Stop Online Shaming is to remove barriers for victims within procedures of self-regulation, civil law and criminal law.
The purpose of Stop Online Shaming is to initiate (legal) proceedings to:
- take offline privacy breaches and unlawful statements made online soon as possible;
- prevent such content from being offered online again;
- ensure that perpetrators cannot hide behind false names or anonymity.
The court has banned the website ZwarteLijstArtsen.nl. The website, which has been a digital pillory for doctors for a decade, must be offline within two days. “An enormous relief for many hundreds of doctors,” said Willem van Lynden, board member of the Stop Online Shaming (‘SOS’) Foundation, which initiated the lawsuit.
The private website lists almost 900 doctors and healthcare providers, many with photos, who are portrayed as committing ‘medical crimes’ and as ‘failing healthcare providers’. The court ruled that the accusations against the doctors are very serious and often have no factual basis. The term ‘blacklisted doctors’ wrongly suggests that the doctors listed should be avoided.
For the full press release: click here.
In the proceedings against the website vagina.nl, the Court of Amsterdam rendered an interim judgment on 18 November 2020. In this interim judgment, the Court made suggestions for the way in which persons who (have been) visible against their will on the website vagina.nl can be approached by means of an advertisement, so that – who so wishes – can contact the Court. The next step in the proceedings is that the plaintiffs respond to these suggestions, and then the defendant. After that, the Court will render an interim decision on the matter. Subsequently, the defendant will have to respond substantively to the claims of Stop Online Shaming and EOKM.
In the daily newsreel of Dutch TV channel RTL4 of 25 November 2020, attention was paid to the rise of ‘Deep Nudes’ (computer-generated fake nudes). Spokesman Willem van Lynden of the Stop Online Shaming Foundation warned about the harmful consequences: “Anyone can be a victim. It is no longer even necessary to be filmed or photographed naked anywhere”.
Watch the news item on our Youtube channel (in Dutch): click here.
In the proceedings against the website vagina.nl of Evolve Media, the Court of Amsterdam rendered an interim judgment on 28 October 2020. In a collective action, additional requirements are imposed on the plaintiffs, even if the claims have an idealistic purpose. Stichting Stop Online Shaming and Stichting EOKM are admissible.
On 1 April 2020, the Court handed down an interlocutory judgment, after which the proceedings were prosecuted. No other interest groups have joined this court case. In July 2020, Evolve Media sent a written procedural document to the Court on the admissibility of the two plaintiffs, who replied in writing in August 2020. In collective cases, it is customary for the Court to assess the admissibility first. Subsequently, the substance of the claims made by the plaintiffs will be debated.
The writ of summons against Evolve Media (vagina.nl) was registered in the Central Register of Collective Actions on 27 February 2020. The proceedings have been brought before the District Court of Amsterdam, which will decide on the subsequent procedural steps on 27 May 2020.
The Stop Online Shaming Foundation, together with Helpwanted.nl, starts a lawsuit against the website Vagina.nl, which exploits nude images without the consent of the people in the image. Especially when using hidden cameras, people don’t even know they have been filmed. With this lawsuit plaintiffs want to make it clear that it is not allowed to put nude images on the internet without permission of everyone who is in the picture.
- press release (pdf)
- writ of summons (pdf)
- radio interview (NOS Radio 1 News, Feb. 26, 2020, 5 min.)
- news item tv (NOS Journaal and News Hour, Feb. 26, 2020, 1.5 min.)
- video interview (AD De Morning Show, 11 Mar. 2020, 4.5 min.)
- radio interview (NPO Radio 1 Een Vandaag, 7 Jul. 2020, 5.5 min.)
Support us through our crowdfunding campaign.
For media enquiries: Willem van Lynden 06-26788038
The board of Stop Online Shaming consists of three people:
- Henk Boeke – chairman
Henk is the founder and former director of Parents Online. He is currently active for the Platform for the Protection of Civil Rights and – among other activities – working as a consultant for Kennisnet. His last term for the Advisory Committee of Nicam/Kijkwijzer just ended.
- Willem van Lynden – secretary/treasurer
Willem is the founder of Mediamaze, an organisation that advises on online reputation management and offers support in applying the right of forgetting.
- Anna Sträter – legal member of the board
Anna is attorney-at-law at Bureau Brandeis, and active in the fields of media, gambling en telecommunications. She is experienced in privacy law, especially the Right to erasure (‘right to be forgotten’) – Art. 17 GDPR.
The board members receive no remuneration for their work.
Stop Online Shaming was founded in October 2019. The statutory name is ‘Stichting Stop Online Shaming’. The foundation is not for profit. The statutory objective is as follows: “The objective of the foundation is to promote the interests of victims of online privacy infringements and online unlawful communications, in particular by enforcing, promoting and obtaining adequate legal protection of the rights and interests of those victims, all in the broadest sense of the word.”
Boekx Advocaten is the legal partner of Stop Online Shaming. Boekx Advocaten has pro bono facilitated the incorporation Stop Online Shaming.
The Boomerang Agency contributed free of charge to the creation of the Stop Online Shaming logo and visuals.
The Stop Online Shaming Foundation was incorporated pro bono by civil-law notary Jan Schouten of Fieldfisher.
For advice on online sexual abuse, please contact Helpwanted.nl.
The Stop Online Shaming website does not collect personal data.
The only personal data that will be processed are the personal data you provide when making a financial contribution to Stop Online Shaming. These personal details will not be used for other purposes. In the case of donations, the personal data necessary to transfer the amount will be processed by your bank and by the bank of Stop Online Shaming.