The real charge here? Body-shaming.
by Molly Thomson
It seems like we share everything on social media these days—but when that medium is used for bullying, body-shaming, or illegal photography, there should undoubtedly be consequences.
Thankfully, there are some for Playboy playmate Dani Mathers. In July, Mathers posted a photograph of a naked 70-year-old woman at L.A. Fitness to her Snapchat story without her consent, which is illegal, snarky, and downright cruel. As if that wasn’t enough, she captioned the photo, “If I can’t unsee this then you can’t either.”
Unsurprisingly, she faced an enormous amount of backlash for her thoughtless bullying of an unsuspecting woman. LAPD launched an investigation after the story was publicized, and police found the photographed woman and asked her if she wanted to press charges for voyeurism (she absolutely did.)
In light of the backlash, Mathers said: “I understand fully the magnitude of this post that I have hurt a lot of people, women. Body shaming is not okay.” But her apology didn’t do much to assuage the public’s outrage.
Fast-forward to today, and Los Angeles City Attorney has charged Mathers with invasion of privacy, which could lead to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine in addition to her soiled reputation. She has been banned from L.A. Fitness and she lost her job at 95.5 KLOS FM. In other words, her Snapchat lasted a little longer than its allotted ten seconds.
Mathers’ excuse? She posted an apology video saying she was “new to Snapchat” and thought the picture was posted privately.
That’s not exactly the problem, though. As L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer said in a statement: “While body-shaming, in itself, is not a crime, there are circumstances in which invading one’s privacy to accomplish it can be. And we shouldn’t tolerate that.”
We hope that she learns from her mistakes. Posting a picture of a naked person without his or her consent? Totally illegal. But body-shaming and bullying? Never ever okay.
Dani took to Twitter to salvage her image after the incident.