House passes bill to ban nude photo sharing in the military

The House has unanimously approved legislation that makes it a crime for U.S. service members to distribute intimate photos or videos of people without first getting their consent. The measure is a direct response to a nude photo sharing scandal that has rocked the Marine Corps. Lawmakers voted 418-0 to pass the bill Wednesday.

The scandal came to light after it was discovered that sexually explicit photos of female and male Marines were being shared on a secret Facebook page. Rep. Martha McSally of Arizona, the bill's sponsor, says the "Neanderthals" who posted the photos aren't emblematic of the vast majority of U.S. troops. But she says the idea that anyone in uniform thinks it's acceptable to upload and comment on nude photos is a problem that must be fixed.

"Our service members should not have to watch their backs among the individuals who are supposed to be their teammates," McSally said in a statement Wednesday after the bill passed the House.

"The military needs to clean this up," she added, praising the House for swift action. It makes it a crime for service members to "knowingly and wrongfully" distribute or broadcast "an intimate visual image" of a person who is identifiable either by the image or comments about the image and "does not explicitly consent" for that image to be shared.

With inputs from AP

Published Date: May 26, 2017 12:55 pm | Updated Date: May 26, 2017 12:55 pm