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  1. #1
    OSI
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    Exclamation Is it legal to video someone without their knowledge?

    What is the name of your state? Oregon

    This is my first time in the forum and I have no clue where this question should be posted. Anyway, here is my situation:

    I dated this guy for a few month (like 9 months ago), then we broke up on bad terms. Now I come to find out he's been showing people (guys) videos and pictures of me/us from while we were together. I had NO idea he was ever videotaping anything. He must have hidden a camera somewhere without me knowing. Now he is using it as bribery against me. Telling me he'll show so-and-so if I don't do specific things.
    Is this legal??

    Please Help!!
  2. #2
    BelizeBreeze is offline Senior Member
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    First answer one question. Did these tappings occur at your residence or his?
  3. #3
    OSI
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    Quote Originally Posted by BelizeBreeze
    First answer one question. Did these tappings occur at your residence or his?
    His house, as far as I know. I haven't seen the videos/pics though. So hard to tell.
  4. #4
    BelizeBreeze is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by OSI
    His house, as far as I know. I haven't seen the videos/pics though. So hard to tell.
    If the tapping occurred at his home, and even though Oregon has no 'expectation of privacy' requirement in the statute, Oregon law makes an exception to such prohibitions found otherwise in the statute:
    A person may obtain a telecommunication or radio communication without consent, or a conversation without informing the participants, in his own home.
  5. #5
    You Are Guilty is offline Senior Member
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    I'd have to see the tape myself before I could comment
    Quote Originally Posted by Tranquility
    Once you get to crazy land, it is only a guess on how to get out.
  6. #6
    OSI
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    Quote Originally Posted by BelizeBreeze
    If the tapping occurred at his home, and even though Oregon has no 'expectation of privacy' requirement in the statute, Oregon law makes an exception to such prohibitions found otherwise in the statute:
    A person may obtain a telecommunication or radio communication without consent, or a conversation without informing the participants, in his own home.
    Ok...so it's legal for him to make a video without my consent?

    What about making it public though? You know how on television, peoples faces get all blurred out if the publication doesn't have their consent. Wouldn't this be the same type of thing?
  7. #7
    BelizeBreeze is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by OSI
    Ok...so it's legal for him to make a video without my consent?

    What about making it public though? You know how on television, peoples faces get all blurred out if the publication doesn't have their consent. Wouldn't this be the same type of thing?
    It is not illegal to videotape in his own residence. He owns the videotape. Now you tell me, is it illegal for him to use his own property as he sees fit?

    You will go broke trying to stop him from showing it and end up losing. My only advice to you is next time you get horny, do it in your OWN residence.
  8. #8
    divgradcurl is offline Senior Member
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    It is not illegal to videotape in his own residence. He owns the videotape. Now you tell me, is it illegal for him to use his own property as he sees fit?
    BB, are you sure about that? The excerpt from the statute you posted above only deals with audio, not video:

    "A person may obtain a telecommunication or radio communication without consent, or a conversation without informing the participants, in his own home. "

    Unless the videotape only captured the "conversation" -- in which case it wouldn't be all that interesting anyway -- it wouldn't fall under this exception. A quick look through the Oregon statutes didn't show any exception to the "expectation of privacy" with respect to videotapes or photographs taken without knowledge or consent, even in one's own home.
  9. #9
    OSI
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    Quote Originally Posted by divgradcurl
    BB, are you sure about that? The excerpt from the statute you posted above only deals with audio, not video:

    "A person may obtain a telecommunication or radio communication without consent, or a conversation without informing the participants, in his own home. "

    Unless the videotape only captured the "conversation" -- in which case it wouldn't be all that interesting anyway -- it wouldn't fall under this exception. A quick look through the Oregon statutes didn't show any exception to the "expectation of privacy" with respect to videotapes or photographs taken without knowledge or consent, even in one's own home.
    Ok...so divgradcurl, you think that it is illegal? Your explaination seems to make more sense to me. However, I know nothing about the law and all the fine print.
  10. #10
    divgradcurl is offline Senior Member
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    Ok...so divgradcurl, you think that it is illegal?
    Well, I think that the statutory excerpt that BB provided doesn't provide an exception to the general "expectation of privacy" for videotape. As I noted previously, a quick look through the Oregon statutes did not seem to imply that a similar exception existed for videotape. You would need to talk with someone with experience in the laws of Oregon to know for sure. However, just from general principles, it is probably not lawful.

    Try an talk to a local lawyer to get an accurate picture of your rights and the legality or illegality of the videotape -- that will be the very best information you can get.
  11. #11
    BelizeBreeze is offline Senior Member
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    Yes, I am very sure of my answer. There are no statutory limitations regarding videotape in Oregon. IF the video also has accompanying sound, then it would completely fall under the statute I quoted.

    If no sound, then there is no statutory prohibition.

    Remember the college girl about three weeks ago and the discussion of the photos?
  12. #12
    divgradcurl is offline Senior Member
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    Yes, I am very sure of my answer. There are no statutory limitations regarding videotape in Oregon. IF the video also has accompanying sound, then it would completely fall under the statute I quoted.
    Oregon Revised Statutes 163.700:

    "(1) Except as provided in ORS 163.702, a person commits the crime of invasion of personal privacy if:
    (a)(A) The person knowingly makes or records a photograph, motion picture, videotape or other visual recording of another person in a state of nudity without the consent of the person being recorded; and
    (B) At the time the visual recording is made or recorded the person being recorded is in a place and circumstances where the person has a reasonable expectation of personal privacy; or
    (b)(A) For the purpose of arousing or gratifying the sexual desire of the person, the person is in a location to observe another person in a state of nudity without the consent of the other person; and
    (B) The other person is in a place and circumstances where the person has a reasonable expectation of personal privacy."

    Videotaping is NOT the same as recording a conversation...

    Excpetions to this law are given in ORS 163.702:

    "The provisions of ORS 163.700 do not apply to:

    (1) Any legitimate medical procedure performed by or under the direction of a person licensed to provide medical service for the purpose of medical diagnosis, treatment, education or research, including, but not limited to, the recording of medical procedures; and

    (2) Any activity undertaken in the course of bona fide law enforcement or corrections activity or necessary to the proper functioning of the criminal justice system, including but not limited to the operation and management of jails, prisons and other youth and adult corrections facilities."

    I still think my advice to the OP to seek an Oregon lawyer in this case is sound. Further, since this is a criminal statute, she could also contact the police.

    EDIT: This criminal statute is for nudity and the like -- whether the videotaping of nonsexual stuff would fall under BB's statute is something I didn't look up...
  13. #13
    BelizeBreeze is offline Senior Member
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    And the problem with citing that particular statute is that a person, outside of their own home, has no expectation of privacy.

    I would suggest that a thorough reading of State v. Stevenson, 236 Wis.2d 86, 236 Wis.2d 86, 613 N.W.2d 90, 613 N.W.2d 90, 2000 WI 71 (Wis. 06/28/2000) be initiated for background on similar statutes and the results.

    10. Statutes generally benefit from a presumption of constitutionality that the challenger must refute. County of Kenosha v. C&S Management, Inc., 223 Wis. 2d 373, 383, 588 N.W.2d 236 (1999). When the statute implicates the exercise of First Amendment rights, however, the burden shifts to the government to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the statute passes constitutional muster. Lounge Management v. Town of Trenton, 219 Wis. 2d 13, 20, 580 N.W.2d 156 (1998); City of Madison v. Baumann, 162 Wis. 2d 660, 668, 470 N.W.2d 296 (1991). Because Wis. Stat. 944.205(2)(a) implicates First Amendment rights, the State assumes the burden of proving that the statute is constitutional beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The statue on its face is flawed and overbroad and cannot withstand judicial review.
  14. #14
    divgradcurl is offline Senior Member
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    And the problem with citing that particular statute is that a person, outside of their own home, has no expectation of privacy.
    Please. That's not even close to being correct. Even the statute I quoted above includes "(c) "Places and circumstances where the person has a reasonable expectation of personal privacy" includes, but is not limited to, a bathroom, dressing room, locker room that includes an area for dressing or showering, tanning booth and any area where a person undresses in an enclosed space that is not open to public view." That is certainly more expansive than "ones own home."

    Here's a bit on "expectation of privacy" culled from another legal site:

    "How does one establish whether, in a given instance, one's expectation of privacy is "reasonable"? The criteria are as follows: 1) general legal principles; 2) the vantage point from which the surveillance is carried out; 3) the degree of privacy afforded by certain buildings and/or places; and 4) the sophistication and invasiveness of the surveillance technology employed.

    1. General legal principles. The expectation of privacy is not reasonable if the behaviors or communications in question were knowingly exposed to public view. Neither the simple desire for privacy, nor the fact that one took steps to obtain it, entitles one to reasonably expect it. For example, even if one set up roadblocks, hung "no trespassing" signs and moved one's house back into the woods, one might still be surveilled from the air without one's Fourth Amendment rights being violated. And yet, as the court stated in People v. Camacho (2000) 23 Cal.4 th 824, 835, "we cannot accept the proposition that [the] defendant forfeited the expectation his property would remain private simply because he did not erect an impregnable barrier to access."

    2. Vantage point. The expectation of privacy is not reasonable if there exists a vantage point from which anyone, not just a police officer, can see or hear what was going on and if this vantage point is or should be known or "reasonably foreseen" by the person being surveilled. If such a vantage point exists in theory, the police can actually use another vantage point from which to conduct their surveillance, because what matters is the expectation of privacy, which becomes "unreasonable" if any vantage point exists (!). But the police cannot use a vantage point if they have no legal right to take or occupy it. The police cannot commit trespassing; they haven't if they have taken up a vantage point along a normal access route, an "open field," or a common area.

    3. Certain buildings and/or pieces of land. The expectation of privacy is not reasonable at such public places as automobile thoroughfares (United States v. Knotts [1983] 460 US 276, 281), and national forests (United States v. McIver [9 th Cir. 1999] 186 F.3d 1119, 1125, but is reasonable at public phone booths (Katz v. the United States, 389 U.S. 347 [1967]), rock concerts (Jacobsen v. Seattle, 658 P. 2d 653 [Wash. 1983]), and sports arenas (Collier v. Miller, 414 F. Supp. 1357 [S.D. Tex. 1976])."

    Further, in Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91 (1990), the court held that "Olson's status as an overnight guest is alone sufficient to show that he had an expectation of privacy in the home that society is prepared to recognize as reasonable. See Rakas v. Illinois, 439 U.S. 128, 143 -144; cf. Jones v. United States, 362 U.S. 257 . The distinctions relied on by the State between this case and Jones - that, there, the overnight guest was left alone and had a key to the premises with which he could come and go and admit and exclude others - are not legally determinative. All citizens share the expectation that hosts will more likely than not respect their guests' privacy interests even if the guests have no legal interest in the premises and do not have the legal authority to determine who may enter the household."

    The statue on its face is flawed and overbroad and cannot withstand judicial review.
    I think that the Supreme Court case above might disagree with your pronouncement...
  15. #15
    BelizeBreeze is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by divgradcurl
    I think that the Supreme Court case above might disagree with your pronouncement...
    And I think the Supreme Court case I cited (10 years later regarding the addition of the language) might disagree with YOUR pronouncement

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