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3 April 2020 | Podcasts | Article by Alan Collins

HJ Talks About Abuse: Sharing Online Images


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In this podcast Alan Collins and Dr Michael Salter, Associate Professor of Criminology at The University of New South Wales, discuss the risks associated with posting supposedly private images online.

Alan asks the question whether posting private and intimate images is now seen as acceptable behaviour? Dr Salter in answering this question highlights research in this area and how paedophiles are able to exploit this behaviour by gaining access to children. Alan highlights that IICSA as part of its research, revealed that children and young people come under pressure to share images. The research also shows however, that they have considerable insight and that there is much to learn from their insights.

Before the invention of the smartphone, child abuse images were created by adults and Alan recalls a case that he worked on called ‘Green Field House’ where in the 1960’s, boys from this institution appeared in pornographic photographs and films which were clandestinely commercially produced. So in one sense this is not a new problem but now a radically developing and different one. Children and young people engaging in the sharing of images maybe doing so innocently, maybe naively and consensually. What is of further concern is that there maybe coercion. The research points to pressure to conform and engage, and that can become coercive. All of this has considerable ramifications because it can lead to both physical and psychological harm for the young people concerned.

All of our episodes are also available to listen to on our website here. To find out more about what Alan and Sam do, visit the abuse page.

We encourage anyone who has concerns about sexual abuse to get in touch. You can contact Alan Collins at [email protected] or Danielle Vincent at  [email protected].

Author bio

Alan Collins is one of the best known and most experienced solicitors in the field of child abuse litigation and has acted in many high profile cases, including the Jimmy Savile and Haut de la Garenne abuse scandals.  Alan has represented interested parties before public inquiries including the Independent Jersey Care Inquiry, and IICSA (Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse).

Internationally, Alan works in Australia, South East Asia, Uganda, Kenya, and California representing clients in high profile sexual abuse cases. Alan also spoke at the Third Regional Workshop on Justice for Children in East Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok hosted by Unicef and HCCH (Hague Conference on Private International Law).

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.

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