Woman goes to court over video of her exposing her breasts 12 years ago
A woman who exposed her breasts when a teenager claims damages 12 years later
Lindsey Boyd was 14 and walking along the beachfront in Panama City, Florida, when two men, one holding a video camera, asked her to expose her breasts.
She complied and was compensated, as were many who flashed their breasts during spring break in 2000, with a cheap beaded necklace.
A video of Boyd, from Powder Springs, Georgia, was sold for the Girls Gone Wild, College Girls Exposed series. Not only would a 5-second clip of the schoolgirl exposing herself be on the video, a photo of her baring her breasts would be on the cover of the DVD and displayed in commercials in a national advertising campaign.
Yesterday a case opened in the Georgia Supreme Court to hear arguments on whether the former teenager, who is now 26-year-old Lindsey Bullard of Cartersville, Georgia, can sue the production companies that bought the video of her and put it in the "Girls Gone Wild" soft-porn video.
Bullard is seeking unspecified damages from the companies, saying they misappropriated her image for commercial purposes.
Gerry Weber, a lawyer from Atlanta, Georgia and an expert on free speech law, said: "The expectation of privacy has changed significantly in the digital age. Everybody's got a camera phone, and people are photographing and videotaping each other in public places all the time."
A key issue in the case, Weber said, is whether a minor has the legal capacity to consent to being photographed.
What happened in 2000, Bullard said last week, was a poor decision made in the moment by a teenager who had no clue what could happen next.
"What they did to me, using my image as advertisement, was wrong," she said. "They did not have my consent. It was exploitation. If I had known that the whole world was going to see it I definitely would have thought more about it and would not have done it. There should be laws against it to protect others from this."
Bullard said that by the time she got to high school, fellow students, teachers and coaches had seen her photo in the "Girls Gone Wild" advertising campaign.
"It didn't make it easy going to school. It was pretty rough, in fact," said Bullard, a hairstylist who is married with a baby daughter. "I was pinpointed as a bad girl, as the problem girl."