Tips on how to stay safe online during the COVID-19 pandemic

Consent for sharing photos and videos

Do you have consent or permission to share a photo or video of someone?

These days it’s routine to take your phone out and start snapping away no matter where you are and what’s happening — almost every event gets captured and recorded.

It can be cool to have all these photos and videos to remember these moments by, but if you are going to share them on social media, make sure the people who are featured in the photos or videos are OK with it too.

When it comes to getting consent before uploading or sharing photos or video, here is what you need to know.

What to do

If you take a photo or video with someone in it, ask before sharing it

It’s that simple! If you take a photo of someone, ask before you post it or share it with other people. If they say they’d rather their photo didn’t appear on public social media accounts, then respect their decision.

If you’ve uploaded something and a person asks you to take it down, do it!

If you upload content that someone asks you to take down because they are in it, then take it down. If you respect the choices and decisions your mates make about their personal privacy, then they will usually respect your choices and decisions too.

Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want people to see in 5 years’ time

Lastly, follow your instincts. If you don’t feel good about posting a photo or video of someone because you think it could have long term consequences for them, don’t post it. Unfortunately, once you post something, you lose control of the content and that could be unfair and even devastating for people who may not have wanted the image to be shared. It could even mean that you or your friends miss out on jobs or other opportunities in the future. Find out more about your digital reputation.

Don’t forward on or share something that could be embarrassing

If someone sends you a photo or video that you know would be embarrassing for the person in it, or they would not like other people to see it, don’t forward it on to other people. Break the chain and tell the person who originally sent it to you to stop forwarding it on too. This is really important if the images that were sent to you are nudes. If you know the person who is being targeted, reach out to them. Let them know you have their back and make sure they are OK.

Speak up

If you are out and about and notice a camera and you don't want your photo to be taken speak up — it is OK to not want your image to be captured.

Put your phone down, not everything needs to be captured

It might be funny in the moment but try and put yourself in the other person’s shoes. Whether it’s a video of them falling over, or something else which might make them feel embarrassed, put the phone down. Things that might seem funny to you may not amusing to the other person. You don’t want to upload something that could hurt someone’s feelings, make them feel embarrassed or affect their future opportunities.