Funded by the American Council of Learned Societies & the Hanse-Wissenshaftskolleg, researchers at the University of Colorado determined that close to half of people who share explicit or nude images of others without permission may actually feel remorse afterward.
The study appeared in the journal First Monday.
The findings were based on the analysis of statements made during law enforcement investigations of image-sharers.
Among perpetrators of such acts, many deny responsibility, neutralize actions, and inflict blame on others, according to researchers.
“These statements describe nonconsensual sexual image sharing as accidental, thoughtless, or impulsive, which supports some previous survey research,” the journal article reads.
“Our findings suggest that Internet researchers studying online abuse might pay greater attention to shame management, including how people blame digital technology for harmful behavior.”
“We conclude that restorative justice processes could potentially help people who have committed image-based abuse acknowledge shame and try to repair the harm.”