Nephew Sues Uncle for Posting Embarrassing Photo on Facebook
Family dinners for one Minnesota clan probably got a lot more uncomfortable after an uncle was sued for posting embarrassing photos of his nephew on Facebook. Unfortunately for the embarrassed nephew, it seems that a district court says the lawsuit has no merit.
Aaron Olson brought the harassment suit against his uncle, Randall LaBrie, after LaBrie posted a childhood photo of the young Aaron posing in front of a Christmas tree along with a snarky caption. LaBrie agreed to untag his nephew from the photo, but refused to take the embarrassing shot down. To add insult to injury, LaBrie told Olson that if he didn’t like it, he could just stay off Facebook.
While that certainly won’t win LaBrie any Uncle of the Year awards, he’s in the clear legally. Judge Natalie E. Hudson ruled that “to constitute harassment, words must have a substantial adverse effect on the safety, security, or privacy of another. Comments that are mean and disrespectful, coupled with innocuous family photos, do not affect a person’s safety, security, or privacy — and certainly not substantially so.”
We’re not sure which is worse: being an insensitive jerk, or being overly-sensitive and litigious. Either way, it’s clear now that you can’t sue over awkward family photos.