Celebrities caught up in the recent nude photo scandal were “dumb,” the new digital economy and society commissioner of the EU claimed.
Günther Oettinger, who will start his position as EU digital chief in November, said the celebrities involved in a round of leaks were at least partly to blame.
“Stupidity is something you can only partly save people from,” Oettinger said.
More than 100 celebrities have been included in the leaks, which began showing up on the internet image-sharing board 4chan late in August. The original round of pictures included Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton, and subsequent leaks have included Rihanna and Gabrielle Union.
Oettinger’s words have not gone over well. Julia Reda, a German politician with the Pirate Party, said the statement was “unbelievable.”
“The person applying to be in charge of shoring up trust in the internet so that Europeans do more business online, just blamed people whose personal data was accessed and spread without authorization,” she wrote in a blog post. “He placed the moral blame for that crime squarely on the victims rather than the perpetrators.”
“This elaborate blame game shifts responsibility from an obvious fact: It just isn’t wise to keep nude photos of yourself on the cloud if you don’t want them made public,” she wrote.
Others say this blame misplaced.
“If your reaction to the hack attack on celebrities is to blame them for taking nude photos,” she threatens, “you’re pointing the finger at the wrong person,” wrote Megan Gibson of Time.
But Günther Oettiger stood by his remarks. While he said the EU commission wants to make cloud computing safer, Oettinger said through a representative that he would not apologize for blaming celebrities for the nude photo leaks.