Celebrities: they’re just like us! They take naked pictures of themselves, and document their sexy times. The only difference is that when celebrities’ sexy photos inevitably wind up in the wrong hands, TMZ actually cares about it. (Trust us: we’ve sent TMZ tons of pictures of our genitals, and haven’t gotten a whisper of press out of it.)
But what’s a celebrity to do when their intimate moments are splashed across all corners of the web? Well, whether you’re Blake Lively or Anthony Weiner, we’ve got a strategy for you. So pull up a chair, and listen closely, famous padawans.
Step One: Ascertain whether the pictures are, in fact, of you. Unless you’re a total Luddite, chances are pretty good that there are some naked pictures of you out there somewhere. But are the photos that have surfaced on the internet the ones from your secret stash—or are they just a really good (or not so good) fake? If they’re not the real deal, proceed to step two. But if the real McCoy has made it online, hurry yourself to step three.
Step Two: They’re totally fake. Deny, deny, deny (or ignore, ignore, ignore). Everyone knows the internet is full of Photoshop-wielding liars—so it shouldn’t be that hard to convince people that the photos aren’t you, and get them to move on. Have your PR team release a statement to that effect, and stop taking questions about the photos.
Alternately, just ignore the story entirely. This only works in some cases (like photos that are really borderline, or obviously fake), but if it’s really not you, chances are pretty good that the truth will out, without you having to worry your pretty little head about it.
[But what if you have some particularly dedicated individuals claiming that the fake photos are real? Stand by the original press release, and ignore the rest of the story. It'll die down...eventually.]
Step Three: They’re real. Cop to it. Given that the internet is full of Photoshop-wielding liars, you may be tempted to deny the provenance of your nudie photos. Don’t do this. If someone’s determined to prove that it’s you, they won’t stop until the story has been confirmed—and if you get caught lying about your naked photos, you’ll end up looking way worse than you would have if you’d just admitted they were real.
As far as we’re concerned, the best strategy is the one employed by Chelsea Handler (or, if you prefer, Hoopz). Acknowledge that the sex tape (or sexy photos) is the real deal, remind the press that recording your love is a natural part of life, and remind the world that this is just more proof that we all need to be careful about who we trust with our naked image. If you’re not outraged, ashamed, or professing betrayal, there’s not much of a story, and the news cycle will die down rather quickly. Which, by the by, is a good segue to
Step Four: Whatever you do, don’t sue. Some have declared it odd that Anthony Weiner has declined to launch an investigation into the hacking of his Twitter account. We think he’s smart. Though Americans tend to view legal action as the cure all to every single one of life’s little problems, the truth of the matter is that bringing lawyers into the story is a recipe for a long, complicated, and very drawn out battle—one that won’t necessarily render proper justice (and will almost definitely keep the story of your naked photos in the news for a lot, lot longer). If you’re really interested in making the story of your sexual exploits disappear, you’re better off grinning and bearing it for the time being—and relying on the internet’s notoriously short attention span to see that the story gets buried pretty quickly.
(One caveat: if, perchance, you are one of those “celebrities” who seeks notoriety at any cost, ignore step four. A lawsuit is an excellent way to get your name in the press repeatedly—so fire up the lawyers and have at it!)
(Okay, one more caveat: We are not lawyers. Please do not construe step four as actual legal advice.)