As debate continued to rage over the tragic fate of Tiziana Cantone, privacy tsar Antonello Soro said a public prosecutor had erred when he ruled in October 2015 that the 31-year-old woman's case could not be considered as an illegal breach of her privacy.
The prosecutor did not act on Cantone's complaint on the grounds that she had voluntarily shared the video with friends and had not explicitly notified them not to post it online.
Soro told Sky TG24 that this conclusion was “absolutely against Italy's law which says that the diffusion of sensitive data can only happen with the explicit consent of the interested party”. Cantone was found hanging at her aunt's home on Tuesday.
Four men are under investigation for suspected defamation contributing to a suicide apparently caused by a smartphone-filmed video of her performing a sex act on her then boyfriend. According to media reports, Cantone sent the recording to friends including an ex-boyfriend.
It was soon posted online and quickly went viral with over a million people seeing footage which featured her saying “You're filming? Bravo.”
Her comment caught on as a catchphrase and Cantone moved to Tuscany and tried to change her name in a bid to escape the humiliation.
Cantone eventually won a ruling ordering the removal of the video from Facebook and search engine directories under European “right to be forgotten” legislation.
But she was also ordered to pay 20,000 euros ($22,500) towards the cost of the case on the grounds that she had consented to the filming — a final “insult” that some have blamed for tipping the distraught 31-year-old over the edge.
Soro said that the so-called right to be forgotten could not solve all the problems generated by a compromising video going viral.
“We have to be more aware of the traps we expose ourselves to when we post ever more shots of our private lives on the web.”
The Cantone case has coincided with another one in which a video of a teenage girl being raped in a Rimini nightclub was posted online, apparently by friends of hers who had filmed the attack on a phone held over the top of a cubicle.