Senior EU aide in nudey photo scandal as Brussels warns ‘Think Before You Post’
In the week that the European Commission spread the message to young internet users to ‘Think before you post’, it emerges one older internaut within the commission itself could have done with the same advice.
Fast starting to do the rounds of European Commission email inboxes, BM’s included, is the publicly-accessible profile of one high-placed Brussels aide on a well-known social networking site.
While the senior official has not used his own name, the person on the profile is identifiably him, and hosts a startling gallery of shots depicting him in various stages of undress, baring the physique of which he is clearly quite proud.
Most distressing is the photo of the commission advisor sporting nothing but a strategically-placed baseball cap and a wry grin.
For reasons of taste, BM has chosen not to republish the images or identify the cabinet official in question. Indeed, you could say that the ‘Monster ‘thought before it posted’…
How apt, however, that this Tuesday, on the occasion of Safer Internet Day, EU commissioner Viviane Reding was preaching of the risks of uploading ill-advised images.
Publishing personal information or pictures, she warned, “may lead to embarrassing or even traumatic situations.”
“Young people do not always realize the risk that online images and videos may circulate beyond their control and knowledge.”
Nor, it seems, do older people.
And as the incoming team of commissioners heralds a shake-up in the teams of cabinet advisors that work for them, this final warning note from Reding carries extra piquancy for at least one internet user in the uppest echelons of Eurocracy:
“Posting photos from what may have been an unforgettably fun moment may have future unintended consequences such as the way a potential employer will consider job applications.”
(That said, the publication of revealing photos never did Verheugen any harm…)