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Terrabatue's avatar

Would this cause a reasonable person to fear bodily injury or death?

Asked by Terrabatue (4points) August 5th, 2011

Say you are a student and walking around a college campus. You notice on a few separate days there is someone consistently in your proximity at various building on campus, and this person is taking pictures of your entire body from the backside using an electronic device. Everything is done in public, during daytime hours, you don’t know this person, they never communicate with you, and they never go to your residence or your vehicle. The person is NOT taking pictures under your clothing in any way. Would this cause “a reasonable person to fear bodily injury or death”?

Yes or No responses are accepted – I’m going to calculate a statistical confidence interval for the responses, but I would appreciate any other thoughts you may have on the subject posted. Thank you for your help!

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18 Answers

_zen_'s avatar


Taking pictures is not a threat to your life.

You can’t tell – even from looking carefully at the camera and its lens, what the picture taken is exactly – so how did you get to “all the parts of the body from behind.” But anyway, that’s not even the point – since when can someone not take pictures outside in daylight?

Walk around London and smile – you are being photgraphed all the time everywhere.

Welcome to fluther.

Seelix's avatar


I wouldn’t be comfortable with it, but I wouldn’t fear bodily harm or death.

Jeruba's avatar

What the wording of this question makes me wonder is whether you are the one taking the pictures.

If I knew someone were following me around and taking pictures of me from behind, repeatedly, it would make me fearful in a general way, as would any inappropriate attention (“inappropriate” being fairly subjective in this context), and I would wonder what he or she was up to. If it were always behind my back, I’m not sure how I would know unless someone else reported it to me.

I would not immediately think of bodily harm or death, but I would certainly think of unpleasantness and distress. I would feel threatened.

Aethelflaed's avatar

How would I know that they never follow me to my car or to my home? They follow me around at school, so clearly we aren’t talking about someone with a healthy set of boundaries, and just because I don’t see something doesn’t mean it’s not there.

How are we defining a “reasonable person”? That seems like a really vague and subjective term there.

I don’t know that I’d fear bodily harm or death right away, but I’d definitely fear for something; this person seriously comes across as up to no good. And I would to to a police officer about them stalking me. And I’m hesitant to state that I wouldn’t fear bodily harm or death without being in that situation or that I definitely would; it’s a situation I’d have to be in to know.

Did you do this to someone, and now you’re charged with stalking and think it’s crap?

Blueroses's avatar

Yes. I’d feel very uncomfortable and my mind would leap to worst case scenario.

bea2345's avatar

Yes. That is harassment.

nikipedia's avatar

I’m going with yes. Someone who violates your boundaries in one respect (following you and taking photographs without your consent) is definitely at risk for violating your boundaries in another way (bodily harm).

boxer3's avatar

It sounds like someones been accused of “terrorizing, and stalking”.....and taking butt shots of someone…. I dunno, I might not be fearing for my life, but creeped out? yep.

Edit: for your calculations- I guess I’d go with no. .... but still.

YoBob's avatar


I would, however, cause a reasonable person to report the weirdo for stalking you.

You are going to have to have something a bit more concrete (like said person advancing on you with a weapon in hand) before you can take the type of extreme actions that generally require the “I was in fear of my life” justification.

slopolk's avatar

At this point I would say no, however if it makes you feel uncomfortable then approach the person and confront them it maybe a good idea to have a friend go with you.

gailcalled's avatar

I would point the person out to the campus police and have them ask that he stop.

flo's avatar

There is nothing about what he is doing that says he wouldn’t go any further or that he would. But in order for it to be a violation it doesn’t have to be physical harm. If the stalker is making a point of not hiding it from the stalkee, then he/she is either trying to terrorizing the stalkee or the stalker got the “how to meet your significant other” from the wrong source. It should still be reported. And because taking of the pictures involved I’m guessing it would be more than just simple stalking. Just because something is not illegal doesn’t mean it is acceptable behaviour. Purposely disturbing people is wrong.

Sunny2's avatar

Welcome to Fluther!
I’d worry about it. It’s an invasion of sorts and who knows why? Perhaps you could enlist a friend to ask him what’s up as he’s taking the pictures.

augustlan's avatar

I’d be scared and completely creeped out, but I don’t think I’d immediately be afraid that they’d physically harm me.

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