Texas women sue website, host over "revenge porn"

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If you've never heard of "revenge porn," count yourself among the lucky ones. A group of Texas women are taking their battle to court to fight back against a website that publishes explicit photos of women without their consent.

Revenge porn is described as explicit, often nude, photos submitted to a website by a scorned ex-lover. Often times these sites will also publish identifying information, like the woman's name, age or a screenshot of their Facebook profiles.

A group of 25 women in Texas are filing a class action lawsuit against Texxxan.com and its hosting company, GoDaddy.com, and are requesting a permanent injunction on the website.

Hollie Toups, 32, speaking with CBS Dallas-Fort Worth, said she shocked to find her semi-nude photos on the site, along with identifying information. Toup, who works as a teacher's aide in Beaumont, Texas, believes her ex-boyfriend submitted her private photos to the website. The exposure on the site has already affected her life offline.

"I was at a store one day and somebody was like hey you're the girl from that website," Toups told CBS Dallas-Fort Worth.

One of the challenges Toups and her cohorts face is that Texxxan.com is run by an anonymous party and the website is protected by Domains By Proxy - a paid service that conceals a website owner's personal information.

"I am very confident I will find that person," says John S. Morgan, plaintiff's attorney, told CBS Dallas-Forth Worth. "It really touched my heart the amount of emotional devastation every one of these women have suffered."

Ultimately, the women want the website shut down and the identity of the administrator exposed, but the damage may have already been done.

"It was humiliating. I didn't want to go anywhere. I started questioning people's politeness," Toups said, and wondered if in the backs of people minds they were thinking, "I saw you on that site."

GoDaddy did not immediately respond to CBS News' request for comment.

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