Czech-language, racist website asked people to "Snap an immigrant!", Roma and tourists were in the photos
"Have you encountered suspicious individuals or entire groups in your area who decidedly do not look like tourists from Africa or from countries known for their sand and sun? Do you not know to whom to turn with your concerns? You can post them here with your photographs of possible illegal migrants," read the Czech-language website Vyfoť-imigranta.cz ("Snap an immigrant!") - at least, it did until 24 July.
Since February users have been uploading photographs of persons to the site whom they considered to be illegal migrants. The snapshots were taken in public places, predominantly of people with dark skin or in clothing indicating they were Muslim.
News server Aktuálně.cz reported on 25 July that apparently the photos were frequently of Romani people or tourists. The snapshots were augmented by data about the place and time they were taken, and frequently were accompanied by derogatory commentaries.
According to a spokesperson for the Czech Interior Ministry, Hana Malá, such behavior is on the border of legality if not completely illegal. "This could be an unauthorized violation of the personality rights of the persons who were depicted in those photographs in a disgusting, negative context," she told Aktuálně.cz.
Czech Police say they are investigating the website, but according to spokesperson Jozef Bocán, the case would be more in the purview of the Office for Personal Data Protection. That office, however, has not yet reviewed the matter because, according to spokesperson Tomáš Paták, Czech law on the protection of personal data has not been broken by the website.
"Not all handling of personal data or storage of personal data meets the definition of processing personal data. In and of itself, the publication of photographs on Vyfoť-imigranta.cz is rather a civil law matter," Paták said.
Should the people who have been photographed object to the administrators of the website about the use of their images, the entire case could end up in court. The website was most probably deleted by its administrator on Monday afternoon after the operator of the domain warned them of that possibility.
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