Current and former AFL players involved in a mass leak or personal and private images were likely informed about the risks of sharing intimate photos online.
The revelation comes as one of the players involved in the scandal said he was “really disappointed”.
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It is a serious violation of privacy. It’s just not fair,’ he told the herald sun.
Channel 7 commentator and former Essendon player Jobe Watson said he and his teammates were told they could “lose control” of their private images.
“We’ve been told that once something leaves your phone, it goes into the public domain, even if you think it’s a private message,” he told Sunrise on Thursday.
‘That you do lose control of that. There was a real education piece on how to handle that and be careful what you give other people.
“You don’t know where it’s sent and unfortunately it’s part of society, you don’t have any control once it leaves your private phone.”
Channel 7 commentator and former Essendon player Jobe Watson said players were told they could “lose control” of their private images if they entered the public domain.
The league and police are investigating a Google Drive file containing photos, videos and screenshots purportedly showing more than 45 players, including Brownlow’s medalists, after it began circulating on social media.
The file link lists each player’s name, which is accompanied by a folder of explicit and graphic photos and images purportedly of them.
Sunrise host Natalie Barr noted that many of the photos were “missing heads” and therefore “could be anything” or photoshopped.
“A lot of them could be digitally altered, which happens nowadays, and then that player, their names get dragged through the mud,” he said.
“Previous players in particular, family members, there are a lot of people that this directly affects and there’s no proof of who it really is,” Watson said.
“I’m sure there will be a lot of players looking for support, so it’s a nerve-wracking period for them.”
In a statement on Wednesday, an AFL spokesperson said the images had been shared without consent but had not yet been verified.
A google drive contains a list of player names with folders of images pretending to be them
Former Essendon Bombers player Jobe Watson (pictured in 2017) said he and his teammates had been briefed on the risks of sharing intimate images online.
“The AFL has been made aware of private and personal images of past and present AFL players being distributed and shared illegally and without consent after being contacted by various AFL clubs,” a spokesperson said.
“The images have been distributed by an anonymous person and the files are alleged to feature private and personal images of past and present AFL players, however it is important to note that many of the images have yet to be verified for Your ID”.
‘There appears to be significant work involved in collecting images and creating files for distribution.
“The AFL has no information as to why personal images have been circulated illegally and without consent or what is the reason for doing so.”
Geelong Hall of Famer great Jimmy Bartel lashed out at the “disgusting” person or people behind the major leak.
“It’s disgusting, most of the images are fake, made up, staged,” he told 3AW radio.
It’s someone dirty who will hopefully get caught. This is a criminal matter now.
Melbourne Demons legend Garry Lyon urged fans not to share the footage.
“If they send it to you and you send it, you are in a big conflict and you can go to jail,” Lyon told SEN Breakfast on Thursday.
‘My message would be this… if you receive it, forward it at your own risk. Because then you are spreading photos that have been obtained illegally and then you are just as responsible as the person who started it. I’m serious here, that’s a big deal.
The AFL Players Association said the leak was a “appalling and disgusting act”.
In a statement on Wednesday, an AFL spokesperson said the images had been shared without consent but had yet to be verified (AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan pictured)
“The AFL Players Association is aware that the AFL is investigating a collection of explicit images that have been circulated of past and present players without their consent,” chief executive Paul Marsh said in a statement on Wednesday by the night.
“While it is important to note that some of the images may not be legitimate, this is a shocking and disgusting act and likely illegal violation of privacy that is unacceptable.
“We ask the public to treat this matter seriously and not search or share any of these photos and respect the rights and privacy of those affected.”
Marsh said the incident was now in the hands of the police and the players were being supported with legal and welfare services.
The AFL Integrity Unit (AFLIU) has started working with the Electronic Security Commissioner to remove the images from the internet.
“The AFL has also informed the relevant law enforcement agencies of the situation,” a spokesman said.
Daily Mail Australia is not suggesting wrongdoing by the AFL players, nor has it verified the authenticity of any of the images.