Finland moves to ban unsolicited dick pics

woman on phone
Surveys have consistently shown around half of young women have received unwanted dick pics. Photo credit: Getty

Nobody wants them, but as any young woman could attest to, the dick pics keep on coming. 

Finnish women have had enough, and the government there is now proposing making unsolicited sexual images a crime, punishable by up to six months in prison.

"Sexual harassment is quite common and that the victims of this type of behaviour are most often female, so it is very relevant to consider how it should be dealt with in law," senior legislative adviser Sami Kiriakos told Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Surveys have consistently shown around half of young women have received unwanted dick pics. Experts have offered various reasons why they're sent, including showing dominance, flirting or hoping to get a nude back.

"It's not that different from old school exhibitionism," LA Centre for Healthy Sex expert Alexandra Katehakis told CNN last year. "We think of the creepy guy in the trenchcoat. This is the modern-day version of this." 

Under present Finnish law, sexual harassment has to involve physical contact, AFP reports. New Zealand doesn't have a law against unsolicited dick pics - NetSafe says the Harmful Digital Communications Act can only be invoked if the behaviour is persistent, or the images are sent to a minor. 

The only countries that currently have laws against unsolicited sexual images appear to be Singapore and Scotland, while the US state of Texas has made it a misdemeanour, punishable by a small fine. California and New York look set to follow, with Bills currently in progress. 

Texas' law was drafted with the help of bosses from feminist dating app Bumble, which doesn't let men initiate conversations - women have to send the first message - but concerns have been raised it won't work, because Americans have the right to free speech under the constitution - even when it comes to dick pics.

It's perhaps no surprise Finland's leader is a young woman herself - 35-year-old Sanna Marin, who was dubbed the Finnish answer to Jacinda Ardern when she took the reins in 2019. 

"These types of offenses, or virtually anything that occurs on the web, may be very difficult to investigate," said Kiriakos.

Sexual imagery isn't the only part of Finnish law undergoing review - the definition of rape is set to be changed to mean sex without consent. It presently requires violence or the threat of violence to be a crime, AFP reports. New Zealand law requires explicit consent for sexual activity to avoid being considered rape or unlawful sexual connection. 

If you have witnessed or experienced sexual harassment or assault and would like to speak to someone, you could call the HELP support service.

  • Auckland: (09) 623 1700 or visit 
  • Wellington: (04) 801 6655 or visit