Erin Gloria Ryan, a writer for popular women's website Jezebel.com, was alerted to the [creepshots] forum by concerned Reddit users who are trying to get it closed, partly because some of the pictures appear to have been taken in schools.
A day later, MailOnline's Michael Zennie wrote an article about Reddit and creepshots:
Campaigners are fighting to close an online forum that promotes the photographing of unsuspecting women for users' sexual gratification.
The message board on the popular website Reddit was explicitly created by users who wanted to ogle candid photos that were taken without the subjects' knowledge.
The sub-forum is called 'CreepShots', featuring images of ordinary women on the street, in the gym or even at school who are caught unawares by stealthy 'creeps' with cameras.
Most shots focus on the buttocks or breasts of non-consenting women going about their daily lives - and users admit that 'at least 40 percent' of the images are of underage girls.
Someone at MailOnline then decided to illustrate the article with FOUR of the creepshot photos the article is complaining about.
There is no justification for publishing any of these images. Indeed, MailOnline has now removed all the photos from the article - albeit, some 15 hours after it was first published - a clear indication it knew this was a serious error.
Two of the photos were upskirt shots of schoolgirls whose faces were not shown. There was simply no way for the MailOnline to know how old they were. In one caption, they said:
Another image in a school tries to capture an 'upskirt' of a pupil.
In the other:
Online voyeurism: A large number of the 'Creep' forums are 'upskirt' images, apparently taken in school.
'Online voyeurism' indeed. It's not that unusual for the Mail and MailOnline to display such hypocrisy - as with The X Factor final, it can froth about sexualised images while simultaneously revelling in such material.
But in this case, MailOnline has gone further. It admits the photos were taken 'without permission' and yet deems them suitable to publish. It refers to the fact that many of the images are apparently of 'underage girls', yet deems them suitable to publish. Given the faces are covered, MailOnline has no idea how old any of the girls are, yet deems them suitable to publish.
Mail editor-in-chief Paul Dacre told Leveson he was "very proud of MailOnline." It won newspaper website of the year at the 2012 Press Awards. MediaGuardian recently named MailOnline publisher Martin Clarke as the 38th most powerful media figure.
* This is the article before the photos were removed - this blog has decided to censor the images:
UPDATE 1: During writing this post, and one hour after removing all the pics, MailOnline edited the article and re-published the first photo.
UPDATE 2: An hour after that, another photo re-appeared, but it was now partly censored with a black box.
(Hat-tip to Simon)