'Dating Naked' Castmember Sues VH1 for $10M for Showing Her Naked

By Brett Snider, Esq. on August 26, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

"Dating Naked" is a dating reality show following the success of Discovery Channel's "Naked and Afraid," but one castmember is apparently a bit miffed at just how much "naked" VH1 broadcast.

Jessie Nizewitz, 28, is a New York model and a plaintiff in a $10 million lawsuit against VH1's operator Viacom for allowing a brief crotch shot (unblurred) to be shown in an episode of "Dating Naked." According to Entertainment Weekly, Nizewitz was assured that her genitals would be blurred, and now that viewers have caught wind, she's been "humiliated on social media."

Can Nizewitz really sue over a naked shot on a naked show?

Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress?

The "crotch shot" in question happened during an episode of "Dating Naked" where Nizewitz and her potential date were playfully wrestling down by the beach. According to the New York Post, Nizewitz covered her body in wet sand but was otherwise, as the show promises, dating naked. EW reports that after the episode aired, Nizewitz suffered "extreme emotional distress" after seeing uncensored images of her naked nethers being shared via Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and Instagram.

The tort of intentional infliction of emotional distress covers situations in which "extreme or outrageous conduct" causes severe emotional distress to a person. This conduct typically must be either intentional or known by the defendant that it would likely cause great emotional distress. In Nizewitz's case, she's alleging that Viacom and the show's producers kept her nudie shot unblurred either intentionally or recklessly; she claims they knew (or should have known) that it might make her a social media joke.

The Post reports that the humiliation didn't stop at social media; even the model's grandmother saw the footage and "didn't have much to say to [her]."

Proving Emotional Distress

In cases of intentional infliction of emotional distress, plaintiffs like Nizewitz don't typically have to prove that there was a physical medical condition associated with the emotional distress. However, in order to have a judge or jury believe that Viacom and the show's producers owe Nizewitz $10 million, she'll need to provide some evidence of her emotional distress like:

  • Testimony about the intensity and duration of her mental anguish;
  • A psychologist or doctor's evaluation of the stress and anxiety caused by the incident; or
  • Evidence of headaches, ulcers, or insomnia due to the incident.

Even if she gets her ten mil, it's unlikely Nizewitz will be getting naked on camera again.

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