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Grans celebrate the red light

Grans celebrate the red light | Escorts |

In a busy passage in Amsterdam's red light district you'll find two famous great-grannies: Twins Louise and Martine Fokkens, the Dutch capital's oldest prostitutes...


In a busy passage in Amsterdam's red light district a crowd is gathering as fans jostle to have their picture taken with the city's most famous great-grannies: Twins Louise and Martine Fokkens, the Dutch capital's oldest prostitutes.


Decked out in matching red leather jackets and boots, red jeans and crocheted red berets, with Stars and Stripes scarves draped around their necks, the Fokkens cut a jaunty pair as they saunter down alleys with red-framed windows where semi-nude 'working women' put their bodies on display to lure customers.


Locals young and old line up for a chat, while gawking tourists look on in bemused confusion.


"Look it's the 'ouwe hoeren' (Dutch for old whores)," Koen Booij, 19, shouts affectionately before running up to Martine who hands him an autographed postcard advertising the sisters' latest tell-all book about Amsterdam's seedy-side, where the Fokkens have been working as prostitutes for the last half-a-century.


Since the early 1960s, first Louise and later Martine have been plying their trade around the infamous "Wallen" (Dutch for 'canal banks'), the world's best-known red light area.


Today there are an estimated 5000 to 8000 active sex-workers in Amsterdam — but only a fraction do business from behind the around 370 "frames" in the area, according to the city.


Now 70, the sisters shot to fame last year when a documentary — aptly titled "Ouwehoeren" and translated as "Meet the Fokkens" about their lives, played to critical acclaim at Amsterdam's International Documentary Film Festival.


The film was such a success that it was screened again at this year's festival last week.


Two tell-all books — one has already been translated into English, French and other languages - about the sisters' lives behind the red curtain followed.


A regular slot on a late-night sex-and-drugs talk show on Dutch television since October has cemented the twins' celebrity sex-worker status.


Their second book, "Ouwehoeren op reis" (Old Whores on a Journey) has just been released. Publisher Bertram en De Leeuw told AFP that 70 000 copies of the two books have already been sold in the Netherlands, propelling them into the Dutch best-seller list.


The Fokkens sisters — both great-grandmothers several times over — say they have seen it all: in the city where prostitutes have been selling their bodies to visiting sailors and other thrill-seekers since the 15th century, very little can still shock them.


"From fathers bringing their sons for a 'first-time experience' to those with a more kinky streak, you get all sorts, " Martine told AFP, sitting on the bed at the back of her "window" on the Oude Nieuwstraat, a small alleyway that lights up in neon red as soon as the sun goes down.


"We have slept with more men than you can count," cuts in Louise, sharing a look with her sister before they both burst into laughter: "We had some great fun with the men."


Two years ago, Louise finally hung up her stilletto boots because of arthritis — "You can't get into those sex positions", she says, while Martine still works once or twice a week, including Sundays, specialising in soft-core bondage for the older gentleman.


'The girls used to look after each other. No more'


In early October, the sisters became a regular feature on a sex-and drugs talk show called "Spuiten en Slikken" (Shoot and Swallow) as agony aunts dealing with uncomfortable questions about sex.


"I saw them on TV. I think they are fantastic," adoring fan Booij told AFP as he patiently waited to have his photo taken. "They answer the questions our parents can't."


"They're the real deal," said Jeanine, 20, a student at the University of Amsterdam who declined to give her second name, as she asked an AFP reporter to take her picture with the sisters on her mobile phone.

"They tell guys how to treat women properly," she added.


The sisters themselves seem surprised to have so many fans, but their words on love and relationships ring true — born of their own years of experience.


Despite their jolly demeanour and portrayal in the media as two eccentric Dutch aunts who just happens to be in the sex industry, their own story of personal hardship and abuse is never far below the surface.


"We had no money. My husband told me I had to go and work 'just for two years'," Louise said, her face hardening slightly as she remembers. "I didn't know what kind of work he meant. Now it's 50 years later."


"In the beginning it was really tough. You shut your brain down. In later years, it got better," she added.


Rampant violence and exploitation prompted the twins to set up the first trade union for sex-workers in the area called the "Little Red Light."


Asked whether they regretted anything about their lives, both sisters shook their heads: "We regret nothing except the fact that the red light district is changing."


"There is no code of honour any more, passed from one generation of working girls to the next," Louise said with a look of disgust.


"Today's girls wear almost no clothes. They deal and do drugs. It's about crime and money. No self-respecting prostitute does drugs," she said.


"In the olden days the girls used to look after each other. No more. The human feeling has left the red light district," she said.

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Apple’s Russian iTunes launch displaying escort/pornography sites

Apple’s Russian iTunes launch displaying escort/pornography sites | Escorts |

“In Soviet Russia, Porn blocks Apple.”


It appears Apple’s launch of iTunes music and movies in Russia is running into a bit of controversy with several Russian users noticing advertising for pornography websites and escort services in the iTunes’ movies section. As highlighted in the many tweets below, and reported by local blog, a section titled “more films in different languages” is displaying the pornographic content. speculated it might relate to an issue with temporary xxx placeholder links (machine translation):


Update: most likely, the problem arises because of links: the people responsible for iTunes, put the “temporary” link type xx.xx.xx. That’s just such a site exists, and, as we have seen today, has nothing to do with the ideals of the company.Waiting for the fix.


iTunes and the App Store are today experiencing global outages, as witnessed by the dozens of reports on Twitter. It’s unclear if that is possibly related to the issue with the Russian iTunes launch or if users in other countries recently given access to iTunes are experiencing similar bugs. We’ll keep you updated as we learn more.

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Siren - Busty blonde Euro Glamour model - PunterPress - Escorts News

Siren - Busty blonde Euro Glamour model - PunterPress - Escorts News | Escorts |

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Hot and sexy blonde Romanian beauty - PunterPress - Escorts News

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Male strippers on the job...

Male strippers on the job... | Escorts |

His story reads like a script from a movie: Small town boy, saddled with debt, turns to stripping to make extra cash while he figures out what he wants to do with his life. He becomes good at shedding his clothes for men and women, moves to the big city, and his career as a stripper takes off.


But for this 31-year-old Logan Square resident, who goes by the stage name "Blake," the limelight hasn't always been kind. His first time on stage, in 2004, he made $11.


"Seven dollars of it was from a guy. It was awful. I didn't know what I was doing," said Blake, who asked for his name to be withheld because he recently accepted a part-time job coaching a children's football team. "I was on stage going, 'What do I do next? Don't be boring. Do something.'"


Eight years later, Blake has perfected his moves and his look—which includes graying hair and an unshaven chest—though he admits he still gets nervous during performances.


The shy guy who avoided dancing when he was growing up in the Milwaukee area now gyrates for private bachelorette parties and on stage Saturdays for the all-male revue show SinZation at Circuit nightclub in Boystown.


"It is what it is. I wouldn't put it up there with doctor or astronaut," Blake, who is straight, said of his career choice, which earns him about $150 an hour on weekends. "I think there's a little bit 'This isn't what I would have chosen for myself.' "


Yet this may be male stripping's time to shine. Later this month, Channing Tatum will star in "Magic Mike," a Steven Soderbergh film reportedly about Tatum's previous career as a stripper.


And Tatum's not the only star taking (it) off: '80s heartthrob Joey Lawrence recently joined Chippendales in Las Vegas. Meanwhile, Illinois legislation that would tax strip clubs has cast a spotlight on the profession as well.


In Chicago, there are about 50 male strippers who work the club circuit, said talent booker Jeffrey Binninger, who produces SinZation. The demand for male strippers in Chicago is smaller than that in larger cities like New York and L.A., and in Miami and Vegas, which are tourist destinations for bachelorette parties, Binninger said.


There are a few clubs in Chicago that regularly feature male strippers, including Atmosphere in Andersonville and Cocktail and the Lucky Horseshoe Lounge in Boystown.


"When we have the dancers, we do very well," said Charlie Brown, who owns Atmosphere, which has featured male dancers for five years and now spotlights them at least two times a week. "A number of the dancers have followers who call and check up or check the Web page. We have regulars who will not come in if one of their dancers doesn't come in a certain night."


For Blake, who has danced at Atmosphere, typically in costume, stripping was supposed to be a temporary fix.


He was working as a bouncer for a Milwaukee-area gentlemen's club and then became a different kind of body man—serving as the body for body shots. He eventually transitioned into stripping because it made financial sense.


"I thought, 'I'm not going to be one of those frou frou guys prancing around.' But $8.25 an hour wasn't really cutting it," he said. "So really it was just hearing the dollar amounts and how it could help me catch up with life. That kind of did it for me."


He started out visiting small clubs in Iowa and Indiana by bus with other strippers. (It was during one of these trips that one of his friends suggested "Blake" as his stage name, which he adopted because he didn't hate it.)


He moved to Chicago shortly thereafter and stripping, once a quick solution, became his career. He said that at one point he was dancing at 10 different clubs in the Chicago and Milwaukee areas.


"I had resolved I was going to pay off these debts. And then when I did that I kind of had a change of heart," he said. "It's fun to do things you're good at. Connect with people. It's not just a sexual thing."


But, of course, there were complications. He had to tell his parents, who he said were surprised, though Mom may have had an inkling because she noticed how fast he was paying back the money owed her.


He didn't tell Dad, however, about stripping for men because he'd rather him not know —though Blake said he doesn't mind dancing for men.


He had to tell his friends. And he had to tell his significant others—but that was never too difficult since he tends to meet his love interests while stripping.


"There's some level of attraction and intrigue. There's something special about you," he said. "It's kind of, 'Hey can I try to convince you that this isn't all of me sometime?' " It's a line not unlike one Tatum's character says in a "Magic Mike" trailer.


Blake credits his success as a stripper to setting boundaries—a lesson he didn't learn early.

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Michelle - Sexy Euro Brunette - PunterPress - Escorts News

Michelle - Sexy Euro Brunette - PunterPress - Escorts News | Escorts |

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Phone Sex Secrets: Payments, Gift Cards, Gifts, Tips, Taxes & PSOs

Phone Sex Secrets: Payments, Gift Cards, Gifts, Tips, Taxes & PSOs | Escorts |

"Tips, or "tributes" as they are often called on the platform sites, are collected and dispensed by the phone sex platform company and therefore are part of reportable, taxable, income.


Gifts, however, are another matter."

Via Gracie Passette
Anthony Brown's comment, February 6, 2013 4:08 AM
A must read article for everyone. You'll love it. This is about how a woman enjoys sex with you -
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Drive-In 'Sex Boxes' Coming To Zurich

Drive-In 'Sex Boxes' Coming To Zurich | Escorts |
This ain't your mama's drive-in....


The city of Zurich, Switzerland is set to a build a series of drive-in "sex boxes" which, starting next August, will provide a discreet environment for prostitutes to meet clients.


The "boxes" are garage-like structures that are large enough for a car to be parked inside. According to the Telegraph, the site will facilitate meetings for around 30 prostitutes, and clients will use the drive-in slots on a first-come -- ahem -- first-served basis.


Prostitution is legal in Switzerland, but Zurich officials have struggled with controlling sex-trade related crime and violence.

"We can't get rid of prostitution, so have to learn how to control it," police spokesman Reto Casanova said in 2010, when the idea was first introduced.


The decision was also motivated by complaints of city-dwellers unhappy with seeing prostitutes walking the streets.


"We're sick to death of looking at it," one resident said, according to the Mail Online.


Michael Herzig, of Zurich's social welfare department, says that getting prostitutes off the streets will also be beneficial to the women involved in the world's oldest profession.


"The women will be better protected from attack, and it will also mean better business for them," he told Swiss Radio, as translated by the Telegraph. "With the women right by the sex boxes there is no 'travel time' so they can deal with more customers."


Women working in the boxes will be required to take out medical insurance and pay for a license fee, the Sun reports. Additionally, each night they work, they will need to insert five Swiss francs into a machine to "clock in."


The boxes have faced some local opposition.


Margrit Haller, representing Swiss People’s Party in Altstetten, told World Radio Switzerland in 2011 that, "The idea that women will be better protected and monitored is good, but I don’t really see it as an alternative that women either work the streets or work in the boxes.”


Nevertheless, voters gave a green light to the creation of the boxes in a national referendum last March. Installation was approved by the Zurich city council on Monday, the Local reports.


Drive-in sex boxes are already employed in several German cities.



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Q+A-London Olympics: The sex-trafficking event that wasn't - TrustLaw

Q+A-London Olympics: The sex-trafficking event that wasn't - TrustLaw | Escorts |
Fears that the Olympic Games would create a surge in sex trafficking were unfounded - expert...


Media reports predicting that London would be overrun by women trafficked to Britain to service spectators with sex during the Olympics reinforced negative stereotypes and diminished the complexity of trafficking, an expert said.


Georgina Perry, who manages Open Doors, a service for sex workers in London, said fears the Olympic Games would create a surge in sex trafficking were unfounded. The hype around this issue also drove vulnerable sex workers from health care services out of fear they would be treated as criminals, putting them at risk, she added.


Although London's Met Police are investigating one case of trafficking for sexual exploitation linked to the Olympics, there was no rise in trafficking directly connected to the event, Laura Godman, a spokeswoman for the Met Police, said.


"It remains our duty and intent to prepare for any occasion which may instigate or facilitate trafficking," Godman told TrustLaw. "Trafficking for sexual exploitation - or any other purpose - is difficult to measure, not only because of the way in which victims are trafficked and exploited but because quite often the victims do not realise that they are being trafficked, or that the life they have been coerced into is not normal."


In October, Open Doors published a survey of 100 sex workers, which showed that 93 percent of them did not come to London specifically seeking Olympic trade and 58 percent of them reported having fewer customers during the Olympics.


In an interview with TrustLaw, Open Door's Perry talked about sex trafficking and the myth that sporting events causes it to increase, among other topics...

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Why I'm Opposed to Criminalising the Purchase of Sex

Why I'm Opposed to Criminalising the Purchase of Sex | Escorts |

The Member of the Scottish Parliament, Rhoda Grant, believes sex workers are imbeciles who should be denied the right to earn a living and subjected to state-sanctioned sexual assault to ensure that they comply with the dictates imposed upon their profession. Not that she puts it quite like that.


In her proposed bill to criminalise the purchase of sex in Scotland (open to public consultation until the 14th of December), she's gone for a paternalistic tone, suggesting authority with her (unfounded and patently untrue) statements about the sex industry while offering protection to the poor souls forced to work in it with promises to keep them safe from the big bad men who exploit them by paying to have sex with them. She's very noble in her presentation: she's also woefully uninformed. As a result, the proposed bill is based on presumption, prejudice, and stereotype, not on fact. But then, who needs facts when emotive statements, hyperbole, and fudged statistics will do the job just as well? It's not as if the outcome of the bill will affect the lives of thousands or anything.


Grant's theory is that criminalising the purchase of sex will end demand for the services of sex workers. Her initial claim, sort of said in the draft bill, was that the sex industry would simply vanish into thin air when all sex workers were given nice jobs that didn't offend her moral sensibilities. Then, talking in the Daily Record in November, she declared "If you drive it underground so no one can find it, it wouldn't survive". Speaking on Sunday Politics Scotland last weekend, she then decided that it needed to stay visible so those wishing to purchase sex could find it. Seems she's more than a little confused. Criminalising sex will drive the industry underground, but it's not going to die there...

FetishCOD's comment, December 18, 2012 2:33 AM
Disgusting. Politicians need to keep their noses out of the sex industry.
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Prostitution Ban In The EU Would Be Bad News For Sex Worker Safety

Prostitution Ban In The EU Would Be Bad News For Sex Worker Safety | Escorts |
EU women’s groups calling for a prostitution ban spanning the European Union. Proposal would make selling sex or paying for prostitutes illegal throughout.


Ugh. So anti- this proposal from European women’s groups calling for a prostitution ban spanning the European Union. The aim is to combat gender inequality and violence against women by making selling or paying for sex illegal, a campaign spokeswoman said. But further criminalizing female sex workers, making it impossible for them to earn a living or forcing them into deeper underground avenues seems like kind of a jackass way of helping, no?


To really help requires first acknowledging that they don’t call it ‘the oldest profession’ for nothing. Prostitution will never go away. From a government or policy standpoint, the only things you can do are either drive it further into the shadows and margins of society or develop policies that make it safer for all parties involved.

And to make it safer for all involved requires at least decriminalization, if not legalization, of prostitution.


Why? Sex workers who don’t fear their own arrest and prosecution will be more likely to report abuse and assault. The ability to advertise and publicly discuss sex for sale injects more transparency and accountability into the industry (imagine how much a Yelp for escort agencies, brothels, etc., could add to client and hooker safety!). And law enforcement could stop wasting time and money prosecuting a broadly victimless crime and concentrate on the subsets of the industry where abuse, human trafficking and other bad things are happening.


This campaign — led by by the European Women’s Lobby (EWL), which will present its policy recommendations to members of the European Parliament on Wednesday — has good intentions. But its logic is so fundamentally flawed. EWL spokeswoman Pierrette Pape told the BBC:


“The most important thing to understand about prostitution is that imposing sexual intercourse with money is a form of violence that shouldn’t be accepted.”


If offering monetary compensation is a form of imposing violence, that most employers in the world would be coercive criminals! It’s silly.


Crusades like this remind me of the women’s temperance movement in the early 1900s (at least as portrayed in “Boardwalk Empire” and high school history textbooks), taking aim at something causally related to undesired or harmful behavior instead of directly at the behavior itself. You can’t stop people from drinking and you can’t stop people from f**king. Might as well make these activities safer instead of vehemently denying that.


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‘We Are Dancers’ Aims to Organize the Excluded - Working In These Times

‘We Are Dancers’ Aims to Organize the Excluded - Working In These Times | Escorts |

Addressing a packed room of working women and their supporters this past week at the Ford Foundation, SEIU Healthcare 775NW President David Rolf told them not to listen to people who say they need to make their lives "more like the lives of 'real workers.' They are real workers."


Rolf's remarks came while praising the work of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, which had just released a groundbreaking study of domestic workers in the United States. They have succeeded in organizing a workforce that many had thought impossible to organize. It's an assumption also commonly made about another "excluded" class of service workers: sex workers.


Like domestic workers, sex workers perform labor that is often understood as just what women do (read: for free). They've had to fight just to convince people, even other people in the labor and women's movements, that their work is work, and that they deserve control over it. But whereas the domestic workers movement has enjoyed tremendous support over the last 10 years, sex workers have largely been left to fight on their own.


One sector of the sex trade has been the focus of U.S. labor organizing: exotic dancing, or stripping. Dancers have staged union drives, pickets, and strikes, and have won unionization at one shop, the Lusty Lady in San Francisco. The Lusty Lady is sometimes considered the ne plus ultra of dancer activism—but it's not the only model out there. I say this as a proud, former member of the Exotic Dancers Union: What worked in one shop is not going to work everywhere, and like the domestic workers, if we hold out for a union, we might be waiting for a long time.


The same factors that make dancing a flexible job also allow dance club management to violate their workers' rights. In most clubs, management charge dancers "stage fees" per shift, require dancers to share their tips with support staff and management, and illegally classify dancers as independent contractors on the books while treating them like employees in the club. Over the last 15 years, hundreds of dancers have benefited from class action lawsuits brought against club owners, usually by former dancers who are less fearful of retaliation. Last month saw one of the biggest settlements awarded a dancer class—$13 million, in a suit against the Spearmint Rhino chain—but using lawsuits to recover stolen earnings isn't a viable option for most dancers. It's also no replacement for organizing.


So where can dancers who want to organize begin? As is the case for many service workers, the first step for dancers is to learn what rights they already have. But dancers may need different or additional resources than labor organizers can offer them. Rather than view this as an obstacle, We Are Dancers, a project led by current and former dancers in New York City, is using it an entry point for successful outreach.


As the first members of We Are Dancers came together, co-founder Rachel Aimee told me, "we talked about how other groups of dancers had organized in the past." Aimee is a former dancer, as well as a writer and one of the founders of the influential sex work magazine, $pread. She was familiar with dancers' range of concerns and the history of previous organizing.


"Even though the Lusty Lady is awesome, and there should be lots more dancer-owned clubs, it’s not necessarily a model that works for all the women in the stripping industry," says Aimee. "Working on the books and owning and running a club isn’t necessarily what most dancers are looking for in the stripping industry."


Instead, We Are Dancers looked to "Dancers Are Special," a project by the D.C.-based community organization Different Avenues. As Aimee explained, it's an approach that is "more about harm reduction, education and community building, rather than trying to push a specific agenda for how we should be changing the industry."


In November We Are Dancers launched a comprehensive guide for dancers on legal rights, health, and finance online. (They will soon release a translated website, in Spanish, Russian and Portuguese, as well as a print version of their resource guide to be distributed in New York dance clubs.) In partnership with the Sex Workers Project at the Urban Justice Center, which provides client-centered legal and social services to individuals who engage in sex work, We Are Dancers shares legal resources with dancers on labor violations, including sexual harassment and discrimination, as well as on rights related to employee and independent contractor status. They also offer referrals to understanding health care and financial professionals who dancers can turn to without fearing judgment or exposure. "Dancers may be good at taking care of others," their guide states, "but we also have to take care of ourselves."


One critical step for We Are Dancers is getting their outreach materials into the hands of dancers: some clubs won't allow women to enter "unescorted" by men and others charge steep cover fees for entry. Like any organizers going into a new workplace, they'll need to find a way to connect with people who are on the job without exposing them to scrutiny from co-workers or management. For this reason, they'd like to train and pay current and former dancers as outreach workers, so dancers have the opportunity to get connected with their peers.


"I hope that dancers will start to feel that they have more options for dealing with some of the problematic aspects of working in the industry," Aimee says, "and that they don’t just have to accept the way things are—whether that means moving to a club that treats the dancers better, finding community support to help them deal with personal relationship issues, or calling Sex Workers' Project to talk about options for taking legal action against a club."


Ultimately, what We Are Dancers accomplishes will result from the direction and support they receive from the community. "We don’t really have a plan for what kind of a group we want to form," says Aimee. "We are really open to seeing how it develops and what there is a demand for. It feels more natural and likely for community-building to develop out of providing a useful service or resource."


We Are Dancers, like the National Domestic Workers Alliance, imagines they will be successful through building networks of dancers that reach beyond the boundaries of one workplace. By first focusing on workers' immediate needs, and building power through meeting workers where they are at, We Are Dancers has that same potential to organize so-called "excluded" workers—who are only as excluded as others devalue their work.

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Sound Spanking Order Of The Day - Sub Ellie - PunterPress - Escorts News

Sound Spanking Order Of The Day - Sub Ellie - PunterPress - Escorts News | Escorts |
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Fetish Porn Company Offering Sex Classes in San Francisco - With Porn Stars Providing Live Demos

Fetish Porn Company Offering Sex Classes in San Francisco - With Porn Stars Providing Live Demos | Escorts |

A fetish pornography company in San Francisco is offering sex classes with live demonstrations imparted by porn stars.


Based in the city's famous Armoury building, the weekly workshops are being provided by pornography production company, and designed to cover a plethora of sex topics.


"They [students] have to sit through a lecture before we get to the good stuff. We do techniques, physical response and have a question and answer period before moving on to the demonstrations," explained last week's oral sex professor, porn star Rain DeGrey.


"The workshop series helps us educate people who are interested in exploring their sexuality, but may not know where to start," Kink spokesman Mike Stabile told The Huffington Post.


"We bring in experts and create a safe space for people to learn, ask questions and talk about sex frankly and without judgment."


It is not the first initiative that Kink, currently the largest producer of fetish videos in the world, has cultivated to lure the general public into its transgressive world.


Earlier this year, used deal-of-the-day website Groupon to offer tours of its headquarters, including a visit to its sets, where, "depending on the timing," lucky visitors could also "glimpse a live filming in progress." is also the subject of a documentary produced by Hollywood actor James Franco, who reportedly decided to shoot the movie after failing to shoot a sex tape with his girlfriend.


"I got a video camera and my girlfriend and I decided to film ourselves. We watched it back and said, 'yeah, well, let's never watch that again," Franco told TBS. "Those people in pornos, they are great performers.


"There's this amazing facility in San Francisco. It's at this old armoury and they do everything in house; they build their props in house, so I'm making a documentary about that. It's an incredible place."


The documentary, named Kink, is to premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

Aloha Shikha's comment, December 16, 2012 4:07 AM
oh , good idea
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Paying for sex: Women's groups call for EU-wide ban

Paying for sex: Women's groups call for EU-wide ban | Escorts |

Campaigners say prostitution now needs regulating on an international as well as a national level.


More than 200 women's rights groups are calling for laws to make paying for sex a crime across the European Union.


Campaigners presented key policy recommendations for legislation to MEPs in Brussels on Wednesday.


"Prostitution is a form of violence, an obstacle to gender equality and an open door for organised crime to develop," a campaign spokeswoman told the BBC.


But opponents say the move is likely to drive the prostitution industry further underground.


The European Women's Lobby (EWL), which leads the campaign, wants EU member states to implement six key policies, including the criminalisation of all forms of procuring, and the creation of effective exit programmes for sex workers.


"The most important thing to understand about prostitution is that imposing sexual intercourse with money is a form of violence that shouldn't be accepted," EWL spokeswoman Pierrette Pape told the BBC.


"If we understand that, we can then put comprehensive policies into place that will change mentalities and respect gender equality between women and men."


'No boundaries'

EWL cites Sweden as a successful example, saying that street prostitution had halved there since paying for sex was outlawed a decade ago.


In contrast, there has been no significant improvement of the conditions of sex workers in the Netherlands where the sector has been legalised, Ms Pape said.


She said the issue now needed regulating on an international level, beyond country-specific laws.


"It is a problem that knows no political and geographical boundaries," she said, adding that EU policies on human trafficking would not be effective unless they also addressed prostitution.


"There is a legal base in the treaties to address the transnational crime of the sexual exploitation of women and children."


So far 36 European MEPs are already supporting the proposal, Ms Pape said.


Critics, however, argue that criminalising prostitution also increases the risk of rape and violence.


The UK Network of Sex Work Projects (UNSWP) believes the move would have damaging consequences for prostitutes.


"It creates a legal and policy climate, in which sex workers are more stigmatised and socially excluded, and in which it is harder to offer [them] accessible support services," the organisation told the BBC.

"It erodes sex worker safety and rights. The council of Europe should reject such laws and [instead] support initiatives and legal changes, which improve the social status and safety of sex workers and allow criminal justice authorities to focus their limited resources on violent and other crimes committed against sex workers."


Many sex workers say the sector needs more transparency and better regulation, the BBC's Maddy Savage reports from Brussels.


In the Netherlands, Austria and Germany, prostitutes register their services in return for the same rights and responsibilities as people running other kinds of businesses.


The EU currently does not have the power to legislate on prostitution. But new laws designed to reduce human trafficking are set to come into force next year and EU officials told the BBC both issues are closely linked.


They are currently analysing different countries' approaches and are expected to report back on their findings in 2016.

Matthew West's curator insight, June 5, 2013 3:32 PM

I'm not sure I agree with the argument that "[p]rostitution is a for of violence [...]." It seems that the sex workers and customers enter into a consenting verbal contract -- the payment being the proof of consent. However, I understand that violence can happen during the "services," which I feel is undefendable and appalling.

I totally agree that making prostitution a crime will cause this trade to resort to underground coverage. This would be detrimental to the health to all those involved in the sex-trade as there would be no Health and Human Sevices to treat and contain sexually transmitted diseases.

I also feel it is worth taking into consideration that the sex workers are asking for more regulation of the trade and not prohibition -- this request should be taken into account and not dismissed.  

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New sex trade strategy proposed for single Scottish police force

New sex trade strategy proposed for single Scottish police force | Escorts |

A single strategy on prostitution has been drawn up for dealing with the sex trade under a single Scottish police force.


At the moment different parts of Scotland regulate prostitution in different ways.


The Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland has drawn up a new strategy ahead of the merger of Scotland's eight forces in April.

It includes minimising harm, disrupting organised crime and reducing demand.


Much of the debate around the sex trade has contrasted Edinburgh saunas - believed to be tolerated as part of a "pragmatic" approach by authorities - with an approach in Glasgow which is closer to zero tolerance.


However, in four month's time Scotland's eight police forces will become one, prompting the new strategy from an Acpos working group.


It has a number of aims, including to "minimise the levels and impact of prostitution through reducing or eliminating the harm to sex workers".


The proposals also say "high level objectives" have been set for the working group to meet.


There will still be some regional variations, but Scotpep - a charity based in Edinburgh which advocates on behalf of sex workers - said it was concerned that Glasgow's zero tolerance approach would be forced on the rest of the country.


Scotpep's George Lewis said: "That does concern us, at the moment the largest police force in Scotland has a zero tolerance approach to sex work, and if it's that view that's allowed to prevail we'd be very, very worried about it being extended to the rest of Scotland.


"Particularly when we feel that the police force here in Lothian and Borders has a pragmatic and progressive approach that has given us lots of benefits and advantages."


In Scotland, selling sex is legal between two consenting adults - as long as it does not involve selling sex from the street or in a brothel.

Five years ago, buying sex from street prostitutes, or kerb-crawling, became illegal so clients of street prostitutes now face arrest too.


In Edinburgh, the city council licenses saunas which are commonly thought to allow prostitution on their premises, this differentiates Edinburgh from the rest of the country.


A council spokesperson said: "Any allegation of criminal activity would be a matter for the police to investigate and report to the council."


But the law is also under scrutiny at the Scottish Parliament. A proposed bill is currently out to consultation and the MSP behind it, Rhoda Grant, wants the purchaser of sex to be criminalised.


Until now, the prostitutes have been criminalised more than their clients. The number of women convicted last year under prostitution-related legislation was 117.


A total of 83 men were convicted either for soliciting, kerb crawling or other related offences.

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How sex work has replaced a bar job for some students who struggle to pay bills

Undergraduates have traditionally pulled pints or waited tables to pay their way through university, but a growing body of research suggests that a significant number are now turning to sex work to make ends meet.


The rise in fees which will see some students graduate with projected debts of up to £53,000 at the end of their course is being blamed for persuading young women and men to take up pole dancing, escort work or even prostitution. Experts say that university welfare officers are largely ignorant of the growing phenomenon and poorly equipped to deal with issues arising from young people’s involvement.


Research by Dr Ron Roberts, of the University of Kingston, published in 2010 suggested that one in four students know someone who had worked in the sex industry to fund their studies – up from three per cent in 1990. Dr Roberts found 16 per cent would consider working in the industry while more than one in 10 were open to the idea of being an escort.


Research by Teela Sanders and Kate Hardy, of the University of Leeds, found that a quarter of lap dancers had a degree whilst a third of the women they interviewed were using the job to fund new forms of training.


Much of the expansion over the decade was to do with the proliferation of lap dancing clubs. But the internet also threw up a new range of opportunities for anonymous sex work.


But although the idea of the middle-class sex worker has gained media currency – not least through the highly publicised exploits of Belle de Jour, otherwise known as Dr Brooke Magnanti, a 34-year-old research scientist – the reality can be very different.


In the Leeds study, women reported physical and verbal harassment from customers as they were forced to work in dangerous conditions.

Dr Tracey Sagar, of Swansea University, who is running a three-year project to provide advice and support to student sex workers in Wales, said the authorities were still waking up to the shift in student work patterns.


“Universities are not dealing with this issue. It is not on the radar of welfare or support organisations within education,” she said. The SponsorA site appears to cater to those seeking the so-called “girlfriend” experience where sex can be accompanied by an emotional intimacy. Ms Sagar said that many sex sites flagged up a student’s educational status which was often desirable to potential clients. uses a variety of images of women and glowing testimonials claiming to come from satisfied customers which it is feared could attract young women struggling financially.


The website claims that most of the sponsors are “men between the ages of 28 and 50 who run their own successful business and want to have discreet adventures with a student whilst helping them fund their studies through a scholarship”. It even suggests the amount is tax deductible.


However, opponents say that the unequal power relationship between sex worker and client leaves particularly women open to sexual exploitation whilst safety groups have warned women against going off with people they do not know.



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A Regressive Move Which Would Further Stigmatise and Endanger Sex Workers

Last week Rhoda Grant MSP and Lord Morrow were invited to speak about their respective proposals to criminalise the purchase of sex in Scotland and Northern Ireland at an event in the House of Commons tellingly entitled 'Prostitution and Sexual Exploitation: Tackling Demand in the UK'.


These proposals represent a radical change to the criminal law in this area and, if passed, would have severe consequences for sex workers. They are not supported by public opinion, academic evidence, sex workers themselves or by the majority of those delivering front-line support to sex workers...

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