There is also a great deal of hypocrisy when it comes to the laws of prostitution. Consider this situation: A man pays a woman $500 to have sex with him. This would be deemed illegal in the United States. But now suppose he still pays her $500 to have sex with him, but sets up a camera, films the act and then posts the video on the Internet. This is entirely legal — in fact, he is an entrepreneur in the $3.9 billion pornography industry.
Or, consider another example from the modern dating scene: Suppose a man isn’t looking for a girlfriend, a friend or any sort of company for that matter. He simply wants someone to have sex with without forming a connection or attachment. What does he do? The man will likely meet an attractive, but perhaps vulnerable woman and convince her he is interested, lie to her and take her out to dinner a couple of times. But once he finally gets her into bed, he never calls her again. This leaves the woman feeling used and hurt. In effect, the woman has been exploited, as she decided to have sex for a man who left her with the false promise of a relationship. At least a prostitute is fully aware of what she is getting herself into.
Here’s a little something many of us dread – webcam meetings. It’s one thing to chat with friends and family using Skype or Google Hangouts, but it’s another thing completely to try to look good and maintain a professional image for a webcam meeting.
"While there may always have been some incidental student presence in the industry... there can be little doubt that the growing impoverishment of the student population has [coincided] with a growth in the number of student sex workers."
For those that saw me at the conference, you most likely were handed a card about my new project, AIT Research, which has been about 2 years in the making and has finally come to fruition. This was originally a partnership between myself and a few activist friends who wanted to develop our own nationwide research survey on human trafficking in the sex trades. Since then, one of our original partners has dropped out of the project, but along with SWOP-Michigan’s Crysta Heart, we’ve created a platform to promote and develop sex worker led research that we hope will uncover some “truths” about our industry, as opposed to much of the biased research about the industry that comes from outsiders.
Our first AIT research project, The Erotic Labor Market Survey, or “ELMS” focuses on human trafficking in the various erotic labor/sex industries and was launched last week. With this survey, we hope to gain more accurate stats on how often trafficking occurs in the industry and whether or not workers, clients, and staff of industry establishments are properly educated on how to respond to trafficking situations when they are confronted with them. This project was our own direct response to the trafficking PSA that we created in 2012. One of the conversations that came out the the writing process of that video was that we create a survey for not just sex workers, but for clients and other industry personnel (staff at strip clubs/escort services/porn companies, etc.) on whether or not the can identify a trafficking victim and how they would respond if they did come across one. As we stated in that video, WE are the ones most likely to come into contact with individuals in coercive situations, yet because of the wall between us and most anti-trafficking organizations and efforts, there is little knowledge and education being done about what to do about it.
"It's absurd that sex workers don't have more protection, and their reputation suffers from the victimization. Jasmine suffered from the reputation and from someone spreading lies about her," explained Jacobsson, who had professional ties with Jasmine through Rose Alliance, where the mother of two was a board member.
Jasmine told her colleagues in the Rose Alliance that the district court took away her children because she "romanticized sex work" and that it deemed her an unfit parent. Social services received a tip-off suggesting the she was using drugs and drinking in front of her children. There were even suggestions that the 27-year-old was working from home, Jacobsson told The Local.
"This couldn't be further from the truth. For one thing, she hardly touched alcohol, but also, she was an upper-class sex worker. She would be coming into Stockholm from Västerås to luxury hotels, just once or twice a week, for a fee of around 4,000 kronor ($610) per hour," she added.
"She was doing it all for her kids. And she enjoyed doing it. You tell me another job where a mother can earn 6,000 or 7,000 kronor a week and still remain a stay-at-home mum."
On July 16, 2013, Tumblr creator David Karp was on The Colbert Report. During the short interview segment, Karp and host Stephen Colbert discussed a number of issues ~ including the naked, and sometimes fornicating, elephant in the room: porn on Tumblr.
But then, just two days later, Tumblr instituted a new policy about adult content. Along with the pre-Yahoo sale attempts to exclude search engine indexing of adult Tumblr bogs, Tumblr’s new rules meant that adult-rated blogs and their posts would no longer show up in site tags; the former preventing blogs from being found off-site, the latter keeping blogs from being searched and found on Tumblr itself.
Obviously, this lead to quite the reaction from Tumblr users.
Gracie Passette's insight:
What's behind all the changes? (Hint: It smells like money!) Can you trust Karp & Tumblr? (That may depend upon a few things.)
Getting rejected and abandoned is no fun. But even more seriously, if it looks like a relationship is about to end, most escorts will begin to worry that their former partner may reveal her secret life to family and friends or report her to the authorities. Living double lives as most escorts do, often leads to a profound sense of isolation.
Family members and even close friends are not good sources of emotional support either. Most don't know the truth about an escort's life and work or they hold that truth in contempt. At best, they may tolerate what an escort does in hopes that she will come to her senses someday. But this isn't a safe place to take feelings and fears. Instead, escorts can become increasingly solitary. All too often it seems the clients of escorts are the only source of love and respect which an escort can count on.
Our society turns a blind eye to the murder of sex workers, deeming them less than human. Why is that?
...Twenty years ago I first asked two questions that continue to unsettle me today. The first is answerable: What does a woman who sells sex accomplish that leads to her being treated as fallen, beyond the pale, incapable of speaking for herself, discountable if she does speak, invisible as a member of society? The answer is she carries a stigma. The second question is a corollary: Why do most public conversations focus on laws and regulations aimed at controlling these stigmatized women rather than recognizing their agency? To that the answer is not so straightforward.
She was known to her friends as the go-to person to prepare their income taxes. But 72-year-old Janina Wrigglesworth also had another occupation that involved an entirely different set of clientele.
Even in the months before she was killed, Wrigglesworth was involved in the sex industry, known to her customers by several names. One man knew her as Linda. A classified advertisement for massage services, posted in April of this year, carried her phone number and identified her as Diana.
Gracie Passette's insight:
This just makes me ache too:
A man who saw her regularly over the past year after finding her number in a classified ad, came to her apartment Tuesday, only to discover she had died.
“I used to call her and say I wanted to see her and she said, ‘Okay, come here, no problem.’ She would talk to me,” said the 72-year-old man, who declined to give his name because he didn’t want his family to know he’d been there.
In both legal and illegal form, the sex industry is present in every state in the country. Yet, it is only in Nevada that sex industry is legalized in the form of brothel prostitution. While prostitution is illegal in Las Vegas, the city is internationally recognized as a highly sexualized tourist destination with a flourishing market in commercial sexual entertainment and services.
If the Nevada sex industry affects the state’s social health and its quality of life, it doesn’t do so in a uniform, easy-to-judge manner. The growth of the sex industry or pornoculture in the Silver State has a negative impact where it condones exploitation, oppression, crime, and continued stereotyping and stigmatization of women. The abundance of sexually charged entertainment can have a positive impact when sex workers have a range of viable economic options, when they are not forced into commercial sex against their will, and when Nevada’s tourism-based economy cultivates arenas of safe sexual expression and enjoyment.
There is little reason to think that the broader trends toward more sexualized everyday culture will play out differently in Nevada than in other parts of the country and the world. Las Vegas is likely to remain at the forefront of these cultural shifts and will continue to benefit economically from the current trends. This presents a significant opportunity for Nevada to move to the forefront of the national debate about these cultural trends, and to take the lead as an innovator in policies, programs, and practices that confront head-on the dangers and pitfalls associated with a growing, and most likely inevitable, sex industry in ways that minimize risk and exploitation and maximize safety and empowerment.
Gracie Passette's insight:
An intelligent & pragmatic discussion about the sex industry in terms of society & public policy.
(APN) ATLANTA -- After opposition from progressive activists, Mayor Kasim Reed agreed to pull a proposal to banish prostitutes from certain parts of the City of Atlanta, known as the Stay Out of Areas of Prostitution (SOAP) ordinance.
Now, a work group of stakeholders including a contingent of activists, convened by the City of Atlanta, is holding meetings to discuss various alternatives to banishment that would address prostitution in Atlanta.