This story has been building for the past year but only now do I feel free to talk about it. It’s not pretty and will likely make men uncomfortable. Never fear — if you don’t harm women, then don’t identify with Michael Meisenbach.
From Laura Agustin’s Twitter: â€œYou are living in the kind of world in which there are digital harems of prostitutes, available and pushed upon every single population”
It wouldn’t be much fun to push unavailable prostitutes on every single population, now would it? “Every single population” is not defined and I wish it were. There are so many populations that prostitutes aren’t interested in (children, prison inmates, the sick, the homeless, Congress).
Laura has a series of Tweets exploring the zealous anti-prostitution rhetoric and its very creative usage of language. I would have never come up “digital harems” no matter how long I write about sex work (yes, I’m jealous). Even better, the sermon she quotes was delivered by a preacher in Ft. Worth! Eros Dallas has a new slogan in the bag.
I missed this on Twitter but really enjoyed the recap. Sex workers discuss the concept of giving it away with the same arguments tossed at us because we charge for it. While people can always say “It’s smart to charge for it,” when have you ever heard someone say “It’s smart to give it away.” An entire self-help genre is built on the very idea of not giving it away! These books encourage women to hold out for something, whether it’s a wedding ring, gifts or whatever. But the end result is always offering sex in exchange for something the woman wants. Technically, that’s not giving it away! Which begs the question, is there anyone who really gives it away? Or are they just deluded? Is “giving it away” actually part of the old joke to which the punchline is “Now we’re just negotiating on price.”
If you haven’t heard, two activists have come together with the help of DePaul University to create the first sex worker-run survey of sex work. This is an academically-reviewed study and they plan to publish the results in academic journals as well as mainstream media. Serpent Libertine and Crysta Heart are friends of mine as both activists and sex workers. I’m extremely pleased of their efforts against the anti-sex trafficking agenda. It’s not an easy feat to get a university behind a project run by sex workers. (Maybe one day they’ll tell us how they did it?)
The website — AdultIndustryTruth.com — is full of information about the survey, which runs through July 2014. The survey is open to anyone who works with sex in the US. The website and survey is engineered for anonymity and safety.
This particular survey concerns the issue of consent and coercion. This is truly the gap that separates sex work from sex trafficking (and something I’ve discussed in real life with others). Consent makes the difference to sex workers and their experiences; it should make the difference in policy but unfortunately, it currently does not. The AIT survey aims to help illustrate that difference.
As a sex worker who has chafed at the attention people like Melissa Farley get with their “research”, I’m thrilled to see sound research accomplished by sex workers. Nothing about us without us gaining a small foothold in the US.
Follow the button below to take the survey, feel free to repost this information anywhere you can. The larger the results, the more accurate the information will be.
Okay, this is clearly not a news blog. Back in January, rumors swirled that Lindsay Lohan’s mom was selling expensive dates with her daughter. Her father said it wasn’t true, then said it wasn’t wasn’t true. Who really knows?
I just like the idea of a celebrity paying the bills the old-fashioned way. If she really is a paid companion, then it would be so wonderful for her to speak up about it. Come out and proud! On the other hand, she has substance abuse problems and an arrest record. Okay, maybe she’s not the best choice for celebrity sex work spokesperson.
If her mom is pimping her out, call Donna Hughes or Melissa Farley. Quick!
This is a very quick post. I’m sure I’ll think of better things to say this weekend.
a little background
After Craigslist fell, everyone’s attention turned to Backpage. The attention cranked up but Backpage wasn’t saying much, however it instituted new advertising policies that just got in the way of adult sex workers advertising there.
The point of intersection came with the Superbowl in Dallas and the hordes of underage girls being trafficked into the city. Like, so many of them every single hotel in the metroplex would’ve been booked solid with working girls under the age of 18. The Dallas Observer, part of Village Voice Media, made much of the non-event that was the Superbowl (not including the ice storm — which was an event).
Meanwhile, over on the West Coast, Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore, along with assorted other female celebrities, have been braying about the problem of child sex trafficking in the US. They’ve been raising millions, attempting to influence legislation and are making a lot of noise about this huge “problem” that even they admit has no solid numbers.
The Village Voice ran a story making fun of Ashton’s “Real Men Don’t Buy Girls” campaign and questioning the numbers of underage trafficking victims. Ashton took offense and started a Twitter war. He has a scary number of followers who are not sex workers yet consider themselves experts on underage trafficking because they follow his Tweets. Um, yeah.