There is a land grab going on in Soho under the banner of morality.
That night, while Stephen Ward [in Andrew Lloyd Webber's new musical of that name] was bowing to an entranced audience, 200 of our boys in blue raided more than 20 models' flats, arresting 30 girls and confiscating their earnings. ... They broke down doors, intimidated girls into accepting cautions (ie criminal records) and served civil-eviction papers that, unless you were a lawyer, you would not know had hidden in their depths (20-odd pages) the time and date you were to appear in court if you wanted to appeal.
Rupert Everett in defence of Soho's working girls.
posted by Grangousier
on Jan 19, 2014 -
Don't believe France's reputation as a country where sexual peccadillos are always overlooked. After a vote by the country's National Assembly on Wednesday, it has just joined a growing group of European nations where buying sex is now illegal. France is not alone in its fresh efforts to curb prostitution. The move follows similar bans in Sweden and Norway, while other European countries are also scaling back laissez-faire prostitution policies. Germany is poised to change its liberal sex trade laws, while Ireland is also debating a measure similar to France's. Is the end of legal prostitution in Europe in sight?
(Don't miss the deep and interesting links found within the article.) [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb
on Dec 8, 2013 -
The Sarasota Herald-Tribune newspaper published a special project recently: The Stolen Ones
investigates the local child sex trafficking industry, and documents stories from survivors and their families. (SFW, but some readers may find the content disturbing.) [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Oct 25, 2013 -
The Walk Free Foundation
has released its latest report on the contemporary slave trade, the Global Slavery Index
(interactive map). As summarized
by Al Jazeera, over 29 million people are in some form of involuntary servitude, ranging from kidnapped fishermen to women forced into prostitution to child brides. The countries with the largest populations of enslaved people include Mauritania
, and Nepal
. Back in 2012, J. J. Gould wrote
on the difficulties in confronting slavery in today's society: In the West, and particularly in the United States, slavery has long settled in the public imagination as being categorically a thing of the past.... It can mean having a harder time recognizing slavery when it's right in front of us.
posted by Cash4Lead
on Oct 17, 2013 -
In 1971, the newly-created US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hired a bunch of freelance photographers to collectively document environmental issues around the country. They were given free rein to shoot whatever they wanted, and the project, named Documerica
, lasted through 1977. After 40 years, the EPA is now encouraging photographers to take current versions of the original Documerica photos and are showcasing them on flickr at State of the Environment
. There are location challenges
, and a set has been created with some of the submissions, making side-by-side comparisons
. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Aug 8, 2013 -
In a quiet cafe outside San Francisco,
"Josephine" -- a local prostitute -- arranges a collection of t-shirts across the table. They're emblazoned with phrases like "Winter is Coming" and "Geeks Make Better Lovers." She wears them in her online ads to catch the eye of the area's well-off engineers and programmers.
posted by bookman117
on Apr 15, 2013 -
Since the 80s
Tony Galeota managed Porky's, a Hialeah dive notorious
for drugs, prostitution, and violence, where he was part pimp, part bouncer, and completely untouchable
. When he left to open a bona fide brothel in Panama, Galeota thought the country's lax prostitution laws
(NSFW) would make him rich. Instead, he's trapped in a labyrinthine legal system, alone and unable to speak Spanish.
posted by Potomac Avenue
on Oct 7, 2012 -
"A statistical summary of women in prostitution is a chronicle of human wreckage—economic, physical, and chemical." GQ magazine's three-part investigation into the global sex trade is fascinating, if horrifying, reading: Part 1
(on sex clubs in the Phillipines), Part 2
(on human trafficking in Moldova), Part 3
(on sex tourism in Costa Rica).
posted by Catseye
on Dec 11, 2011 -
"In the last few years, the rise of free online porn — content-rich sites that tease viewers to subscribe for more — and pay-site juggernauts like Brazzers have put the L.A.-based adult-video industry against the ropes. Its answer, in part, has been the high-dollar parody, designed to attract ComicCon nerds, science fiction fans and other pop culture aficionados who must collect everything within their target oeuvre." -- The troubled US economy affects pornstars too, so "Porn Defends The Money Shot"
(NSFW) [more inside]
posted by bardic
on Sep 29, 2011 -
's autobiographical works such as I Never Liked You (1.3 MB PDF)
placed #38 on The Comics Journal
of the 100 Best Comics of the 20th Century. In his new graphic novel, Paying For It
, he "calmly lays out the facts of how he became not only a willing participant in but also a vocal proponent of one of the world's most hot-button topics--prostitution
posted by Trurl
on May 16, 2011 -
Since the fur-coated Boot Girls’ particular services were suggested by the iridescent colors of their calf-length, patent-leather boots and shoelaces, suitors had to be intimately familiar with their semaphore-like advertising before accompanying them to nearby apartments. Naturally, only devoted aficionados could decipher such specific messages with confidence. Other potential clients had to buy special primers, where Berlin’s complex street semiotics were thoughtfully decoded for the uninitiated.
- Sex tourism in Berlin
during the Jazz Age, along with some illustrations
from the period.
(Racy rather than obscene, but somewhat NSFW)
posted by Slap*Happy
on Mar 24, 2011 -
Devadasi are women in southeastern India who were dedicated in their youth to the goddess Yellamma. When they reach puberty they are forced into sex work. Once they were women of high status, but now they've been relegated to the outskirts of society. The devadasi practice goes back a long way in history, and was once celebrated in poetry. When God Is a Customer
, a collection of translated classical Telugu poems about the devadasi, is free to read online. Their modern life is described by William Dalrymple in The New Yorker
and in a video interview with filmmaker Beeban Kidron
which includes clips from her documentary Sex, Death and the Gods. The devadasi have been targeted by exploitative Western media for a long time, but have recently started to hit back
, using the internet
to disseminate their views.
posted by Kattullus
on Jan 22, 2011 -
[Warning: some links NSFW
] Callgirl and blogger Alexa DiCarlo had some questions raised about her authenticity dating back to 2008
, but her website RealPrincessDiaries.com (archive.org cache
) still attracted huge traffic and she was even named the #1 sex blogger of 2010
. A student at SFSU's master's degree program in sexuality studies
, she also volunteered her time providing sex education advice to teenagers online under the name Caitlain or Cathy. And she mentored newbie sex workers via e-mail, giving them pro tips and even sharing with them one of her top clients, Matt, whose identity and safety she vouched for.
But in true Kaycee Nicole
/ JT LeRoy
style, it now turns out there wasn't
any "Alexa", "Caitlain", or "Cathy". Outed by the anonymous blog Expose A Bro
, combined with the anonymous twitter account @ExposingAlexa
, the real story has emerged. Alexa was apparently a married middle-aged guy named Pat, not a student at SFSU, had no formal training from which to be sharing "advice" (or naked photos!) with those teenagers online, and he was the "client"
that "Alexa" had sent to her protégées to sleep with... [more inside]
posted by Asparagirl
on Nov 22, 2010 -
video of interviews with residents of a home for elderly prostitutes in Mexico's senior-citizen sex-worker capital. (via
posted by prefpara
on Mar 22, 2010 -
Confessions of a Call Bear
- "At 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, he's a pretty big guy, though he "carries it well." His red hair is cut in a flattop, and he has a closely cropped beard, but he doesn't look particularly imposing." Rusty McMann is a 40something male escort.
posted by desjardins
on Mar 11, 2010 -
Dallas police were skeptical at first, nicknaming the program "Hug-a-Ho."
Two years later, the STAR Court
("strengthening, transition and recovery") is attracting attention from agencies and researchers nationwide, for its innovative approach to prostitute diversion.
"It's absolutely apparent when you work with these women that they're struggling with incredible issues of domestic violence, substance abuse, sexual violence. We want to help these women change their lives, and if we want to change what's happening, we have to change our approach."
posted by pineapple
on Jan 28, 2010 -
Sex Worker Literati is a monthly storytelling series that features sex workers, former sex workers, and people with stories about the sex industry who read, monologue, perform, and shimmy their ways into your hearts, minds, and naughty bits.
(NSFW video feed) [more inside]
posted by hippybear
on Jan 20, 2010 -
An interview with the first male gigolo of the Shady Lady Ranch
I think for a male, if you want to be successful in this type of venture, you're not a prostitute. You're a surrogate lover. You encompass everything that's required of you—not only emotionally, physically—but psychologically. Because women are wired differently. They're much more sensitive creatures. You actually have to enjoy what you do. You can't necessarily say, "Oh, it's just a job." You actually have to say it's a passion.
Background: Nevada has legalized male prostitution
posted by andoatnp
on Jan 14, 2010 -