It seems folks like Portman and Cruz won't rest until sex workers—and sex trafficking victims—are forced back out onto the streets and the social web as we know it is destroyed. But the only thing this grandstanding gesture might help is their political careers. Victims of sexual exploitation won't be one iota safer when lawmakers shut down Backpage.
And they won't stop at Backpage. Read the whole thing here. We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. If they have any proof that there is real-life trafficking going on I'm opposed to the concept of somebody selling a product or service being liable if it the product or service is used illegally.
It's as asinine as holding phone companies liable if somebody sells drugs using phones. Not to mention holding car companies liable if a car is used to facilitate drunk driving.. We already do this with guns. Why not the web? What could possibly go wrong? And the Democrats love it because the can get on the bandwagon too without seeming like they're prudes. Yeah, that's exactly right. The new morality police have expanded the definition of sex trafficking to include all manner of voluntary sex work.
That's really what the attack on backpage was about - not actual sex trafficking. Of course, this violates basic individual rights and freedoms while also damaging all involved.
It drives the industry underground thereby making it unsafe in many ways. When taken together with the campus crusade to redefine consensual sexual activity as rape when explicit verbal consent is lacking, alcohol is involved or later female regret occurs , there seems to be a disturbing puritanical wave sweeping the country.
You could also add in the apparent war on any and all teen sexuality. We're both hypersexualized and besieged by puritanical nazis at the same time. It's an inherently moral outrage.
It will always be that, and they will continue to dress it up however they can to continue that outrage. Prison industrial police complex needs a new crime if peddling herbs is gonna be legal in most states. Too bad they didn't add an "i" for "Internet" between "Stop" and "Enabling" though How did they miss mentioning the Internet in the title of the bill? I was thinking that, since the "X" in the word "sex" is what somehow draws the eye, and not the "s", the acronym becomes the SEXT act.
That's not quite what this law is about? Especially the children between 18 and 21 who want to make a few bucks to pay for health insurance. For a few decades, it was the general consensus that the 'White Slavery' panics that cycled through the late Victorian, Edwardian, and between-the-Wars periods were founded on the fears of Middle Class women that if men could buy sex they wouldn't tolerate the pushing around they were getting from their wives.
I notice that this is being retconned to fit with current "Sex Trafficking" sensibilities On that basis, let me be the first outside the pages of erotic fiction to come flat out and say that I am in favor of sex trafficking. In fact, if the way Western women have carried on for the last several decades is an example of what happens when they are treated as equals, I will call for universal female chattel slavery.
Since it seems that the only way to get them to stop spouting statist bullshit is to insert a ball-gag. I anxiously await the anti-sex robot bills that will pass when those hit anything resembling a critical mass. Say "no" to what? Lots of them do.
Anti-male bias in court? Very few men rape, no matter what one's Womyn's Studies Prof may claim. Sorry, not built that way. Take it up with the designer.
The ones behind the campaigns to end "bikini baristas" or "massage parlors" are always triple-chinned suburban minivan moms spilling out over their typical uniform of stretch pants and giant T-shirts.
Backpage "does not deny that its site is used for criminal activity, including the sale of children for sex," the report says.
Rather, the company argues it just hosts content created by others and is thus immune from liability under the U. But the inquiry found that Backpage systematically edited its adult ads, scrubbing them of terms such as "teenage," "little girl" and "rape" before posting them. Pressure on the company is coming from many sides. Backpage is the subject of a searing new U. The film follows the legal battle that several mothers are fighting on behalf of their teenage daughters, who were trafficked and advertised on the site.
In , major credit-card companies stopped allowing their cards to be used to purchase Backpage adult ads, citing concerns about the trafficking of minors. Bitcoin is used instead. In Canada, some police see the site as a useful tool in their investigations.
If the site were shut down in Canada, "I'm sure something else would pop up within a few weeks, but then we'd be behind the eight ball trying to catch up again. Police in Ontario say Backpage is a key place where underage girls are advertised. Those in Calgary and Edmonton, however, say those types of ads are more likely to appear on free social-media sites such as Tinder.
Even if the site were more regulated or shut down, some say that would not address the root of the problem, which is the demand for these services. Nor would it change the broader issues that make children more vulnerable, such as homelessness or addiction. When the girls listed on the site are underage, Det. Hay says, odds are they have a pimp. He estimates that of all the escort ads on Backpage in his city, at least 25 per cent of the girls and women are being trafficked.
Some of these girls that we've come across haven't eaten in days, haven't slept in days, don't know what city they're in … have been beaten, abused," Det. I've been a police officer for 17 years, and this is something — I can't even wrap my head around it some days. It's a really horrible crime. Megan Walker, executive director of the London Abused Women's Centre, regularly receives calls from family members who are searching for their missing daughters — and using Backpage to see whether they're still alive.
She estimates that about 60 per cent of the people her centre speaks with are tracking their daughters through Backpage. She thinks more enforcement is needed to tackle the demand side of the crime — the johns and pimps — and that Backpage ought to be shut down. Trafficking across Canada is a huge issue impacting women and girls in our communities," she said. In an e-mail, Public Safety Canada said the government "takes very seriously" any potential tools used to facilitate the trafficking of children for the purpose of sexual exploitation.
Barbara Gosse, chief executive officer of the Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking, said "people need to know that in Canada you can not buy sex from a juvenile. It is child abuse. We need to start using the right language. There is no such thing as child prostitution — it is strictly child abuse. In February, the Toronto Police Service's sex-crimes unit announced an arrest in a human-trafficking investigation.
The release offers a window into how sex trafficking works. The allegations, which have not been proved in court, are as follows: In October, , a year-old girl was recruited and procured into the sex trade by a man.
She was coerced into the trade with the promise of earning a lot of money. In this time, the man controlled the girl through threats and intimidation. The girl was taken to various hotels in Toronto, "where the man took photographs of her in various stages of undress and posted them on Backpage. In November, she tried to flee. The man found the girl, stripped her of all her clothing and assaulted her. Eventually, she was able to escape and reported the incident to police.
The accused now faces 12 charges, including trafficking in persons under the age of We have closed comments on this story for legal reasons or for abuse. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.
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Hook up mascot escortIf none of these were helpful, please use the Daily Random Discussion Thread . tl;dr Don't waste your time on Craigslist, Locanto, Backpage. 7 Aug As it stands, cops are already chasing down prostitution and sex trafficking cases that originate on Facebook, Snapchat, random dating apps. 5 Aug The measure is being sold as a way to shut down Backpage, including getskilled.eu, The Review Board, and the gay escort site getskilled.eu . and sex trafficking cases that originate on Facebook, Snapchat, random.
A Motherboard article verified this move:. This action caused a ripple effect. Countries, where prostitution is legal, felt the repercussions.
This was especially true in Australia. This underground railroad of workers has brought with it a chain of negative repercussions.
Sex workers and prostitutes now rely on roaming the streets, discovering pimps, risking their life with random clients, or taking their chances using the dark web to promote their business. When they had more direct and public access to their clientele online, there was less risk involved. In response to government and central credit card holders thwarting their business, sex workers have also turned to Bitcoin to fund their activities.
This consequence of government action on the sex trade has been referred to as the Backpage Effect. It is true that bitcoin is not fully anonymous, but it has allowed for quasi-concealed payments in the sex trade. It has indeed helped protect the sex workers and maintain some semblance of privacy.
Additionally, credit card industries have also affected the legal sex conglomerates in the U. These industries have also started using Bitcoin. For example, the adult firm Naughty America has teamed up with Descent in order to make transactions much easier with less legal risk. The industries have turned to cryptocurrency, namely bitcoin, because it is not centrally controlled, and a central institution like a creditor cannot shut down the transactions.
The sex business retains control over their funds regardless. With no central bank or embarrassing payment processing trail for authorities to follow, bitcoin provides the ultimate financial anonymity. It has caused Bitcoin to become a force in the sensual markets. It feels dirty passing cash at the end of our time together. Not to mention, the semi-anonymous nature of Bitcoin keeps most sex workers safe from law enforcement. In an economic ecosystem where governments crush businesses that leverage online resources that make the sex industry safer, the natural fallout is for escorts and prostitutes to scamper underground and use new methods of payment.
Cryptocurrency, especially Bitcoin, has thus become a staple. Lagrange Ars Praefectus Registered: Politicians can't stand the idea of someone taking away their title of "Biggest Whores In America". When you've spent your entire career prostituting yourself to big business and rich donors, you don't want any competition taking away your business. Jul 24, Posts: While I'm sure that's true, BP is in fact not shut down at all, and all the prostitution ads are still there.
The only thing removed were the categories. Seriously, it's all still there. But as for the shutting down bit, thats more of an inference from me considering what the site's traffic is most known for and the quote within the article.
But yeah, I guess theres still a chance of BP staying online if the owners choose to stay in the market. I'm always happy to be wrong whenever I yell doom and gloom from the mountaintop Edit: Also idk what happened with these nested quotes but I'm not replying to myself despite what it looks like.
Oct 8, Posts: If X, then Y, where Y is a random value? I will be so glad when we can primary her out in She is better than the GOP alternative, but not by much. Dec 8, Posts: Like Russia investigation, am I right? The whole thing was brought up after Trump won, seems like a validation of sore losers feeling?
Why the 'powers that be' can't see fit to use a site like Backpage. Once you have decided something is immoral you apparently have an obligation to make it as dangerous as possible. Pre-marital sex is bad so therefore you need to be against birth control. You also need to be against HPV vaccinations. Prostitution is immoral so you need to be against anything which might make it safer, like letting prostitutes and johns have rating web sites so they can make safer choices about who to do business with.
Drugs are immoral so you need to be against needle exchanges. Some might consider advocating for polices which increase sickness, suffering or death to be immoral. But that's because you aren't a truly moral person. Anything which increases the suffering of immoral people is in fact moral.
On top of that, these idiots are effectively voting to put up their own taxes and increase their healthcare costs which you can be sure they would campaign against if anyone else dared to do it. Instead of spending a few dollars a month giving clean needles to a heroin user, these people would rather prevent them from accessing harm reduction services so they end up in the ER one day and incur tens of thousands of dollars of hospital bills that have to be paid by everyone else.
Even without the moral angle, it's a dumb policy that helps no-one. The Judge in the California case utterly destroyed this allegation. The evidence is so utterly weak that he ruled even if the entirety of what the state said happened, happened it was not a crime. Golgo1 Ars Tribunus Militum Registered: Apr 9, Posts: I agree with the tone and content of your post, but for clarity I have to ask Are you trying to imply that public urination is a silly law?
Because yes, the others really are Should we be Free to Pee? Mar 9, Posts: May 27, Posts: May 17, Posts: Well that brings up my belief that if the only justification for a policy is your religion there is a very good chance it's simply a bad policy which is going to make life worse for at least some people if not everybody. Insightfill Smack-Fu Master, in training Registered: May 10, Posts: Not any couch you'd want to sit on without a thick layer of plastic on it.
Search Engines are designed to show you what you are looking for. Nobody cares about the women they claim to be protecting. Otherwise there would be a broader, and serious debate on the issue of prostitution. This is just another way to "look busy", and be able to say at election time "look, I saved you from the prostitutes. I was tough on crime and immorality. It is astounding the amount of energy that has been spent on this effort, instead of things that could actually help women like shelters, vocational training, and de-criminalization.
Sep 27, Posts: In France, a burkha is indecent coverage. So probably somewhere in between. There is also politics or ideology as a significant driving force behind a push for these kind of laws. The surprisingly draconian laws on prostitution in Sweden weren't coming from the religious right, but it is the same story of a group of people who think they know better than everyone else and want to impose their morality.
It's one thing to try and protect people from exploitation but that's often a smokescreen for a desire to prevent anyone taking part in activities or professions they don't approve of. Jan 6, Posts: The problem is that you've bought into the tactics that were used in exactly the way that was intended by those who used them.
It was never actually shown that Backpage was facilitating prostitution in court and certainly not that they'd been doing so for underage prostitution, and the courts actually found against those claims.
Problem is, the politicians involved here disapprove of Backpage in general , regardless of whether or not the adult services we're discussing were legal ie. Now, I don't know if the senators' allegations are true. Maybe they are, but I don't think it's especially relevant. What's at issue here is that it's for the courts to determine that, not for the senators themselves to use investigatory powers intended to help them craft legislation specifically to sidestep those courts and directly attack the company.
They don't need proof, just that accusation. And if the accusation is you're doing it from a pizza parlor's non-existent basement, it can even be a rumor spread by third parties. Los Angeles, CA Registered: Dec 22, Posts: Just admit it, just because you call an "escort service" instead of contacting them on CraigsList doesn't mean you aren't hypocrites. It's not that they can't afford a domain, it's because they don't have the technical savvy and, seriously, do they need their own domain?
It's not as if anyone is going to go visit it directly in most cases. I wish they would all go there, then those interested in using their services could go there and leave the rest of us in peace.
Mar 1, Posts: There is a reason good escorts and well off Johns rarely get picked up by police. Because the first rule is you never talk money, show it or the like. You should know the cost. You go in, you do your business, the girl goes to the bathroom, you get up get dressed and leave a n envelope with the proper amount in cash plus a tip on the nightstand and leave.
No evidence of prostitution or the like, and if you try to screw them by not leaving the dough they will find you and hurt you. No on the p I don't look very often, only when bored. I have been hit with the verified locals scam on tinder. As soon as they say "credit card" I block them. Google image search is also great. It is amazing how many escorts and massage offerings have their pictures plastered all over porn sites.
Though that is more of a fake dating site thing than Backpage. Feb 17, Posts: Jan 30, Posts: Well if the shoe fits Red high heels represent passion pretty much universally. Bad tattoo on top of foot and visibly shown shows bad life choices and daddy issues though I generally associate it with strippers than hookers. Note I am not dissing tattoos here, I love them especially the tastefully done ones or the sleeves that show so much creativity.
But really that tattoo in the picture is pretty trashy, just maybe one step up from a tramp stamp. Oct 10, Posts: It's not that they hate it, rather it's something they simply view as suitable for them but not us.
Aug 7, Posts: Wait, do you mean selling a couch or "selling a couch" - that's a pretty big difference you know Either way can get you bugs.