Legal Woes Force Backpage Adult Services Closure: The Urban Twist
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Backpage Shuts Down Its Adult Services Section Citing Government Censorship As Reason.

Those who logged in to Backpage today looking for some adult fun found “censored” on the adult services section and a message explaining why it was removed.

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The internet got very interesting today when Backpage decided to shut down their adult section, claiming government censure.  For those unfamiliar with the  very popular  website, like craigslist, it’s a marketplace. Also like Craigslist used to have, Backpage has  had a very active  adult  section where people traded and sold services that weren’t exactly legal.


Over the years, without any real advertisement, Backpage  became  the  go to place  to find a woman, no matter what  city or state you were in. Coming from the  adult entertainment industry myself, I  have personally known many women  who have used  Backpage as a place to meet men and make money. Until today, I had never even  been on the site, terrified that my IP address would be recorded and I might fall into the  cache of women being  watched by the federal government.

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backpage

 

There’s little chance that  the  actions of these women and  their  “clients” have not been tracked and documented. The federal government has had an eye on  Backpage and its adult services since Craigslist shut down their adult  section in 2010 after multiple prostitutes had been killed by Phillip Markoff who was dubbed the “Craigslist Killer.”

Craigslist  had  been constantly fighting off government interference for years before they  finally shut the  adult services section  down . The states attorney general and human  trafficking  groups had repeated complaints about the  adult services  section of the  site which led to congressional hearings  being  held. When Craigslist shut down the adult services section many people immediately  logged on to Backpage and  kept  moving along as if nothing happened. When Craigslist first removed the adult services section it replaced it  with the word “censored” just as Backpage did.

 

Those who logged in to  Backpage today looking for an afternoon quickie or  someone to set up a date with later tonight found the  word “censored” beneath the  categories for escorts, body rubs and  other  services listed under adult services. If they thought  censored meant that they would have to  go through an age verification process or something they found out immediately from clicking any  category that the next page  showed the following message:

CENSORED

The government has unconstitutionally censored this content. What happened? Find out

Protect internet free speech. Visit Center for Democracy and Technology, Electronic Frontier Foundation, and Cato Institute.

Use your social media to support #FREESPEECH #BACKPAGE

Donate to Children of the Night, an organization dedicated to rescuing children from prostitution.

 

In a statement released today Backpage asserts that the adult section was closed as a result of years long of interference by the federal government.  The maintains that it has  worked diligently  with  state ad federal  officers to  aide in capture of those who have used the  site for human trafficking and notes that  closing  down their  adult services section will not stop the  problem of human  trafficking in  America.

Read the  whole statement  from Backpage 

Backpage shut down their adult services right before the sites founders Michael Lacey and James Larkin, CEO, Carl Ferrer are set to  testify before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs’ subcommittee on investigations.

The committee has reviewed more than 1.1-million pages of documents subpoenaed from Backpage, Monday the  senate committee issue a 53-page report on its finding. and revealing that the site knowingly facilitated prostitution and child sex trafficking. Before it moved to this drastic measure of  censoring the  adult services section, Backpage had  attempted to moderate the ads that  blatantly  advertised  prostitution.

Lacey, Larkin, and Ferrer luckily dodged prosecution in December when states attorney general Kamala Harris filed pimping  charges against them for earning revenue  from prostitutes well as pimping women and  small children out.  as . The  judge threw  the  case out  of court citing the Communications Decency Act of 1996, a federal statute that protects website operators from liability  involving the content of users’ ads. Lacy and  larkin have said they plan to sue Harris for malicious prosecution and that in contrast to the senate report, they sold their  interests in Backpage two years ago.

Thinker, Avid Reader, Couch Potato. Sapphire Hill is a writer from Baltimore Maryland who loves to delve deeper into the whys of everything. Staff writer for 86 Blvd and Badd Magazine. Blogger and talent promoter for Sapphire Spotlight On Talent.

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