Craigslist Removes Adult Services Ads

Founder of Craigslist, Craig Newmark

I wonder how much the traffic will decrease on Craigslist now that there is no adult service choice. From The Washington Post:

One of the world’s biggest providers of Internet classified advertising abruptly shut down the “adult services” section of its U.S. Web sites this weekend, apparently in response to criticism from prosecutors that it had become a tool for prostitution.

But it was unclear whether Craigslist – an icon of the new media transformation of American society – had closed the site to placate those critics, or to hit back at them, casting itself as the victim of censorship. On its famously bare-bones Web sites, the blue-lettered link for adult services was gone. It had been replaced with a black box, containing one word: “censored.”

Craigslist’s usually outspoken leaders gave no explanation for their move and no signal as to whether it would be permanent. Last year, the site increased the screening of these ads after authorities in New England said a man had killed one woman and attacked two others he’d contacted through Craigslist.

On Craigslist sites in other nations, the “erotic” sections remained open.

Continues at The Washington Post

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  • http://www.xenex.org/ xen

    Of course, that doesn’t mean that the adult business has left Craigslist, simply that the pimps and prostitutes are posting to EVERY other section, vastly eroding the already limited usefulness of the site.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    I’m torn on this…but in the end I have to admit this was not the best choice. Letting the adult section be open and transparent actually made a better enforcement tool than total censorship. I expect the choice was made because of liability in a time when nuisance lawsuits are daily fare. I’m not championing the notion of flooding every site with porn ads/come-ons/hook-ups and the rest…but now they’re still out there…just harder to track screen and find.

    • Haystack

      I would go a step further and say that prostitution should just be legal, and they should be allowed to advertise and make a living, just like the rest of us.

      • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

        I wouldn’t mind it being declared taxable income. Why the hell should they get off the hook? Also…breaking up the power of pimps would be a nice step in the right direction.

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