The LA Times reports that as of today Craigslist will no longer be accepting submissions from people wishing to post advertisements in the sites’s Erotic Services section; and in seven days time, the section will be completely removed. In its place Craigslist will be creating a new section called Adult Services for which submissions will be approved by hand. Adult Services adverts will cost $10 - double what it cost people to post in the Erotic Services section.
Craigslist Chief Executive officer Jim Buckmaster told The LA Times that the decision was a careful one and that the company was confident it had struck the right balance.
"It was a balancing act where we’re trying to respond to feedback to constituencies that we felt were important. When you’re talking about attorneys general who are the top legal authority in their respective states," said Buckmaster.
"That was feedback that we felt was important to take into account," he told the LA Times. "We’re optimistic that we’ve struck the right balance."
The news follows the South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster's threats of criminal charges if Craigslist didn’t remove its Erotic Services section from the website. The guidelines in place for the Adult Services section are as follows:
- Adult Services, like all categories on Craigslist, must only be used for advertising legal services.
- Ads suggesting or implying an exchange of sexual favors for money are strictly prohibited.
- Ads including pornographic images, or images suggestive of an offer of sexual favors are strictly prohibited.
One user of the Erotic Services section spoke to CNET about the changes. Going only by Catherine, the woman says she knew something was wrong on Monday when her ad offering "a happy ending" was rejected and said the changes are a sign of an immature society, hellbent on repressing sexuality.
"This is ridiculous," she told CNET News. "It is a sign of an immature society to repress sexuality. You're going to create more violence by doing this. The more you repress or distort sexuality, the more problems you create," she added, going on to call the move made by state attorneys general as "completely incompetent." Catherine said she spoke to one of her clients, who works as a bank official, and was devastated by the news.
We're eager to see how this pans out and wonder what kind of Adult Services advertisments will actually be approved the human screeners. Do Kissograms and strippers count as sexual favors?