Craiglist Takes Aim At The World’s Oldest Profession

You are doubtless aware that Craigslist has been under fire of late from a looong list of state’s attorneys over the large number of prostitute connections that are made through the “Erotic Services” channel of the site. Until now, such ads were free and essentially untraceable by law enforcement authorities, except through stings.

Well Craigslist has made an agreement with 40 states to try to do a better job of curbing use of the site by individuals offering illegal services.

Under the agreement, Craigslist will charge $10 for these ads, and require payment by credit card, which will make such missives very traceable. The other virtue of the system is that it may prevent child prostitution listings since credit cards are generally limited to those over 18.

OK, so first thing we need to talk about. Does this make Craiglist an electronic pimp? Well, perhaps, but it will be a generous pimp, as all fees charged for erotic service ads will be donated to charity.

As is often the case with discussions of prostitution, there is a bunch of controversy on the interwebs — many appear to be complaining that this does nothing to protect the sex workers. Well, that’s true. But it may serve to reduce the growth in the number of acts of child prostitution — which I understand has been a big problem because of Craigslist.

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