This week Congress voted in a near-unanimous decision to pass H.R. 1865, FOSTA, which allegedly seeks to combat sex trafficking but in reality seeks to police the safe ways in which sex workers can find and vet clients online. Almost immediately, Craigslist completely deleted its Personals section, claiming that they cannot risk jeopardizing their other services.
In an article for the Huffington Post, gay porn actor Ty Mitchell explained that FOSTA would "effectively force sites to censor any user content that alludes to the exchange of sex for money. It would target ads for sexual services, which in reality can help sex workers by minimizing their reliance on pimps and public spaces to find work. It would also demand that sites censor information that people in the sex trades share among themselves to help each other avoid violence or even escape abusive pimps or partners."
\u201cUse #survivorsagainstsesta to tell a story. Essentially this bill\u2019s going to shut down websites that allow sex workers to safely find/screen clients. Craigslist personals is gone, as well as sex worker forums on reddit. Convos re: sex/safety are being censored & this is beginning\u201d