Twitter and Sex Workers

    Alexandria Fox · December 31, 2015 · Sexwork: Past and Present · 0 comments

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    Blogged about on Motherboard and much talked about in certain corners of the internet is the fact that sex workers have become a very vocal group tweeting, blogging, protesting and signing book deals about the world of sex work.

    “After all, it’s a lot harder to assume that sex workers are mindless, manipulated fuckbots when they’re tweeting thoughts on feminism, racial justice, or the newest Star Wars film.” (Motherboard)

    Although it is harder to assume we are nothing more than mindless fuck toys, I would not say that there has been any reduced stigma around sex work–especially in the US. Just because many of us are outspoken sex worker rights advocates doesn’t equate to a reduction in stigma associated with the profession.

    Why?

    Being an out sex worker in 2015/2016 is akin to miscegenation in the early 20th century or being openly LGBT. You can lose your job, home, children and prospects of a future career if you are outed–especially if online. In the minds of the average person, the image of a sex worker is still associated with drug addicted street walkers, pimps, human trafficking and the rampant spread of disease. Although those images are based in reality, they present a one dimensional view of sex workers. We cannot grow complacent to the fact that those are the most prominent and well promulgated stories and images of sex workers and people like myself and the strong, brilliant sex workers of Twitter only create cognitive dissonance in the average person. I just had a conversation with a client who hadn’t seen me in two years because he thought that I had dropped out of school to become “a permanent fixture among Atlanta’s sex workers”.

    4“In essence he was saying that as long as I had other goals and dreams that I was actively working towards he rationalized it was ok to see me.”

    Furthermore, The average person would report a known sex worker to the authorities as many of us are seen as a danger to public health and the sanctity of marriages.

    I love the outspoken women I converse with regularly on Twitter but I do not think any one of them would say there is less stigma associated with being a sex worker. SBDD: Same Beliefs, Different Decade is what I experience everyday as a sex worker. The jokes, comraderie, advice and vent space provided me by the sex worker world online has been amazing. I have been able to network with, screen potential clients and meet some awesome ladies in the cities I have traveled to. Women who are smart, articulate, hard working, driven and absolutely gorgeous! We come in all shapes, sizes, ages, races and backgrounds and I have no complaints about my exeperiences as a sex worker but it would prove quite the folly if I thought that there has been a reduction in the vitriolic discussion and beliefs around sex workers.

    Although we have reached crtical mass online and are gaining some media attention, there is still alot of work to be done. SWOP USA is always in need of more volunteers and advocates but until we can change the hearts and minds of the average person the stain of a sex worker past will always be hard to wash out.

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