Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Mentoring’

Safer Alternatives

Maggie, where are you advertising these days?

As I wrote a few months ago, I plan to soon eliminate formal escort advertising; I have a comfortable number of regular clients and I get a lot of business from Twitter, this blog, my videos and books, etc.  But I haven’t quite reached that point yet, and I dropped Eros a few months ago because the flood of idiocy from both Eros management and unschooled would-be clients had become just too much for me to deal with.  Plus there’s this passage in their “Advertiser agreement”:

…Advertiser fully and knowingly expressly consents to the Company’s receipt and handling of…Business Data…notwithstanding when or under what agreement it was provided to the Company…Company has Advertiser’s express permission (without any additional consent) to use and maintain the Business Data however it sees fit, and provide any or all of it to any law enforcement authority, or in response to subpoena or other administrative, regulatory, or legal process or obligation including, without limitation, to a third party…the Company will not be responsible or liable in any way to the Advertiser for [this]…

Which, given what seems increasingly clear about both the company’s relationship to swine and recent US government statements about Eros, feels far beyond the ordinary indemnification boilerplate; accordingly, I’m advising all escorts who can afford to risk a temporary drop in business to desert Eros immediately if not sooner.  I think those of us who are financially-stable enough to lead the way to currently-less-frequented sites such as Slixa, Tryst and Have We Met? are ethically bound to do so now, before the government intentionally destroys Eros and leaves tens of millions of our sisters worldwide stranded as they were when Backpage was destroyed.  I myself am advertising on Slixa and Tryst, and plan to add Have We Met? soon.  As the number of us advertising on those sites increases, more clients will follow us there, so that when the inevitable disaster happens those sites will be popular enough with the gents to provide a comfortable income for those fleeing from the doomed Eros.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

Read Full Post »

Unfortunately, the government’s wanton destruction of advertising platforms has thrown the industry into disarray. Idiots like the one who sent me this a week ago today are now approaching professional escorts when they’re used to dealing with unprofessional dabblers, and things like screening flummox them.  But screening protects decent, normal clients as much as it does sex workers; it demonstrates to the client that he’s dealing with someone professional and careful who has something to lose.  You know who doesn’t screen?  Cops.  They just want to get as many warm bodies into their trap as possible before the word of it gets out, and that means they just love it when guys who are thinking with the wrong head and want a no-questions-asked nownownow date contact them through their fake ads.  This certainly doesn’t mean that everyone who doesn’t screen is a cop; however, it does mean that of those who don’t, a share approaching 100% are either unprofessional, extremely desperate, totally inexperienced, or up to no good.  From our side of the equation, even the request for screening info acts as a form of pre-screening; if a man is in too much of a rush or is too much of an entitled clod to comply, or else refuses because he has something to hide, I’m uninterested in seeing him anyway.  The short exchange illustrated here demonstrates another value of the process.  A large fraction of low-intelligence, poorly-socialized men respond to what they perceive as rejection with insults and rage; imagine if I had upset this cretin in person, in a private setting.  And then think again about whether you want to eschew screening.

Read Full Post »

Community

How do I connect with other escorts in my area?  The few that I have reached out to for references, haven’t appeared to be too keen on continuing a conversation past the reference subject.  A point in any direction for support, friendship etc would be much appreciated.

I don’t believe there are any sex worker organizations in your immediate area, but the easiest way for you to start finding other sex workers to talk to would be Twitter.  If you follow me (@Maggie_McNeill) you will see that I interact with and retweet LOTS of other sex workers, some of whom may live close to you.  You can then follow other people and interact yourself, and even make good online friends (some of whom you may later meet IRL).  It’s a very good idea to do this; though it’s lucrative and flexible, sex work can be very isolating, especially in a criminalized regime.  And when you get overwhelmed by all the bullshit lies told about our work in the media, it’s good to have other ladies you can get a reality check from.  Twitter’s also a good way to keep up on what’s happening in our world; people post information on bad clients, stings, activist events, etc.  I think you’ll find it’s exactly what you’re looking for.  There is currently considerable concern that due to FOSTA Twitter may kick sex workers off as so many other platforms have, so you may also with to join Switter and also get contact information (phone, email, etc) from the friends you make so that if catastrophe happens you won’t be cut off.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

Read Full Post »

Peeking Out

I retired from sex work about 4 years ago, and I’m in university studying the health system and health policies.  Nobody in my life knows about my history and I do not discuss it.  However, I wish to do my graduate studies in social policy and rights focusing on sex worker policy, so I am thinking it might be time for me to start to “come out” to some people.  I am about to meet a lecturer on my current degree, who is helping me with my graduate application.  I am planning on coming out to her about my history; I think she will be supportive, but I am very nervous.  Any advice you can offer me, I would appreciate so much.

Obviously, we need as many sex workers and sex work alumnae to be out as possible, and I’ve written on the subject before (as have others I’ve collected in my tag “Coming Out”).  However, there’s no doubt it can be harmful to some.  My main concern would be, can this woman you want to come out to harm your academic career if she reacts badly?  And has she given you any indication that she won’t?  Because more than anything else, those are the important factors; there’s a very good reason most people who come out voluntarily are in a position where very few others have power over them.  My thought is, if this woman has publicly expressed support for sex workers, and she cannot easily derail your career, it’s probably OK to come out to her (especially since you want to focus on sex work policy).  But if she could possibly harm you and has never expressed any public pro-sexwork sentiments, I would choose another person to come out to first, and see how that goes before proceeding with your advisor.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

Read Full Post »

Distinctive

I’m very interested in sex work, but I have a rare (not contagious) skin condition.  In day to day life it can’t be seen under clothing, but when I’m nude it’s impossible to hide.  Because of this I don’t think I could successfully advertise my services without compromising my identity, and I’m concerned that there are some men who might be put off by the appearance if I dress to hide it in pictures.  Do you have any suggestions on finding men who would consider my marks an asset to my beauty, without compromising my privacy or boundaries?  I’ve also considered exploring long term arrangements where I would exchange both my emotional intimacy and sex for money and material items (I’m not too sure if there is a specific name for that).  Have you know any SW who leveraged unusual physical characteristics and were able to thrive in their careers?

One thing we learn in the sex industry is that anything which sets one woman apart from others will have its fans.  For example, my friend Buttons Berry is a little person, about four feet tall, and she supports herself quite well via escorting.  But though men are accepting of a wide variety of characteristics, they definitely want to see what they’re getting (and can get angry if they feel as though they’ve been “fooled”), so hiding your skin condition in photos might be a bad idea, and showing it could compromise your identity, since the condition is rare.  How would you feel about trying sugar dating on for size first?  That’s the name for the kind of compensated dating you’re talking about, and though it’s not as lucrative as escorting it’s “softer” in the sense that there is far less social stigma in being a sugar baby than an escort, and it’s not illegal.  You could make your public pictures clothes-on and mention your skin in the write-up, with pictures revealing more on a private page that men need your permission to get to (most sugar sites are set up that way).  That way you could get used to the work and see how men react, without spreading nudes all over the internet and potentially torpedoing your future “straight” career plans.  Plus, as I wrote a few weeks ago, this is a very uncertain time to be entering escorting, so I feel uncomfortable suggesting any new ladies enter that particular type of sex work right now.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

Read Full Post »

I often get questions from women who are interested in becoming sex workers.  Sometimes they have specific questions, but more often they want general advice; you can find past questions like this in my Mentoring tag, or on my “Previously Asked Questions” page under “Mentoring”.  But while I was answering last week’s question I realized that I cannot in good conscience continue to advise young American women to enter full-service sex work (i.e. escorting or other forms of prostitution) at all until “sex trafficking” hysteria has imploded and the ramped-up persecution of sex workers, our clients, our loved ones and our associates has at last died down.  Every day I read stories of women being raped, beaten, humiliated, locked in cages and even murdered by cops who claim either that they’re “rescuing” us or “abating” us (like a disease).  Every day I receive communications from time-wasters and psychos, and read other ladies’ complaints of similar incidents.  Every few weeks another advertising site or escort service falls victim to a high-profile pogrom, and a constant stream of new surveillance weapons are deployed against us (and this doesn’t even count the shockingly-invasive amounts of information websites like Eros are demanding as a condition of carrying escorts’ ads).  On top of all that, I myself keep advising gentlemen to stick to contacting well-known and well-established providers, and to avoid unknowns; that’s excellent advice for them, but very bad for new ladies just getting into the business.  And while the vast majority of clients are probably unaware of my advice, it would be pretty shitty of me to help women get into the business while simultaneously warning men to avoid them.  No, I’m afraid that for the duration of the moral panic I’ll have to limit myself to helping those who’ve already crossed the Rubicon, while suggesting that those who haven’t consider taking up a branch of sex work that hasn’t been criminalized…yet.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

Read Full Post »

I’m an 18 year old virgin, barely making ends meet at my dishwashing job; I’m interested in making money with my body.  I’ve thought about stripping but I don’t think I have the body for it and I have self harm scars on my thighs; maybe porn or escorting might be another avenue to explore.  Would it be a good selling point that I’m a virgin?  How would I go about advertising that?

Since stripping and porn performing are more visual than escorting, you may be right about the latter being a better path for you than the former two.  I wouldn’t worry too much about the scars if I were you; I have some fairly noticeable scarring on my left arm, and I know a lady with pronounced Cesarean section scars, and both of us are quite popular escorts.  There are three things in your letter, however, which do concern me and you should consider them deeply before attempting to pursue sex work.

The first is your youth:  while 18 is of legal age and I’ve known some ladies (including me) who did sell sex at that age, the ongoing hysteria over “child sex trafficking” has made being so young a liability rather than an asset.  Advertising sites are going to subject you to extra scrutiny, webcrawling programs run by the government and its prohibitionist cronies will flag you for increased surveillance, and your local cops and/or the FBI may even target you for “rescue” (i.e. arrest and use as a propaganda subject) in one of their pogroms if they decide you might be underage or vulnerable.

The second is your use of the phrase “make money with my body”, which to me indicates you’ve absorbed some harmful myths about sex work.  What you’re doing now is making money with your body; unless commercial dishwashing is very different from the home variety, it doesn’t exactly require a lot of mental work.  Escorting, on the other hand, requires considerable emotional labor; creating ads, screening clients and building a brand also require a great deal of head work.  It may be that you’re up to the challenge; since I know nothing about you I can’t say.  But even some very bright people don’t really like expending the kind of mental and emotional energy necessary to succeed as an escort, especially in these times of vanishing advertising sites and increased screening difficulty.

The third is your virginity.  You didn’t say where you live, but your spelling and word use seem American to me.  So unless you’re planning to go abroad, the only way to openly sell your virginity without bringing down hordes of authoritarians attempting to “save” you from a sensible decision (because you’re supposed to give your virginity for free to some stupid, penniless boy who may inflict an STI or worse, a pregnancy, on you) is to make a deal with a Nevada brothel to market that, and they’ll take 50%.  Furthermore, none of the high-profile virginity sales of the past few years have gone well, which rather makes skeptical of the whole concept in the 21st century (though it worked well in the 19th and early 20th).  Furthermore, I don’t think it’s an especially good idea for a young woman who doesn’t even know how she’s going to feel about sex with men to try to make a living at it from square one.

My advice to you is this:  get a bit of sexual experience under your belt (no pun intended) before considering any kind of in-person sex work.  Try doing phone sex (there are some services such as Niteflirt which are quite popular) and see if you like that, then maybe move onto camming.  Do some research and talk to sex workers, and then after you’ve been doing the not-in-person stuff for a while you can try dipping into escorting if you still want to.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »