Craigslist to Shut Down Erotic Services

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that mega-popular classified listings site Craigslist will shut down its "erotic services" section, after criticism from lawmakers and the media -- which you can read about in the latest Weekly cover story.

The Craigslist criticism has been largely two-pronged. Some say that Craigslist should be held partly responsible for the emergence of "Craigslist killers" that lure victims to their death with online ads postings. The other angle, as pushed by attorneys general across the country: Craigslist essentially enables illegal prostitution.

Seemingly as a response to the latter point, the "erotic services" category will be soon deleted and replaced by "adult services." Each "adult" ad will cost $10 and face manual approval from Craigslist staffers.

Another kind of criticism has come from Gloria Allred. She is, among other things, the lawyer for the family of Donna Jou, the Orange County woman who met the man that would later dump her body into the ocean over Craigslist. Allred told the Weekly that she thinks something should be done to monitor and label sex offenders that use the site. So far, no such measures are in place.

But according to the Times, the Craigslist post announcing the change -- which will be published later today -- takes aim at exaggerated reports of Criaigslist-enabled violence: "Unsurprisingly, but completely contrary to some of the sensationalistic journalism we've seen these past few weeks, the record is clear that use of craigslist classifieds is associated with far lower rates of violent crime than print classified." 

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