Craigslist to South Carolina: Why Us?

Even after it agreed to do away with its Erotic Services ads at the instance of numerous states, everyone’s favorite classifieds platform is still drawing the ire of at least one state attorney general. South Carolina AG Henry McMaster has threatened to sue the site and its top executives for enabling prostitution.

But CEO Jim Buckmaster is fighting back. In a blog post today, he pointed to a number of local search and content services — including Microsoft Live Search, AT&T’s YellowPages.com, and the Web site of a regional newspaper — that offer more adult ads that are more explicit than what Craigslist now allows. In sharp language, Buckmaster called for a retraction of McMaster’s accusations. Here’s an excerpt:

Have you fully considered the implications of your accusations against craigslist? What’s a crime for craigslist is clearly a crime for any company. Are you really prepared to condemn the executives of each of the mainstream companies linked above, and all the others that feature such ads, as criminals? … We’re willing to accept our share of criticism, but wrongfully accusing craigslist of criminal misconduct is simply beyond the pale.

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