Should Craigslist Clean Up Its Erotic Services Ads?

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Connecticut Attorney Richard Blumenthal called on Craigslist to ban the use of photographs in its “erotic services” section and take other measures to fight porn and prostitution on the classified ad site. (The image, above, is a portion of an ad that can be found in Craigslist’s erotic services section.)

The attorney general made his appeal after the murder of a New York City masseuse in Boston and an assault on an exotic dancer in Warwick RI. Both women had advertised their services on Craigslist. Authorities said Boston University medical student Philip Markoff, who was arrested for both crimes, found the masseuse on Craigslist.

“Craigslist has the means — and moral obligation — to stop the pimping and prostituting in plain sight,” Blumenthal said in a statement. He also called on Craigslist to impose a “significant fee” to the credit card of anyone posting content in violation of Craiglist’s rules.

To clean up ads on its site, Craigslist last November started to charge for erotic services ads, requiring credit card information and a working phone number. For the most part, Craigslist ads are free.

Jim Buckmaster, chief executive of Craigslist, told the New London Day that he appreciated Blumenthal’s input and agreed that more work had to be done to eliminate ads for illegal services.

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