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posted by on Thursday January 12 2017, @12:31AM   Printer-friendly
from the is-he-a-pimp-or-not? dept.

Hours after the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations released a report claiming that online classifieds website Backpage "knowingly concealed evidence of criminality by systematically editing its adult ads", Backpage shut down the U.S. adult advertising section of its site:

The online classified advertising site Backpage.com abruptly shut its "adult" section on Monday, yielding to a campaign by state and federal government officials to close a service they contend promotes prostitution and human trafficking. The unexpected move came hours after a U.S. Senate subcommittee released a report accusing Backpage of actively editing posts on the site to remove evidence of child sex trafficking.

In announcing its decision, Backpage said it was the victim of government censorship. Backpage attorneys said executives would appear at a subcommittee hearing on Tuesday, but would not testify.

U.S. Senators Rob Portman and Claire McCaskill, however, said their subcommittee found Backpage had been far more complicit in sex trafficking than previously known. "Backpage's response wasn't to deny what we said. It was to shut down their site," they said in a statement. "That's not 'censorship' — it's validation of our findings."

On the same day, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal from three sex trafficking victims accusing Backpage of facilitating the exploitation of children. The Supreme Court let stand a lower court ruling that said Backpage is shielded from liability by federal law since the site's classified ads are posted by users.

Also at Washington Post, NBC, and USA Today.

Previously: Backpage's Dallas Offices Raided, CEO Charged With "Pimping"
"Pimping" Charges Against Backpage Executives Dismissed
California Attorney General Pursues New Charges Against Backpage CEO


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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Snotnose on Thursday January 12 2017, @03:33AM

    by Snotnose (1623) on Thursday January 12 2017, @03:33AM (#452832)

    1) That's not going to stop sex trafficking of children.

    What part of license and monitor don't you get? Children can't get a license. Reputable companies know they're being monitored and won't deal with children.

    What you have is 90% of the sex trade is now under control, which means law enforcement can choose who among the other 10% can be shot without consequences.

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  • (Score: 2) by vux984 on Thursday January 12 2017, @06:34AM

    by vux984 (5045) on Thursday January 12 2017, @06:34AM (#452857)

    What part of license and monitor don't you get? Children can't get a license. Reputable companies know they're being monitored and won't deal with children.

    Then its going to have zero affect on the particular type of case referenced by the article, it was, and shall remain 'underground'.