SESTA / FOSTA - how will it affect the Australian escort community?
There has been much discussion in recent days in the sex worker community about the passing of the SESTA / FOSTA bill in the United States, and what effects this bill will have on Australian escorts.
Understandably, there is a lot of uncertainty right now regarding this bill, which is causing a lot of stress and angst throughout the global escort community - including escorts in Australia. In the last few days Scarlet Blue has received multiple emails from some of our advertisers who were concerned about the potential fallout from the SESTA / FOSTA Bill; how it will affect Scarlet Blue, and what will happen to Twitter.
For those who are not aware, the SESTA / FOSTA bill was drafted in an attempt to combat online sex trafficking in the United States. The bill aims to make online platforms legally responsible for the promotion of sex trafficking that may take place on their website. The bill has been highly criticised by sex workers, internet and technology groups, as well as pro free speech groups worldwide, and it is anticipated that the bill will only hurt the sex workers who choose their professional as their own free will, and will just drive sex trafficking underground.
Although it is very early to tell what the full effects of SESTA / FOSTA will be on international websites, it is important to be aware of the facts, and where the laws will apply.
DOES SESTA / FOSTA APPLY TO AUSTRALIAN ESCORTS?
The SESTA / FOSTA bill has been passed, but it has not yet been signed in as law. If it does get signed in, the laws will apply to the United States Of America. The laws do not apply to Australia, where sex work is governed by our own state and territory laws.
HOW WILL IT AFFECT SCARLET BLUE?
Scarlet Blue does not promote escort services for the United States of America, and we never have. We are operating under the guidance of our legal team and within Australian law, and we follow these laws strictly. We have a lot of highly advanced technology in place to ensure that we comply with Australian laws for our escort advertising, which vary from state to state.
For our website hosting, we use companies where we have received approval for the advertising of adult and escort services. We only host our website with companies that allow us to do so, and we are aware of their Terms. We have invested heavily and have many redundancies in place, to ensure that our website remains online and uninterrupted at all times for our advertisers and their clients.
HOW WILL IT AFFECT TWITTER?
Many Australian escorts have been concerned about the possibility of Twitter deleting escort accounts, and not allowing sex workers to use their platform. Several escorts have deleted tweets and made changes to their accounts in order to lessen the chance of being suspended on Twitter, some even deleting years worth of tweets.
For Australian escorts it is important to know that although Twitter is a US company that could possibly be affected by the SESTA / FOSTA bill, Twitter has two sets of Terms and Conditions: One is for the United States, and the other is for the rest of the world. Australian escorts fall under the Terms Of Service for the rest of the world - not for the USA.
Twitter's separate TOS can be read here: https://twitter.com/en/tos
So far since the passing of the SESTA / FOSTA bill, Twitter has not yet changed their Terms and Conditions. If Twitter does update their Terms for the United States, it is likely that it will not affect Australian based escorts for 2 reasons:
1 - they are not in breach of any US Laws, sex work is governed by our own state and territory laws in Australia
2 - Australian users of Twitter fall under different Terms and Conditions to American users
As mentioned earlier, it is too early to tell what effect SESTA / FOSTA will have on Australian escorts - if any. We will be keeping a close eye on all developments and we will most certainly make changes where necessary. One thing is for certain, that Scarlet Blue will remain here online and continue to service the needs of our independent escorts and their clients.