Sheriff Seeks Craigslist Erotic Services Ban

    March 6, 2009
    WebProNews Staff

An Illinois sheriff wants Craigslist to stop making it so easy to catch prostitutes. Apparently it just gives him a lot more work than he can handle.
Craigslist Lawsuit
Sheriff Tom Dart, of Cook County, Ill., filed suit against Craigslist and asked a federal judge to ban the online classified advertising site from offering its erotic services section. “Craigslist is the single largest source of prostitution in the nation,” he said, and Dart is seeking $100,000 in reimbursement for the costs of prostitution investigations stemming from Craigslist.

This was a gem of a quote:

“I could make arrests off Craigslist 24 hours a day, but to what end? I’m trying to go up the ladder.”

Tom Dart
Tom Dart

So what he’s saying is Craigslist is making it way too easy for him to do his job, and he’d rather catch the really stupid pimps, hookers, and johns (the ones now advertising and utilizing illegal activities on the Internet) himself, on street corners, back alleys, and truck stops, just like the olden days, good, honest days of actual work. Craigslist just takes the fun out of the chase.

When he goes up that ladder he’s talking about though, he’ll likely discover the federal protection Craigslist enjoys under the Communications Decency Act, which shields Internet services from liability for third party content. Being a lawman, Dart probably should have checked on that before calling a press conference.

Craigslist’s FAQ explains why the Erotic Services section is provided:

Q: Why does craigslist have an "erotic services" category?


A: It was established at the request of craigslist users, who were tired of seeing ads for escort services, sensual massage, adult web cams, phone sex, erotic dancing, adult websites, nude housecleaning, etc mixed into the regular personals and services categories.

In addition, Craigslist maintains a ban on illegal activity and removes posts when discovered.