Craigslist.com blocks access to adult services ads

LOS ANGELES, Sept 4 (BestGrowthStock) – Craigslist.com has dropped
its “adult services” listings, which have become the target of
U.S. state attorneys general who say the much-visited online
classified ad site is not doing enough to quash prostitution.

Last year, Craigslist replaced its “erotic services” ads
with a new “adult” category it said would be closely screened.

The move came after a masseuse who offered her services on
Craigslist was killed and a client was charged with her murder.
The man charged in the case committed suicide last month in a
Boston prison cell.

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is
co-leading a group of states attorneys general looking into the
company’s efforts to purge illegal ads from it site.

The private company could be earning $36.3 million or more
a year from prostitution and human trafficking, Blumenthal said
at the time, citing published reports.

In a May blog post, Craigslist Chief Executive Jim
Buckmaster wrote that “… Craigslist has gone beyond
fulfilling its legal obligations, far beyond classifieds
industry norms, has more than lived up to any promises it made,
and working together with its partners is in fact a leader in
the fight against human trafficking and exploitation.”

Company spokespeople could not immediately be reached for
comment on Saturday.

Craigslist has said it had donated all revenues from its
“erotic services” listings to charity. When it switched to its
“adult services” listings last year it said it would make no
commitment to how those revenues would be used.

The online site says it is used by over 50 million people
in the United States, with over 20 billion monthly page views.

Buckmaster has claimed Craigslist is unfairly targeted for
its adult services advertisements while those posted in major
newspapers are ignored.

EBay Inc (EBAY.O: ) is a part owner of Craigslist but the two
companies are currently fighting over eBay’s true stake. EBay
paid about $32 million for a 28.4 percent stake in Craigslist
in 2004, but later accused the company of diluting its stake.

EBay and Craiglist are awaiting a ruling in that matter
from the Delaware Chancery Court.
(Reporting by Deena Beasley; editing by Todd Eastham)

Craigslist.com blocks access to adult services ads