Craigslist has announced that it is permanently taking down its section of erotic services on its sites.
The section is not accepting any new ads and it will be completely dismantled in a week. The classified conglomerate has also said that it will donate proceeds it earned from the erotic services section to charity, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Next, Craigslist will be putting up a section of ads for adult services, and each of the listings will be manually approved (erotic services ads aren’t reviewed). Placing a classified in the new section will cost $10, which is twice as much as erotic services ads cost.
This decision follows weeks of scrutiny from law enforcement officials after Julissa Brisman, a masseuse, was found dead in a Boston hotel on April 14. Phillip Markoff has been accused of beating her with a gun and then shooting her.
Police say Phillip found Julissa through an ad on Craigslist.
"Unsurprisingly, but completely contrary to some of the sensationalistic journalism we’ve seen these past few weeks, the record is clear that use of Craigslist classifieds is associated with far lower rates of violent crime than print classifieds," the company stated. "However, with respect to this new paid category for advertising by legal businesses, we will experiment with some of the methods traditionally employed in paid print classifieds."
Authorities in Rhode Island filed charges against Phillip last week. They claim he robbed a stripper in their state two days after he allegedly killed the masseuse.
— Sonya Eskridge