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Rhee, who has yet to join Switter, points out that many alternative sites for sex workers charge expensive fees to place ads.
“Somebody who is doing sex work to get by and is in dire straits does not have 0 to place an ad,” Rhee says.
“Losing these platforms means there is a much higher chance of ending up in a potentially life-threatening situation.” One escort, Buffy, tells that it’s hard to pinpoint one single thing that’s currently at stake in the wake of FOSTA’s passing.
“The reality of it is, my career and my entire life are in jeopardy because of this bill,” she says.
It’s disconnecting many of the most vulnerable sex workers from crucial resources.“Sex work is how I pay my rent, how I pay my bills, how I feed myself and my pets.” Although she says she’s able to stay afloat for now, she has concerns about the long-term sustainability of her profession if she’s kept offline.Buffy learned about Switter through a group chat that acts as a safe space for providers in her area to talk.As an open-source platform, Mastodon mimics the look and function of Twitter.Rather than rely on a single flagship site, however, it functions through a series of networks called instances.Instead, sex workers will be driven to the streets, she says, and may even lose their ability to do their work independently.As online options are vanishing, Rhee says she’s received solicitations from services offering to help her get clients.“Those that are impoverished, those that are running away from abusive partners, those that are actively trying to get out of really bad situations, especially black, trans street workers,” N’jaila Rhee, an educator and sex worker who hosts The Cuntcast Podcast, tells .“They’re now cut off from a means of elevating themselves into a safer workspace.” Switter, which uses a domain hosted in Austria, offers a workaround to this US legislation.“As the websites continue to be made and shut down, eventually, new central hubs will become apparent, and I intend to be a part of them.” As sex workers fight for their livelihoods, there’s also concern about the social implications of being driven off public web platforms.The stigma around sex work is far from gone, and the fallout from FOSTA for those in the industry is proof.