In the Jan. 26 issue of New Haven Advocate, three writers engage in a debate on alt-weeklies' connection to pornography. In "Porn Free," Carole Bass questions why alt-weeklies "reflexively pimp for porn." Ryan Kearney and Tom Gogola provide counterpoints in "Porn Goes Public" and "Slings and Eros."

Continue ReadingPorn and Counter-Porn

According to a United Press International story, a prostitute who advertised her nude house-cleaning service in Cleveland's Scene newspaper was arrested along with her boyfriend for allegedly scamming $67,000 from a 75-year-old Amish customer. The woman and her boyfriend were charged with extortion, theft from an elderly person and burglary for threatening to distribute incriminating pictures of the man to his church community.

Continue ReadingAdult Ad in Scene Newspaper Led to Blackmail of Amish Man

It its column "The Buzz," a Metro Silicon Valley competitor, The Wave Magazine, describes court documents related to an undercover investigation of unlicensed San Jose massage parlors that allegedly were being operated as brothels and employing illegal immigrants. The Wave suggests that "these houses of ill repute got the word out and drummed up demand by placing so-called 'escort' and 'massage' ads in alternative newspapers, including the Metro Silicon Valley." The Wave then quotes a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent as saying, "We do watch and monitor how those mediums are used to facilitate crime, one of those crimes being prostitution." The column goes on to discuss other incidents involving adult advertising at alternative weeklies.

Continue ReadingThe Wave Magazine Connects Ads in Metro Silicon Valley to Prostitution Bust

In the wake of an ad salesperson's arrest on charges of promoting prostitution, the Scene has suspended the personal adult services section of its classified pages. During the suspension, incoming publisher Chris Ferrell will thoroughly review the paper's procedures for running such ads. The decision was made after an undercover police investigation resulted in the arrest of Nels Noseworthy, the Scene's adult ad salesperson, office assistant and receptionist. The probe has its roots in a crackdown on prostitution that began in the late '90s, writes Scene reporter Matt Pulle.

Continue ReadingNashville Scene Suspends Adult Ads During Review

The indictment accuses Nels Noseworthy of promoting prostitution by coordinating the placement of adult ads for the Nashville Scene, reports the Tennessean. The investigation leading to a grand jury's indictment lasted more than a year, and included undercover officers placing ads in the paper that, police contend, Noseworthy knew to be for prostitution. Scene Publisher Albie Del Favero calls the arrest retaliation for a story the paper recently ran about a DUI received by the police chief's son. A police spokesman brands that accusation "ridiculous."

Continue ReadingNashville Scene Ad Exec Charged with Promoting Prostitution

Pittsburgh Catholic apparently believes that its hometown alt-weekly should be wrapped in a brown bag and handed out from behind the counter. "We need to ensure that our children are protected from unhealthy and exploitative images of sexuality," says a representative of the local diocese who thinks it's "unconscionable" that Pittsburgh City Paper is openly distributed in public. “I’m not running a day care center,” City Paper editor Andy Newman tells the paper. “I have a newspaper, and I feel like other people are responsible for supervising their own children.”

Continue ReadingCatholic Paper Questions Alt-Weekly’s Availability to Children

The Louisville, Kentucky, weekly was among four publications banned from Kroger, three of them for having sexually suggestive content (in LEO's case, apparently, its adult ads). But what about the sexual content of Cosmopolitan, which is still on the racks, asks executive editor and founder John Yarmuth. He argues that the selective banning constitutes censorship. In an accompanying article, Tom Peterson interviews public relations professionals about Kroger's strategy.

Continue ReadingLEO Responds to Being Removed from Kroger

Creative Loafing Charlotte "is still waiting for some kind of clarification or retraction after a March 16 WCNC-TV report that had a Charlotte-Mecklenburg vice officer saying that CL is kind of a pimp for illegal 'spas,'" Shannon Reichley writes. No one on the broadcast accused the daily Charlotte Observer, which runs the same ads, of pimping, the alt-weekly's media columnist complains. Still, she's never liked the fact that the two papers earn cash from businesses she describes as legitimate but "sleazoids."

Continue ReadingPaper Wants TV Station to Clarify Accusation of Pimping

Like many big-city alternative newspapers, sex ads fill the back pages of the New York Press, and. according to the paper's classified manager, "It's not a secret that most of the girls are prostitutes." Furthermore, police officials "in some cities" buy classifieds to set up sting operations and they also "pressure" classified managers to give up the names of their adult advertisers, Allan Wolper reports. "We know that almost every one of those ads involve sex for money ," says Sgt. Chris Bray of Phoenix vice, which places undercover ads in the Phoenix New Times as well as The Arizona Republic. "We make about 10 arrests a month from the ads and get about eight convictions."

Continue ReadingSex Ads are “Law Enforcement Tip Sheets,” says E&P Columnist