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Porn Sets Asked to Stop Production to Help Slow the Spread of Coronavirus

"We do not take this step lightly:" The Free Speech Coalition has asked all adult production sets to voluntarily stop production, until March 31.

by Samantha Cole
Mar 16 2020, 2:54pm

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On Sunday night, the national trade organization for the adult industry called for all in-person porn production to cease.

The Free Speech Coalition said in an announcement that it's asking that producers voluntarily cancel all shoots through March 31, and that performers stop shooting new content with people who aren't part of their households.

"We do not take this step lightly," the announcement said. "We ask that all members of the adult industry stay home as much as possible, leaving the house only for necessities."

The recommendation comes following California Governor Gavin Newsom's call on Sunday for the closure of all "non-essential" businesses, such as bars and wineries.

Sex workers have been bracing for this for weeks. On March 6, the FSC suggested adult performers start stocking up on backlog content, to release if such a production stop were called. Studios and content platforms started making preparations, too: Stripchat started doubling payouts to its Italian models.

Now that the larger shutdown is recommended, many performers who rely on studio work may be forced to shift to cam modeling, phone sex and other digital, remote work.

Porn sets are possibly some of the cleanest places one can be, pandemic or not. "Because transmission risk rises with the number of people interacted with, adult sets are less of risk than more pedestrian interactions, like going to the airport," FSC communications director Mike Stabile told VICE last week.

In the last few weeks, as more cities call states of emergency and companies encourage employees to work from home and not travel for business, exotic dancers and sex workers who do in-person escort work have also noticed a dip in sales.

“I feel like my career as a dancer is in jeopardy as it becomes increasingly less viable to hang out in crowds," Andrea Werhun, a 30-year-old stripper based in Toronto, told VICE last week, "which is kind of what I do every Friday and Saturday night in order to make money."

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