Dacia on Fielding Media Requests re: Spitzer

Have You Been a Whore?

The MSNBC request came through Seal Press, the publisher of Naked on the Internet. I said I would talk to the show’s producer and possibly do the show if I could talk about sex worker rights, politics, and trafficking. They were casting for someone who had been a sex worker to talk about the mechanics of hiring a prostitute, and the producer I talked to point blank asked me the question that is the title of this post, though then he quickly backtracked and said, “I’m sorry if I’m not using the right terminology,” and I told him that no indeed he was not. When asked if I have had sex for money, I told him I had been a fetish worker and sensual masseuse (I’ve briefly been an escort too, though for a fraction of the time of the other jobs) – which seemed to disappoint him, and he said things like, “So you weren’t a real… you didn’t have sex…”

MSNBC was only interested in having a woman who had been a prostitute talk about the mechanics of hiring a sex worker – a little salacious how-to on national television, gotta love it. They told me flat out that they weren’t interested in discussing the political interests of sex workers or the issues around sex trafficking as it is today. And while I am not ashamed that I was a sex worker, and I know sound bites are short and cannot be anywhere near as complicated as my shit it, I don’t want to be MSNBC’s whore on television. It does nothing for me personally and nothing for the movement I’m part of for me to be boiled down to the essence of “will fuck for cash. here’s how.”

And because they are awesome and feminist, my publicist at Seal Press also wrote back to the folks at MSNBC and called them on using the word whore at me. So it’s good to have back up. I’m pissed but not surprised by the words thrown around by the MSNBC producer – the folks at Seal seemed much more perturbed than I was about it. Unfortunately, it’s par for the course. Being an author, filmmaker (albeit pornographer), curator, and having a masters from an Ivy League school all dissolves when the media knows you’re a whore.

2 Responses

  1. I’m surprised at the use of “whore” in a professional context, but I guess the word doesn’t bother me when it’s used to mean what it means, rather than as a put-down.

    What does bother me is that they had no fucking interest in the *other* human interest story (sex-workers as interesting humans) besides “boo-hoo, lets feel sorry for Spitzer’s familly”.

    Thanks for putting your voice out there!

  2. […] Dacia on Fielding Media Requests re: Spitzer […]

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