Make no mistake. This is not about the abuse of minors or sex trafficking. As @sniper pointed out in a similar thread in the lounge, these people describe all sex work as sex trafficking regardless of whether it involves consenting adults. That’s because in their ideology sex work is never truly voluntary or legitimate, and is instead inherently exploitative and maladaptive. Their real goal is to drive all escort ads off the Internet. In their deluded world view, they think this will somehow “end demand,” when of course all it will really do is drive things underground, making them less safe for everyone involved. And do not assume that this is impossible, that another webpage will always pop up, that if a site is based abroad the US Government cannot touch it (after all, Backpage is apparently a Dutch-owed LLC, but its CEO was arrested as soon as he flew into the US), that free speech on the Internet will somehow trump the prosecutorial apparatus of the State or grandstanding US. Senators. The ground has been shifting under our feet for some time now and this is a just another warning that we can take nothing for granted, that things once thought far-fetched may well come to pass. In that regard, I am continually surprised how in the face of these developments, many people here continue to be so passive. They dismiss the RB prosecution as an isolated case, primarily about one website or its CEO. They say Backpage was filled with questionable ads anyway. They ignore the shutdown of Redbook or TheReviewBoard.net because they were straight sites. They assume that these crack downs must really be about tax evasion or DC politicians afraid of being “outed,” or cases of underage immigrants being coerced into the sex trade. To many, it doesn’t seem possible that all this could simply be about moral disapproval of what consenting adults might do behind closed doors. Well, it’s time to wake up people. If we don’t start fighting back, it may well be too late. As I (and others) have asked before, what if RM and M4RN (and all similar remaining sites) are shut down? http://www.message-forum.net/threads/rentmen-down.111542/page-2 (post 21) http://www.message-forum.net/threads/backpage-ceo-arrested.118277/page-2 (post 34) https://www.message-forum.net/threads/state-of-the-business-fall-2016.118211/ (post 5) http://www.message-forum.net/threads/reviews-result-of-rentboy-raid.114972/ (post 13) http://www.message-forum.net/threads/the-strange-story-of-hulk-hogan-gawker-and-peter-thiel.114774/ (post 1) http://www.message-forum.net/thread...ll-for-decriminalization.113549/#post-1085620 (post 2) http://www.message-forum.net/threads/if-rentmen-shuts-down.112784/ (post 9) The time to think about it is now, not after it happens. What can be done? I don’t have all the answers, but the easiest thing to do is to give money. Your New Year’s resolution could be to donate 5% of your hobby budget to the cause. Perhaps it’s to SWOP, to this site, to a legal defense fund, or something else, but think of it as an investment in the kind of future you want for the community. Second, make contingency plans. When you meet someone in person, exchange an emergency email address. When RB was suddenly seized, many people deleted their contact information associated with the site and some people were caught flat-footed with no rolodex of regulars to ride out the storm. Be prepared, just in case. Also, you don’t have to be tech-savy to download an encryption app like this one for your smartphone: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/07/...cy-of-your-messages-download-signal.html?_r=0 Frankly, with the state of hacking and surveillance from governments (both foreign and domestic) people should be using this kind of thing anyway. Third, look for opportunities to speak up and question the politicians and “end demand” ideologues when they spout outrageous statistics and outright lies about sex work. This can be hard if you need to be discrete, but you may be able to raise some simple, basic questions from a position of relative anonymity. For example, perhaps you could prompt a journalist to look into what a sting operation cost, how many arrests involved minors versus consenting adults, and why tax resources were not focused more on the former rather than the later. Of course, there are many other concrete, constructive steps that can be taken to fight back, but the key thing is that people need to fight back and not just hope for the best.