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buying, and offer more privacy than credit card purchases. Buyers will be able to charge the time online to their phone bill or have their bank account debited directly. 233

The Internet industry publicly avoids acknowledging or denies the influence of the pornographers and pimps on the Internet industry because the two have become dependent on one another and are now collaborators. All the large Internet service providers (ISPs) are dependent on the sex industry for their profits.234 The Electronic Frontier Foundation admits they regularly give legal advice to operators of pornographic sites on the legality of their operations. 235

Sex Industry and Internet Search Engines

Soon after the sex industry went online, the promotional value of search engines was realized. On December 19, 1994, The Shrimp Club, an organization of men who live or travel in Southeast Asia, set up a Web site to give men an information network for events, parties and products that featured Asian women. As part of their promotional strategy they sent advertisements to newsgroups, such as alt.sex.fetish.orientals, and made sure that their Web site was archived in web search engines. This aggressive marketing

through search engines got them 15,000 accesses to their Web site in the first week.236 was a strategy to be adopted by all sex industry businesses on the Internet.


Search engines are the indexing system for the World Wide Web. Search engines, such as WebCrawler, HotBot, Excite, InfoSeek, and Lycos, search tens of thousands of Web sites per day, picking up keywords placed in the html code, and from the content of the text. Users of the search engines depend on the comprehensiveness and accuracy of search engines, which varies widely from engine to engine, to find material anywhere on the Web when they enter keywords.

Analyses of the keywords entered into Web search engines reveals what subjects are being sought for on the Web. In 1995, a study of the searches on one Web search engine found that 47 percent of the 11,000 most-repeated searches were for pornography. The study also found that one in ten businesses using the Web at that time sold pornography. 237

The sex industry manipulates, exploits, and pays the search engines a lot of money to make sure that the general public finds their sites. Although owners of search engines like to distance themselves from the sex industry and responsibility for the availability of pornography, Robert Davis, the President of Lycos, the popular search engine, criticized their hypocrisy. At the Internet Summit in December 1997, he said that owners of search engines accept advertising from the sex industry on their Web sites. Lycos, does not. 238

Pornography Web site owners exploit any public event to draw Web traffic to their site. Whenever a topic is popular, the pornographers put a keyword on their Web sites that someone is likely to be using to search for information. They then prime the search engines, using special promotional software, to get their sites listed in the first few that come up when someone does a search.

One of the most well known examples of this was the use of the keywords “Princess Diana” to draw traffic to pornography web sites after Princess Diana died in a car crash in August 1997. Anyone entering “Princess Diana” into a search engine was given not only

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