Initially, I was going to write this as a Monty Python style blog.
What have the Professionals ever done for us?
Well, apart from better sanitation and medicine and education and irrigation and public health and roads and a freshwater system and baths and public order… no wait, that was Romans.
There is some background to this blog I’d like to get out the way and some limitations.
So obviously, unless you’ve been hiding under a rock – there’s been a lot of concerns recently around SESTA/FOSTA, what it could mean and steps preemptively taken by websites in the days before it is formally signed.
A lot of Professionals are being thrown under the bus here.
Not just by policy changes, but by users who see this as a way to push their agenda : “So you’re getting rid of Findommes”, are some cheers on Fetlife, in response to the news they are considering banning ‘Financial Domination’ as a Fetish, “Great – sugar babies next!”.
So, I had considered a slippery slope blog. If you don’t think that you are not, in some way, next – then you’re not paying attention.
However, I felt uncomfortable on some points. I’m a cis, het, white, guy – and can’t speak on behalf of sex workers.
Although, with those traits – maybe more people might listen to me. I dunno.
So, one thing I will say is – y’know – fucking listen to sex workers and how it will affect them.
Don’t try to mansplain what they could do unless. And if your answer is “Get a job” then you really have no fucking idea what you’re even on about.
(Sex work is work. And, how do you explain this on a CV when applying for a fullfilling and satisfying office job?).
So listen to people and help where you can by doing what they say they need, not what you think they need.
Another problem is the landscape is very changeable very quickly and things I might post about SESTA/FOSTA could change quickly within days as websites decided and re-decide policies, as sites are taken down and put back up or whatever.
Next up. I have limitations. I draw my experiences from the kink scene.
General full service sex work, escorting, mainstream porn, I have somewhat limited experience in and so my points below will reflect on that.
So my main point…
I generally dislike any form of attempts of shaming or anti- comments against Professional Dominatrixes.
(Or any Sex Worker in general).
I think partially because, well, obviously I’ve made many acquaintences of whom this is their chosen line of work : some of which are people I feel we are friends.
But aside from – well – wanting my friends to do well in their chosen work : I think there’s a lot of ignorance in the importance of Professionals within BDSM.
(Disclaimer : many regions have a lot of amazing people who do a lot who do not work as professional by any definition. The purpose of this post is not to take anything away from them, but, instead – build up Pros).
So what have Pros done for us.
Ran, organised or helped with fetish events.
I had wanted to fully research this – but thinking my way particularly around the UK. I struggle to think of many which do not have some form of Pro involvement. Of course, I can think of some – but in the NE for example I can think of one that does not, but three that do.
Whether it is as the promoter, a House Dominant/sub, entertainment.
I’d even flakely suggest that some with their own following can attract people to an event if they mentioned they were going.
Own the dungeons
Thinking myself around the UK again, pretty much every dungeon that is available to hire is owned by someone who works or has worked Professionally.
So, if you want to play with your partner or someone in a dungeon set up then chances are it’s owned by a Pro.
The others are likely to be kept in business by Pros, that there’s more cases where a Pro with client is going to want to hire than a couple. I appreciate that’s a bit #citationneeded but, let’s go the other way – are there any dungeons that are available to hire but not to Pros?
Workshops and Demos
This point I am a little woolier on – because there are a lot of people who run or do demos who do not work or who have never worked Professionally. But, then, there are an awful lot who are – considerably enough that if you removed these from the pool, then there may be less workshops.
But then also, I guess it depends on where you draw the line on professional – because if we start to put in people like retailers, toy makers, etc. many of whom also do demos – even if it’s giving something back (regardless of if they’re paid or not) it still serves as advertising for either themselves or what they are selling.
Of course, workshops are valuable because they’re a good way to boost skills and knowledge in a safer environment than trial or error at home.
But they made the video tutorials you can do at home also.
Or wrote the books.
They star in the Porn you masturbate to
Just while we’re on the subject of videos.
I just find it kinda sad that we’re happy to enjoy stuff they’ve created but not want to share rights.
Incidentally, I’m aware of things that are seperated by law, particularly when it gets into sex. But ultimately, someone doing porn and being paid by a producer to do PIV and someone offering PIV for money, it’s still closer than some consider.
Vocally opposing porn law changes…
Ones which will affect your enjoyment, but that you might not be as comfortable speaking out against.
Be more concerned about trafficking than those outside the industry
Because aside from actual empathy based on actual experiences, they also are aware of the unwanted negative attention.
Which of course is interesting when you consider how little people seem to care about trafficking in other industries (retail, restaurants, fishing).
Advocate for safe sex
Because, let’s be honest – no one wants a STI. So this becomes something sex workers are more aware of so are more likely to encourage it and get themselves tested.
More likely to help small businesses
I appreciate this is a wooly one but particularly when it comes to kink toys and furniture and equipment – pros are more likely to want things customised to their needs/preferences or decent quality items that will last. So, you’re less likely to be hit by something mass produced which will fall apart after a few strikes.
Within services offered…
More likely to be able to help someone who “just wants to try”
We see these people on the internet all the time, “I just want to try” – and, this is obviously an emotional investment for someone else to build up trust and relationship only to find the person is now satisfied having tried.
Sometimes, how do you broach something. I really wanted to do watersports, but how do you go up to someone and ask them to piss on you?
So, seeing a Pro is a simple transaction. You get to try – they get compensated – and you’ve wasted nobodies time if you’re now satisfied or don’t like it or whatever.
Likely to be able to help those whom have disabilities
Or whom are older. Or, from another position where going out and meeting someone is not easy.
Let’s be honest – if someone came on fetlife and said they wanted to do something but they were old, disabled, whatever – then a lot of people would think they were seeking attention or others may be put off by these factors.
The nature of their disability may make it difficult to meet up regularly.
I’d seen a few suggestions also and I agree in essence – but some things I’m not sure on overall.
So SW-ers can be a *way* to act out fantasies or explore kinks, but this is not the only way.
And also whilst sharing their knowledge and experiences can be valubale – again, there are non-pros in your kink community who may do the same.
For a large part, the majority of my post is how they have contributed to everyone.
As I said at the outset, it’s not exhaustive. I don’t want to take anything away from what others do or have done.
What I merely wanted to state is, well, there’d be a hell of a lot less without them.
We get it.
You disprove of ‘findom’ or ‘pay to play’ or whatever. Just be careful running your little potty mouth because SW-ers have already done a lot for you. Indirectly, if nothing else.