FOSTA History & Timeline
February 27, 2018
(FOSTA) Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act passes in the Senate.
March 21, 2018
CityVibe shuts down, unknowingly.
This is only the beginning.
March 22, 2018
VerifyHim closes its discussion forums, and would soon eradicate reports that detail the reasons regarding an offender’s blacklist.
March 23, 2018
- Craigslist closes its personals section due to the new legislation stating, “Any tool can be misused.”
- The Erotic Review simply wipes away USA escort advertisements, but reviews on USA escorts continue going strong.
- BestGFE begins shutting most of its forum down.
March 25, 2018
Authors on Amazon accuse the marketplace of deranking their adult erotica due to FOSTA-SESTA.
March 28, 2018
Switter launches, and it would become the first social media platform where adult entertainers can no longer worry about censorship or account suspension simply because of their profession. Read More…
April 6, 2018
- Backpage is seized by the US Government. Michael Lacey, co-founder of BP, has his home raided by authorities.
- The Erotic Review bans access from US visitors due to the new legislation.
- Absolute chaos erupts literally hours within Backpage’s shutdown. Some sex workers would later be reported as missing and even killed.
- Switter quickly responds by creating a new Listings feature for escorts to advertise for free due to the end of Backpage.
Images courtesy of Tara Burns
April 7, 2018
- ECCIE shuts down. The owner would later exclaim via Twitter that the forum is closed, and they are simply too old for this shit.
- My Provider Guide and numerous other escort advertising venues go dark.
April 9, 2018
- A federal judge in Arizona unseals a 93-count indictment against Backpage and its CEO and co-founders. Charges included money laundering and facilitation of prostitution via their website.
- Crockor launches in Australia in response to Cracker (Backpage sister site)’s seizure, and the down under quickly gives it notoriety!
April 11, 2018
- President Trump signs the controversial FOSTA-SESTA bill into law.The American digital escorting world would later encounter the biggest takedown targeting online sex workers ever.
- Seeking Arrangements CEO, Brandon Wade, delivers a message to site users regarding the new legislation and how it’ll affect the sugar dating website.
April 12, 2018
California based escort review site, NightShift, shuts down.
Images courtesy of Tara Burns
April 13, 2018
- Backpage CEO, Carl Ferrer, pleads guilty in state courts in California and Texas and federal court in Arizona to charges of money laundering and conspiracy to facilitate prostitution. Ferrer also agrees to take down every Backpage website he could within five days, and to forfeit all domains related to Backpage within 14 days. The federal indictment seeks to seize 10 residences in California, Arizona, Texas and Illinois and 25 bank accounts, as well as 35 website domains. Read More…
- Brandy Odom labeled the first FOSTA murder related victim.
April 15, 2018
Escort Design shuts down at random. Leaving numerous escorts without websites.
April 17, 2018
California’s SB 1204 is withdrawn from the state senate committee. If passed, it would’ve basically eliminated harm reduction and health services for sex workers in the state.
April 18, 2018
- Rumors across social media of Seeking Arrangements being hit by a sting. A young woman was allegedly detained at a Hilton hotel where she planned to meet her sugar daddy to engage in erotic discrete activities.
- Swiss based encrypted mail host, ProtonMail, voices their support to stop FOSTA/SESTA for sex workers, and how to keep communication private during the new law. Read More…
April 19, 2018
- Cloudflare drops Switter. Read More…
- Preferred 411 announces to stop accepting new applicants — both escorts & clients. Read More…
- Reports of WordPress shutting down escort websites.
- The Erotic Review begins to conceal information relating to USA based escorts, including their reviews, from public view on their website.
- Numerous offshore escort directories such as City of Love, Open Adult Directory, etc. would remove their sections representing United States based escorts.
- Some European directories such as Escort Ads would keep their advertising space open for United States escorts.
April 23, 2018
Backpage seizure is felt at global effects when Australian escorts were reported from experiencing devastation from the Backpage demise.
April 26, 2018
VICE reports about the secret emoji language that human traffickers conversed with via Backpage.
April 27, 2018
A petition is created to repeal FOSTA/SESTA, and it has to generate 100,000+ signatures
Late April 2018
- Rumors of Eros being compromised after a British escort is denied entry into the US.
- Switter grows to become the sixth largest instance, according to Mastodon Network Monitoring.
May 4, 2018
Police continue to find other ways to fight human trafficking without Backpage. Read More…
May 7, 2018
Scam/shady websites would begin to appear. Primarily eccie.ch, some random hobbyist who planned to bank from ECCIE’s originality. Their forum later proved to be virus stricken.
- ECCIE announces a relaunch for early June.
- PrivateDelights launches. The creators claim, “It would pick up where NightShift left off.”
- Reports of Wix shutting down escort’s websites at random.
May 25, 2018
Europe implements The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as a regulation in EU law on data protection and the privacy for all in the European Union. The GDPR would affect escorts and their screening measures since websites are required to detail how they use data and such; however, it would also become more difficult to obtain data because of privacy.
May 27, 2018
The petition to repeal FOSTA/SESTA is closed, and it does not garner the required 100,000+ signatures.
May 29, 2018
Instagram is accused of censoring hashtags relating to sex work.
May 28, 2018
NY Post reports the Backpage closure is not making sex trafficking more difficult for traffickers. Read More…
Early June 2012
Switter continues to gain popularity.
June 2, 2018
AdultSearch, an escort platform, announces their new & invasive verification method of pictures of credit cards and videos from advertisers exclaiming they’re not being trafficked.
June 11, 2018
Crockor launches a USA version of their classifieds dedicated to American sex workers
June 14, 2018
California’s AB 2243 is amended and it protects a sex worker from prosecution for reporting a violent crime. The Evidence Code was inspired by San Francisco’s Prioritizing Safety for Sex Worker policies.
June 21, 2018
Switter hits 100k+ users. Making it the 4th largest instance on Mastodon in terms of population.
June 28, 2018
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) files a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of FOSTA/SESTA. The EFF would team up with Woodhull Foundation with the lawsuit.
July 8, 2018
GoDaddy informs the public via Twitter that they do NOT recommend succumbing to AdultSearch’s invasive verification process.
July 9, 2018
More police report about human trafficking cases are impossible to solve without Backpage. Read More…
July 17, 2018
EFF asks court to block FOSTA as the lawsuit continues. Read More…
July 17, 2018
Former President Sarah Stevens, of PinkDate, an app that plans to become ‘the Uber of Escorts’, steps down because of worries of the new team and their attitude towards escorts. PinkDate would also deal with criticism regarding their new highly anonymous system, and its difficulty to manage a fully anonymous network.
July 26, 2018
The Erotic Review labeled as a co-conspirator in Backpage’s newest indictment. Read More…
July 27, 2018
- About forty sex workers go to Washington to meet with Congress to push back against the FOSTA. Read More…
- “FOSTA Has Stopped 90% of Online Sex Ads” New Republican video spreads false info regarding the ‘success’ of FOSTA. Read More…
Check back soon as we continue to witness and experience this new wave of digital sex work during FOSTA/SESTA.