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March 2nd, 2011
08:52 AM ET

Is Facebook fueling prostitution?

A new study from Columbia University's Sociology Department reports that prostitutes find 25% of their clients through Facebook.

The social network known for reconnecting with old friends is now the second leading source of prostitution clients behind escort services, which provide 31% of clients (Craigslist provides 3% of prostitutes' clients). So, does Facebook have any responsibility in stopping the use of the site for such purposes? Sunny Hostin, Legal Analyst and Legal Analyst for "In Session" on truTV, discusses the connection between Facebook and prostitution with Kiran Chetry and Ali Velshi.

Filed under: U.S.
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. YoDaddy

    Prostitutes find clients on Facebook? REALLY? People must be even stupider than I thought. First, Facebook uses your real name, unless you create a bogus profile. Second, the fact that someone could be using a bogus profile should make you hesitate before trusting someone you don't know (could be a predator or a cop).

    The things people do for sex. Too much trouble. Personally, I think it's far easier and less dangerous to find a willing partner that will do it for a dinner or for free.

    March 8, 2011 at 9:46 am |
  2. Scott from NH

    How, exactly, do you find prostitutes on Facebook? "Hi, I see you are a close friend with my cousin Sarah, need $100?"

    March 8, 2011 at 6:15 am |
  3. amarjit

    Every coin has two sides. In the same way all relations & connection in facebook have positive & negative face. Marriage or prostitution too are two sides of social & sexual relationship.As it most abhored profession, it is by & large not acceptable to women even prostitutes who have mental preference for single client as everything in the world is subject to depreciation & aging. Time does not stop & so is relationship. Therefore nobody should brand that fb is giving rise to prostitution when male & female both live in the world all 24 hrs & 7 days a week in homes, public places, villages, cities, towns & countries including means of transportation from camel cart to Aircrafts. It is better we should respect men & women rather than humilating our own beings. I remember once a Doctor defined marriage in his class as " Legal prostitution" which more rational & logical if it goes worst to worse. Let all men & women join hands globally & respect their own relationship in the eyes of next & younger generation & pass on rich & culture refined culture to future instead of foul expression & filthy thoughts. After all even prostitution has been a profession in the worklife & our forefathers did respect all without bias.

    March 7, 2011 at 7:14 pm |

    I don't know if this is true about Prostitutes finding their Clients on Facebook......but I do know for a fact that alot of Scammers getting their Victims on Facebook.this is prohably true for both Sexes......I myself had the Experience ( 4 times) that younger men seeking a older female for Love , Relationships and even Marriage!They are claiming that just from your Profile and Pictures they are deeply in Love with you ect, chat with you for Days, sometimes weeks, and than suddenly come into a hardship Situations where they Beg you for Money to be wired to them, just this one time, please, if you really love me and want a Relationship with me , you will do this Favor for me....I'll pay you back 10x....
    off course, if you don't send them the Money, you never hear from them again....the delete you from their Friends List.
    In all my Cases I have never send any Money to anyone, but I know of other Women who have and lost big Sums of Money, never got to meet the I think whats worse than crippled their emotional State of mind and the ability to ever trust and let them fall in Love again.I think it is very cruel to play with someones Emotions this way, and I wished that this kind of Preditors could be banned from Facebook.

    March 5, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
  5. Philip Kpodo-Kwakutse kwashie

    well i don't doubt this comment.....cos the same thing is happening here in Ghana too.Face book is now the leading source of prostitution in Ghana and especially in Accra.I would even say not all prostitute are using face book but even the normal people within the society also do this....girl who are involved in,like let me say girls who like money and likes to follow men for money are also using face book.I'm not just saying this but i have seen it my self too.but i don't know if something could be done about this.....but i hope there would be a way to limit whats going on.

    March 2, 2011 at 10:16 pm |
  6. Adam

    Give me a break. How about we go after REAL criminals like those on Wall Street?

    March 2, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
  7. mjinmd

    I had to close out my Facebook account because I kept getting contacted by women of questionable character. You could tell by looking at the picture they sent. I figured this would not sit well with the corporate techies.

    March 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  8. JM Lopez

    I can't understand why we are still telling women they cannot rent their body out for profit . Men can do it on the football field , they can do it in a boxing ring , they can do it basically for anything , but women can't .
    Women can kill their babies inside their bodies " because after all it's their body " , but they can't rent it for an hour to some guy who is totally willing to pay for it . ( unless you are in Nevada , or Costa Rica , or Holland , or most other countries )

    Seems to me it is a big waste of time for law enforcement to be the enforcers of some morals but not others .

    Give the taxpayers a break and let women sell their bodies if they want to , just make sure we collect the taxes on the service . And then
    if we were smart ( like Holland ) we would require a license and a regular medical exam .

    Sometimes I feel like I am living in a retarded society !!!!

    JML/Deerfield Beach , florida

    March 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  9. Jeff

    Not sure what the difference is between people selling themselves and Facebook selling their users. All the same to me.

    March 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  10. Jim

    Social network – Social disease. Seems to be the natural progression.

    March 2, 2011 at 3:13 pm |