|Molly Simmons, a big no!|
Sex workers are facing dire financial and personal circumstances as fear of the coronavirus extends into every corner of life, with some under pressure to work in increasingly risky conditions.
Escorts, strippers, dominatrixes, and an intimacy coach told BuzzFeed News they had lost thousands of dollars due to canceled conferences, travel restrictions, and clients’ fears of being in public spaces.
Porn performers have been advised to stockpile video content to release in the event that the industry shuts down, but the most vulnerable sex workers face the threat of exploitation and homelessness.
“Anytime there’s this type of panic,” said sex worker and activist Molly Simmons, “clients understand that as a shift in power.”
As public health departments recommend "social distancing," the sex workers whom BuzzFeed News spoke to explained how they’re planning to continue to support themselves while trying to protect their health in the midst of a global pandemic.
Some said they are turning to online work like sexting and video calls, putting wish lists of food and other goods on Amazon, asking questions about their clients’ travel history, and relying on trusted clients to make ends meet.
For the past two years, Giselle Palmer has been shooting adult films in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley, the epicenter of the porn industry. Then at the beginning of this year, she started hearing about the coronavirus. It was, she says, a large part of her decision to move away from L.A. back home to Texas and stop shooting scenes for a while.
“I’ve shifted my focus to content platforms and streaming; things I can do with no physical contact with other performers. And I’m pretty happy with that decision,” she tells Rolling Stone. “I think I’m gonna wait until we have a better idea of how this will play out.”
NYPo, Sex doll companies trying to cash in on coronavirus
Sex doll companies have an important public service message: Self-isolating can be fun and safe at the same time.
Abyss, the maker of sex robots RealDolls, assured potential buyers that its dolls are free of COVID-19 in an Instagram post.
“Self-isolating doesn’t have to be the worst! All RealDolls are made from Platinum Grade Silicone and are naturally antibacterial and nonporous! Want one?” the company’s caption reads.
An online publication that reviews sex dolls also offered a blog post trying to combat myths regarding sex dolls and the coronavirus.
“Sex doll industries have been greatly affected as most of these products were made and delivered from China,” according to the post at realsexdollreviews.com.
Sex doll maker Silicon Wives has also tried capitalizing on the pandemic, with a giveaway contest for free sex dolls “to help with the coronavirus quarantine,” according to its website.Da Star Sex robot firm selling 'anti-bacterial' dolls for coronavirus self-isolation
“Are you stuck inside with nothing to do for the Corona virus [sic] quarantine? We’re giving away free sex dolls to ease your ‘social distancing,’” the website reads.
With scores of people facing agonising sexless spells, RealDoll told existing or potential customers that there is hope.Not until they can make a sammich.
The message on Instagram read: "Self isolating doesn’t have to be the worst. "All RealDolls are made from Platinum Grade Silicone and are naturally antibacterial and nonporous."
It follows a landmark period for RealDoll, who is unleashing a range of futuristic models onto the market.
Earlier this year it released a video of its new AI-driven dolls that convey "human expression".
Three dolls talk to the camera, explaining AI functions and then replicating the expressions.
They tell the camera: "We are AI-driven robotic dolls and we are here to become your perfect companion.
The Wombat has Rule 5 Sunday: Elle MacPherson up at The Other McCain on time and under budget.