The Internet has transformed the world’s oldest profession. Male and female sex work­ers are increasingly operating independently through individual websites. For example, by 2011 approximately 83% of sex workers in New York City advertised their ser­vices on Facebook (Venkatesh, 2011). The sex worker and customer negotiate through e-mail, which eliminates the need for part of the prostitute’s fees to go to website com­panies, pimps, or brothels (Reynolds, 2006).

Whether working through a company or an individual website, sex workers on the Internet have far safer and less oppressive working conditions than other sex workers. While arrests of Internet sex workers are uncommon, the Internet does provide easy leads for arrest by police posing as customers (Linskey, 2006). The Internet has also created an easy and accessible venue for the commercial sexual exploitation of children (Saar, 2010), as discussed further in the next section.