>Chronicling a kerfuffle

>We were traipsing through San Francisco ourselves when we heard the news that Kink.com had purchased the city’s long-abandoned armory building for the tidy sum of $14.5 million, with the intent of spiffing it up and turning it into a production center for works both pornographic and indie. How lovely!, we thought – then turned our attention back to determining which weekend activities we’d pursue in a metropolis so apparently teeming with sex-positive joie de vivre.

But that sale has, in the words of the New York Times anyway, turned into a bit of a kerfuffle, with a group of neighborhood activists sounding the alarm – “The new owner said they would create jobs. But what kind of jobs are we talking about here?” (It should be noted that the NYT article also mentions that activist challenges, over various concerns, have helped keep the building empty for the past three decades.)

And this week the kerfuffle went meta, as Violet Blue, who, among other things is a sex columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, took on exhibited by her own employer.

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From her column this week:

But the most interesting example was the presentation of unchallenged material in the form of quotes from people on the street as anti-porn pundits — with no weigh-in from pro-porn pundits. Protesters were quoted as saying, “This neighborhood is already plagued with enough violence and prostitution as it is” and “Kink degrades the neighborhood, degrades women and offers ‘dead end’ jobs that no decent person would want.” Such statements bracket the piece — with no counter-opinions about pornography — and are presented in such a way that readers could interpret opinions as fact. Kink.com was indeed quoted — but only about their use of the space.

As to those jobs that “no decent person would want”? A few employees have weighed in on the matter on the Kink.com website’s press page.


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