Tony Ortega Defends Village Voice Classifieds Backpage. Says The Victims Are The Problem.

 

 

 

Making money off the backs of desperate human beings and homeless children, by allowing them to be exploited for modern-day sex slavery is not a problem for Tony Ortega.

After months of protests on human trafficking against the Village Voice classifieds section Backpage with regards to the child sex trafficking, which included  the voices of Alcia Keys, Ashton Kutcher, Demi Moore, REM, and Roseanne Cash . Tony Ortega took aim at a target and unleashed a violent torrent of verbal assaults at CNN’s Amber Lyons in defense of Backpage, the classified’s section of the Village Voice, where he is the editor in chief.  Also known as the head honcho under Mike Lacey.

During the tirade he excluded the words “child sex trafficking” and used the phrase “underage prostitutes”.   Positioning the victims as simply prostitutes that had not yet come of age. As if prostitution is a pre existing condition in their fate.

He pounded the phrase “underage” into the ground over and over in his version of events.  His justifications?   Backpage is the Red Cross, and the victims are “A persistent problem in this country”.  If they exist at all. Furthermore, they are the “users of the service. Most drug addicted and homeless”.  And, it is easier to find them when they are being sold on the Internet by their traffickers than if they are at bus stations!

So, all in all, Backpage is helping the community by providing a platform for them to be sold. Furthermore, they are not children.  They are underage prostitutes.    And “sex work” can be an honorable profession for a minor. It is just not shown in a positive light.

“In cities across America, we are told over and over, like a mantra, that “100,000 to 300,000” underage sex slaves have been stashed away from public view, with more joining them every day.

Not only do we have security specialists making constant searches for keywords that might indicate an underage user, but we’re quick to cooperate with law enforcement and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children when we find suspicious ads.”   Tony Oretega    July 06, 2011  In defense of Backpage. Village Voice classifieds.

NOTE: At the time of this retort defending Village Voice Classifieds Backpage, According to Advanced Interactive Media Group, an online classified advertising consultancy, 70 per cent of the nation’s online ads for adult services (read, prostitution) run on Backpage.com.

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) viewed Backpage as so tightly tied to the sale of children for rape that the website is now the first place it searches for children reported missing. In a 2016 amicus brief, the organization outlined the ways in which it believes that Backpage has been deliberately optimized to keep the child trafficking industry going, including having relaxed posting rules for escort ads while requiring other sellers to provide valid telephone numbers. It also describes a case in which one child was “sold for sex more than 50 times on backpage.com beginning when she was 12 years old.” The organization has worked on more than 420 cases in which children were trafficked through Backpage.

In the three years prior:  At least 50 charges of trafficking had been filed by state attorneys general against people advertising on Backpage.com. It was estimated that 100,000 to 250,000 children in the U.S. are trafficked each year.

Village Voice Media (Mike Lacey, James Larkin, Tony Ortega and Liz McDougall) insisted it was fighting trafficking by editing out code words for minors like “fresh” and “new to town” – to make the ads look quote “cleaner than ever” ….But congressional investigators found Backpage was actively allowing the traffickers to operate, and knowingly editing the advertisements to facilitate the sex trafficking of children, and pocketing the ad revenue.

“In some cases, our reports about suspicious ads have resulted in underage runaways being traced and recovered—as opposed to the underground economy of bus stations and street corners where kids are truly invisible.

Underage prostitution is a persistent problem in this country, but as we established in last week’s cover story, it exists at a level that is nothing like what is being trumpeted by Amber Lyon on the behalf of activists who want to put us out of business. Lyon and other journalists—even the New York Times—may repeat uncritically the figure of “100,000 to 300,000” underage prostitutes, but as we showed last week, that number is based on a flimsy study by a couple of activist professors who included in that figure runaways (most of whom are back home in a week) and any teen who happens to live near an international border, supposedly putting them “at risk.”

Using official law enforcement data, we showed that underage prostitution arrests are closer to 800 per year for the entire country—a number that has not increased over the past decade. Far from a widespread and rapidly growing problem, this is, instead, a small problem that stays about the same size because its underlying causes—drug addiction and teen homelessness—are not targeted with federal funds the way scaremongering is.

In December, we sent information to CNN about what we’re doing to keep Backpage.com‘s adult pages for adults only as Amber Lyon prepared a sensationalistic piece about the mythic hundreds of thousands of underage American sex slaves, for whom she wanted us to appear responsible.

We subsequently pointed out to CNN that we had, in fact, provided Lyon with a two-page, single-spaced data sheet about what we’re doing to keep underage users out of Backpage.com‘s adult pages.

She talks to men who are undergoing counseling for paying for sex—none of them with underage girls. Each of these segments is intended simply to make viewers see sex work in the worst possible light. And that’s no accident.

Tony Ortega    In defense of Backpage .   Village Voice classifieds. Editor in Chief Village Voice    July 06, 2011

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/cnns-amber-lyon-ambushed-craigslist-but-she-wont-talk-to-the-village-voice-6431659

NOTE: For the record, there is no such thing as an “underage prostitute” .  Minors are trafficking victims.  There is no such thing as a child prostitute. By definition & law, minors are trafficked.

Ortega says Village Voice has always had classifieds. True, when it was a local newspaper, not a web site.  Before it went digital and spread out across the planet.

“I helped turn a weekly newspaper with a web site into a digital enterprise.”  Tony Ortega bragged to the New York Times Blog Media Decoder on September 14, 2012 after leaving the Village Voice.

https://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/14/at-village-voice-editor-and-music-editor-depart-and-weekly-will-have-a-new-address/

News broke within days after Ortega was let go, ( The Village Voice was sold )that Lacey and Larkin had sold the failing Village Voice Newspaper, but split Backpage from the sale and kept it.  Their arrest warrant claim that Lacey and Larkin each received a $10 million “bonus” in 2014 — before the sale.

Tony Ortega’s former co worker Bob Norman, from the New Times Broward Palm Beach (Also owned by Mike Lacey and James Larkin) says Tony Ortega is well known for his love of “erotica” ( writing , pictures or films to stimulate sexual desire / pornographic books, pictures, considered stylish or sophisticated )  So perhaps Ortega is viewing through a jaded different lens.

http://www.journalnow.com/opinion/editorials/our-view-human-trafficking-is-a-scourge-we-must-stop/article_b626a0ba-77af-5193-b64e-28e969e73f27.html

Current campaigns challenging Ortega’s declarations:

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hlsgrl

http://www.iamjanedoefilm.com

The Gawker Archives – Village Voice Media Asked to Make Up Lie About ‘Monitoring’ Its Hooker Site

Gawker was an American blog founded by Nick Denton and Elizabeth Spiers and based in New York City focusing on celebrities and the media industry. It was launched in January 2003.

Whereas the Village Voice was a paper for newly minted New Yorkers, meaning people that moved into New York with identity issues and bought the Paper to “be cool”,  the Gawker was a blog for New Yorkers.

The Gawker closed down in 2016 after thirteen years. The blog never catered to advertisers or “sold out”  for greed.  I was a regular reader and found it to be a straight forward New York smart blog.

I have had some difficulty lately finding certain issues they published.  As if the archives are being scrubbed.  If you follow any sequence at the Web Site you will notice some pages “Can’t be found”.

This has been frustrating me since I considered the reporting from that blog valuable information.   So being, I am taking the liberty to share some of the articles here for the purpose of preservation.

Village Voice Media Asked to Make Up Lie About ‘Monitoring’ Its Hooker Site

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08/31/11 02:22PM

Filed to: MEDIA ROUNDUP

In your merciless Wednesday media column: attorneys general come after Backpage.com, a photo editor bravely falls on his sword, a new CFO at NewsBeast, Conde Nast figures out the internets, and the amusing NYT-Yahoo rumor.

  • The attorneys general of 45 states have sent a letter to Village Voice Media regarding its Craigslist knockoff Backpage.com, asking the company “to prove it is monitoring the site to prevent illegal activity.” Haha, what? Then nobody would put their ads there! Stupid idiots. Also most state attorneys general are big Ashton Kutcher fans.

Permanent Subcommittee Senate Hearings On Investigations – Findings On Backpage

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After an 18-month long bipartisan investigation, which cost United States taxpayers millions upon millions of dollars, The Senate Subcommittee on Investigations released the following stunning report.

You can watch the live senate hearing with testimony here:

https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/subcommittees/investigations/hearings/human-trafficking-investigation

For more than twenty months, the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations investigated the problem of online child sex trafficking.

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The investigation led the Subcommittee to focus on Backpage.com, the leading online marketplace for commercial sex.  Operating in 97 countries and 943 locations worldwide—and last valued at more than a half-billion dollars—Backpage is the world’s second-largest classified advertising website.

 

Backpage is involved in 73% of all child trafficking reports that the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) receives from the general public (excluding reports by Backpage itself).  

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The National Association of Attorneys General has aptly described Backpage as a “hub” of “human trafficking, especially the trafficking of minors.”

 

This report contains three principal findings.  First, Backpage has knowingly concealed evidence of criminality by systematically editing its “adult” ads.  As early as 2006, Backpage executives began instructing staff responsible for screening ads (known as “moderators”) to edit the text of adult ads to conceal the true nature of the underlying transaction.

https://www.portman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/files/serve?File_id=5D0C71AE-A090-4F30-A5F5-7CFFC08AFD48

Witness and victim testimony found here: 

http://www.hsgac.senate.gov/search/?q=backpage&search-button=Search&access=p&as_dt=i&as_epq=&as_eq=&as_lq=&as_occt=any&as_oq=&as_q=&as_sitesearch=&client=hsgac&sntsp=0&filter=0&getfields=&lr=&num=15&numgm=3&oe=UTF8&output=xml_no_dtd&partialfields=&proxycustom=&proxyreload=0&proxystylesheet=default_frontend&requiredfields=&sitesearch=&sort=date%3AD%3AS%3Ad1&start=0&ud=1

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Watch hearing live here:

https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/subcommittees/investigations/hearings/human-trafficking-investigation

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Rep. Joe Kennedy III

 

“From its earliest days, the Village Voice has run adult classifieds. Today, those classifieds are hosted online at Backpage.com.”  Tony Ortega June 29, 2011

“We’re being told that there’s a widespread, growing and out-of-control problem to fear in our country. And it has a catchy name: ‘trafficking,’” wrote Tony Ortega, editor-in-chief of The Village Voice, in an editorial last year. “The actual data behind this ‘epidemic’ is wanting in the extreme. It involves guesses by activist professors, junk science by nonprofit groups trying to extract money from Congress, and manipulation by religious groups hiding their real agendas about sex work.” Tony Ortega July 06, 2011

“Backpage exists solely so that people can freely express themselves—sometimes in ways that make other people uncomfortable. We’re First Amendment extremists that way. Always have been.”  Tony Ortega July 06 2011

“I helped turn a weekly newspaper with a Web site into a digital enterprise.” Tony Ortega Former editor in chief of the Village Voice brags to Media Decoder @ N.Y. Times Sept 14 2012

Know more.  http://www.iamjanedoefilm.com

 

Complete Findings On Senate Investigation Into Backpage.com

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Below is the senate findings, statistics, and other relevant data discovered on Backpage.com human trafficking .

It has cost the taxpayers of America millions of dollars to investigate and discover the criminality behind the Village Voice giveaway paper.  Prior to it’s separation from backpage.com late 2012.

https://www.portman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/files/serve?File_id=fd56bb15-565e-4af4-9f4f-736d083917c5

http://www.iamjanedoefilm.com

New York City’s Disgrace. BOOM! Tony Ortega’s Backpage Promotional Material Attested To Having 14 Year Old Girls In Stock , For Sale.

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“I AM JANE DOE” TAKES ON TONY ORTEGA of VILLAGE VOICE BACKPAGE

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Mother Opens Up About Finding Her Missing 14-Year-Old Daughter In the Escort Section Of Classified Ad Website Backpage.

A mother has spoken out after finding her missing teenage daughter being sex trafficked on classified advertising website, Backpage.  The adult classifieds section of the Village Voice.

Kubiiki Pride’s 14-year-old daughter had been missing for nine months in 2009 until one night she found the girl while scrolling on the ‘escorts’ section.

Pride said she had been up at 4.30am desperately searching for her daughter when she made the discovery.

After finding her daughter’s picture among other listings, Pride has opened up about ‘one of the most painful experiences’ she has faced, saying her daughter is ‘still broken’.

The documentary filmmaker Mary Mazzio interviewed some of the more than a hundred thousand American children who are being trafficked. Both Pride and her daughter are interviewed.

I will continue to be at every theater opening through April, 2017. 

I AM JANE DOE  chronicles the epic battle that several American mothers are waging on behalf of their middle-school daughters, victims of sex-trafficking on Backpage.com, the adult classifieds section that for years was part of the Village Voice. 

Reminiscent of Erin Brockovich and Karen Silkwood, these mothers have stood up on behalf of thousands of other mothers, fighting back and refusing to take no for an answer.

It is a gut-wrenching human story and fresh look at a social and legal issue that affects every community in America.

 I am Jane Doe  (and/or Backpage – The Aftermath)

 

ABOUT THE FILM

NARRATED BY

Academy-Award Nominee

Jessica Chastain

DIRECTED BY

Award-winning Director

Mary Mazzio

PRODUCED BY

Mary Mazzio

&

Academy-Award Nominee

Alec Sokolow

“a gripping legal thriller”  – Esquire

“a powerful call to action” – The Los Angeles Times

“a viscerally emotional case” – The Washington Post

“especially impressive… a powerful piece of work” – Elle

“striking… powerful”  – The Film Journal

 

 

 

50% of all profits will be donated to organizations which serve Jane Doe children

http://www.iamjanedoefilm.com/

Dates previewed thus far

FEBRUARY 10-23

OPENED IN SELECT AMC THEATERS

New York, Los Angeles, Washington DC, Boston, Seattle, Philadephia

MARCH 17-23

OPENED IN PHOENIX AZ

Harkins Theater – Camelview at Fashion Square 14

Phoenix AZ

MARCH 1

OTHER CITIES – SEE DATES PAGE

If you wish to host a screening, please email us at office@50eggs.com.

Reviews and Press

http://eclipsemagazine.com/i-am-jane-doe-sexual-slavery-of-children-in-america/

http://www.bostonherald.com/entertainment/movies/2017/02/mazzio_s_jane_doe_shines_light_on_child_sex_trafficking

New Documentary I Am Jane Doe Focuses on Victims’ Fight Against Online Child Sex Trafficking

http://www.vogue.com/article/child-sex-trafficking-documentary-i-am-jane-doe

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/we-are-all-jane-doethe-high-cost-of-protecting-child_us_589dc600e4b080bf74f03b11

 You can watch the entire film here:

http://get-flix.net/movie/430448/I-AM-JANE-DOE.html

Will be streaming on Netflix shortly.

 

 

Backpage “exists solely so that people can freely express themselves—sometimes in ways that make other people uncomfortable. We’re First Amendment extremists that way. Always have been.”  Tony Ortega

What a crafty way to describe your occupation as a digital pimp. Profiting off the misery of women and children.