Adult Performers Claim Netflix Is Engaging In Exact Behavior New Series Aims To Expose
Netflix's new documentary series, Hot Girls Wanted: Turned On, investigates the exploitation of [...]
Netflix's new documentary series, Hot Girls Wanted: Turned On, investigates the exploitation of adult performers in the pornography industry for monetary gain, which performers are now accusing the show's producers of doing themselves.
Gia Paige is one of the most prominent performers accusing Netflix of exploitation, who stars in adult videos and performs webcam sessions.
One episode of the series focused on Paige's ex-fiancé, Hussie Models owner Riley Reynolds, and depicts the couple going to a butterfly sanctuary together, as well as their visit to get tested for HIV. At one point in the episode, the producers even show Paige's personal Facebook account, revealing her legal first and last name.
Although Paige initially gave her consent to appear in the series, she began having second thoughts when the show's producers started prying into her family life. When Paige asked to have her consent revoked, the show's producers agreed to cut her from the episode on the basis that they'd be allowed to film more footage with Reynolds' parents.
Using Paige's likeness might be morally dubious, but legally, Netflix looks like they're covered. The consent form Paige signed granted the producers the "irrevocable right to film, tape, photograph and record" her and the right to use her "actual or fictitious names, voice, likeness and any biographical facts."
Sadly, this is far from the only incident of performers involved with the series being taken advantage of.
Effy Elizabeth and Autumn Kay perform a series together that appears exclusively on Periscope and Twitter, which makes it more difficult to track down, in hopes of friends or family members stumbling across the adult content. In one episode, Hot Girls Wanted showed one of their clips without asking for permission to use their likeness or even notify them, merely as a courtesy.
The duo learned that their image was used in the series when a friend alerted them to it, resulting in Kay reaching out to the series' official Twitter account in hopes of answers. The account offered the following response to the matter:
@AspenFoxxx @hotgirlswanted Not even an apology for the possibility of outting us. pic.twitter.com/v5SBvHUxVN— △⃒⃘McGanjagall (@_autumnkayy) April 22, 2017
Considering the difficulties of stumbling across adult material on Twitter and Periscope, having their clips broadcast in a massive streaming service like Netflix meant that distant relatives could easily identify her, as she revealed to Vocativ.prevnext
Many of these issues fall into a grey area of what's legal and what's ethical, but there have been other reports of much more blatant disregard to either of those areas.
The original Hot Girls Wanted film was widely panned by the porn industry, as it conveyed the notion that a tiny element of the porn industry represented sex workers as a whole. In hopes of getting adult performers involved in the new series, the show's producers said the project had to connection to the original film, as well as the original film's producer, Rashida Jones, not being involved in the series. Both of these claims are factually incorrect.
The Free Speech Coalition, which advocates for the rights of sex workers, has requested that Netflix halts the distribution of the series. The association released the following statement:
"Privacy is a huge issue for performers, and in direct correlation to their personal and physical safety. Many performers face daily threats of harassment and violence from over-zealous fans and stalkers, and many are stigmatized for the work they do by families and communities. Paradoxically, this series may have made the lives of the workers featured in it substantially less safe by increasing the visibility and accessibility of their private information, such as birth names, and by broadcasting images without consent, and without regard to how that might affect these performers."prevnext
Producers Jill Bauer and Ronna Gradus, however, revealed that Paige never spoke to them about being excluded from the series. Additionally, Gradus says that Kay and Elizabeth have brought more attention to themselves briefly appearing in the series by vocally speaking out against it across social media.
"They saw themselves, and then on Twitter, as themselves, using their own handles, tweeted out, 'Oh my God, we're on Netflix. Oh my God nobody told us. Oh my God, we're sex workers and they've just shown us on Netflix.' We didn't know who they were. We never would have known, the viewers never would have known, unless they themselves identified themselves," Gradus explained to Variety.
Kay and Elizabeth's appearance in the show is within a montage of the current "selfie-obsessed" culture of social media, possibly misrepresenting the pair. Gradus says that it's a "fair question" to wonder if they're trying to boost their notoriety by reminding their followers of the controversy.
Gradus also said the clip used in the series doesn't clearly identify Kay as a sex worker, despite it showing her in a skimpy outfit and shaking her butt at the camera.
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