July 28, 2017

Twelve Days of Action: Half-Way Through This Year’s Dirty Dozen List

While we’ve had a number of victories, the targets on the 2017 Dirty Dozen List have avoided changing their policies. They are still facilitating sexual exploitation.

Examples of minimal progress: Comcast promised to implement changes, but insists on still sellingNCSE_DD_AugustActionCampaignOVERALL600x_20172 extremely violent pornography. EBSCO Information Services has made some efforts to clean up their K-12 school databases, but our kids are still being exposed to sexually explicit content in schools because of their faulty products. Twitter has disabled video and photos in the hashtags most often associated with pornography and prostitution on their site, but it continues to be a hub for selling sex.

While we are grateful for some attention to these matters from these mega-corporations, it is not enough. Help us push for more! Their excuses and small steps aren’t good enough.

It’s time to turn up the heat and launch 12 days of hard-hitting action against The Dirty Dozen Sexual Exploiters!

From August 1st-12th, you have the chance to work alongside NCOSE to bring the fight anew to the companies that persist in their exploitive ways. Specifically, we’ll be reminding Amazon, Comcast, Cosmopolitan Magazine, EBSCO Information Services, Roku, and Google’s YouTube that their summer fun is not a vacation from their obligations to cut out sexual exploitation.

Each day for the 12 days, you’ll have the chance to take direct action to let each company know we have no intention of backing down, and their lack of progress is not good enough.

Here’s what you can do:

1) Amazon: August 1-2

Amazon.com features thousands of sexually explicit and pornographic items in numerous categories that do untold damage to society. These items include sexually explicit material that objectifies exploited women and children, books that are essentially sex trafficking “how-to” manuals, and eroticized photographs of child nudity. As the largest Internet-based retailer in the world, Amazon needs to clean up its act.

  • ACTION: To take action, visit this page to send an email to their executive team to tell them you’ve had enough of their sexual exploitation.

2) Comcast: August 3-4

Comcast is a major distributor of hardcore pornography. Through its on-demand videos and premium channel services, Comcast sells pornography with racist, incest, and teen themes. We have repeatedly asked Comcast to stop distributing hardcore pornography, which causes a multitude of public health harms to children and adults alike, but they have yet to do so.

  • ACTION ALERT: To take part in #CLEANUPCOMCAST, call 833-CLEANTV to tell the executives they need to stop selling pornography. The phone number goes directly to top their executives! You can also directly call two Comcast Vice Presidents, Ed Gallagher (215) 665-1700 and Justin Smith (215) 286-7011. Find a suggested call script here. 

3) Cosmopolitan Magazine: August 5-6

Cosmopolitan Magazine is a visually hypersexualized and verbally pornographic magazine. With inexhaustible predictability, Cosmo accosts shoppers with covers pronouncing dozens of recycled “sex tricks” and flaunting an endless supply of hypersexualized cover models. It relentlessly glamorizes things like public, anal, group, and violent sex to its young female readership. Despite Walmart’s supposed “policy” to cover the racy magazine, it is being sold at their checkout lanes all across America.

  • ACTION: Help us hold Walmart accountable. Visit a Walmart near you and send NCOSE a picture of uncovered Cosmopolitan magazines for sale in their checkout lanes to public@ncose.com. Feel free to post these photos online, calling out @Walmart, too!

4) EBSCO: August 7-8

EBSCO Information Services offers online library resources to most public and private schools (K-12) across America and Canada. They promise their K-12 products are age- and curriculum-appropriate, yet their tools are riddled with sexually explicit material, including easy access to hardcore pornography sites. Innocent searches provide sexually explicit results. On June 23rd, EBSCO wrote to NCOSE saying they were ‘confident’ the sexually graphic content was completely removed from their school products, but on June 26th NCOSE researchers found over 50 sexually graphic articles across 4 states in just 50 minutes of searching. The vast majority of these graphic results came directly from EBSCO’s middle school and elementary school databases.

  • ACTION: The last thing EBSCO wants is for its customers to know they are feeding porn into our children’s databases. To spread the word and stop EBSCO’s delays in fixing this problem, that is exactly what we will do. Take this information and share it with your local PTA and spread the word to other communities to mobilize the nation against pornography in our schools.

5) Roku: August 9-10

Roku, a leading media streaming company, provides its users with the ability to stream television programs, movies, music, and more on their personal devices. Roku also facilitates access to hardcore pornography channels through hundreds of private and hidden channels. This stands in sharp contrast to the policies of other streaming device industry leaders such as Apple TV or Amazon’s Fire TV, which have rightly kept hardcore pornography off of their systems.

  • ACTION: Tell Roku it needs to clean up by calling 1 (408) 556-9040 on August 9th and 10th.  Leave a message telling Roku you expect this backdoor to pornography to be removed from their devices.

6) YouTube: August 11-12

Google’s YouTube is an Internet conduit to user-generated videos where the latest cute kitten videos share a platform with hardcore pornography. Despite its strict terms of use, YouTube makes pornography and other explicit content easily accessible on the Internet, does little to monitor or restrict inappropriate content, and forces users to go through a rigorous process if they want to report the content for removal. YouTube often allows this kind of content to remain on their website to generate views and profits. It’s time to put an end to it.

  • ACTION: Create a YouTube video calling them out or sharing about your (or a friends’) experience on YouTube with sexually explicit content. Use #YouTubePornProblem in the title. Send to us at public@ncose.com.

Ben Forsgren

Ben Forsgren

Intern

Ben Forsgren is a Political and Strategy intern at the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. Ben is a senior at Brigham Young University where he is earning his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science with minors in Philosophy and International Strategy and Diplomacy. Prior to coming to NCOSE, Ben helped lead BYU’s Anti-Human Trafficking Club as an Executive Officer and was a founding member of Utah’s Trafficking in Person’s Higher Education Subcommittee. Ben’s involvement in Utah’s anti-human trafficking efforts lead him to be nominated for a Truman Scholarship for which he qualified as a finalist. In his spare time, Ben enjoys playing chess, volunteering with his church, eating out, and spending time with family.

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