Fictional character Mistress May from the Netflix series ‘Bonding’ (a bastardisation of Dominatrix sex-work) given her own verified Twitter account is a virtual slap in the face to the Adult Industry and everyone in it.
Why? Why has there been such an uproar amongst sex workers for a show that supposedly depicts their lives and careers? In short, it doesn’t.
Sex workers are constantly ignored, stigmatised or removed from social media platforms, not just for mentioning their careers but for simply existing. Simultaneously, fictional characters offering misrepresentations of a usually condemned industry are being given platforms that actual sex workers and activists need. Sex workers whose real lives have been affected by FOSTA/SESTA are advocating for change and decriminalising their work. A verified Twitter account would provide a platform for them to do this; advocate for fundamental rights and legal protection for sex workers. Instead, they are constantly punished by having their accounts deleted or shadow-banned simply for their chosen career.
It’s unfair that a fictional character can falsely represent an entire industry, be glamorised into a ‘Dominatrix Icon’ and then be given a platform much desired by genuine sex-workers who can offer a true insight into the industry and influence our community as well as advocate and campaign for changes that would drastically improve the lives and safety of both sex-workers and clients.