Syphilis Watch 2012 by Jessica Drake

The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various contributors on this web site does not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of and Michael Fattorosi nor should they be considered legal advice.

Re-posted with permission. Written by Jessica Drake. First posted here on August 29, 2012

i have procrastinated writing this blog.

not the usual kind of procrastinating i do, like neglecting to rifle through a year’s worth of paperwork to locate two missing bank statements for my accountant. the kind of procrastinating that i employ when i cannot bear to face something so large looming right over my shoulder breathing down my back. there’s an elephant in the room, a monster under the bed, but guess what? the elephant has a name now, and the monster isn’t hiding anymore.

as i’m sure most of you have heard, a performer tested positive for syphilis recently. though incredibly rare- i’ve never known of a single case since i’ve been in the industry- that in itself was no crime. what was a crime, however, is the fact that he (by his OWN admission) altered at least one test and did several scenes while he was positive. let that sink in for a moment.

that act was done with blatant disregard for EVERYONE in the industry. even the people he didn’t have sex with. because of his actions, we are shut down until we understand the scope of this outbreak. talent cannot work. our crews cannot work. shoots have been cancelled, permits unused, locations unbooked- all at a great cost to everyone. being that he has been in our industry for 18 plus years, i am sure he understands now the consequences of his action, but that doesn’t change the fact that the damage is done, and we are all paying the price.

i know how people in the business feel, it’s been the topic of conversation since the news broke. there is a lot of anger, and rightfully so. in addition to that, we also must face the mainstream media who relish in the sensationalism of exposing more of the evils of pornography. from the LA Times, to the Huffington Post, from CNN to every lurker on Twitter, they are watching us duke it out in public forums with each other, adding fuel to the already rapidly spreading fire. the condom debate has been drawing to a close, and with the initiative on the ballot in a few months, it seems this is the proverbial final nail in the coffin.

whose fault is this?

it’s easy to simply push it all onto the guilty party who forged a test so he could continue working, but let’s take a look at his reasoning to understand the REAL issue.

he faked a test to keep WORKING. why? did he really need the money that much? did he truly have no other source of income? no fall-back money? after all that time in the business?

it’s greed. GREED. coupled with deceit, greed is crippling the adult industry. just like the crash of the housing market, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, just like the (many) big banking scandals, it’s happening to us. in big ways and in small ways. it happens when performers undercut one another to be the one that is hired for the scene. it’s about the companies who only care about selling more content to stay afloat. the male performer showed up to a booking with a second stage syphilis rash (note- it has not yet been proven that he knew he was infected with syphilis at this point, but the pictures taken on set that day speak VOLUMES) he was wrong for showing up like that, the girl he worked with was wrong to work with him, the director/camera man was wrong to shoot him, and the company was wrong for editing and using the scene on their website. no, i will NOT post the photo gallery of the scenes, but it IS out there. yes, internet piracy has crippled us, that is indisputable. it’s a self-destructive circle.

i walked off the set once many, many years ago when i was brand new to the industry because a potential scene partner had shown up with a questionable bump on his manhood. i didn’t need the money that much, and i never will.

Performers- RESPECT YOURSELF. you only have one body, one life, one chance at this. you are worth more than whatever you are being paid for the scene.

we have failed as an industry. we have failed to take care of one another- at least that is how it appears to the outside world. we have (HE has) by example, shown that we cannot prevent things like this from happening…and by failing to successfully apply constraints, we have opened ourselves up to having those constraints forcibly applied by people that will never understand our industry. i do not want that to happen. now, more than ever, we need to forge ahead and unite to preserve our freedom to work in this industry…the industry that i still love and will continue to defend and protect.


2 thoughts on “Syphilis Watch 2012 by Jessica Drake

  1. First of all, this incident is horrible and beyond any point of plea. But one thing is always interesting. As soon as something happens everyone starts to talk about “the industry”. Jessica Drake is right when she blames the lack of responsibility of some workers of this industry and stigmatizes the greed, BUT in my opinion there isn’t something like a pooled industry. We have performers, assistants, agents, companies, health centers, etc. and everyone wants to make a profitable cut out of the business. The perception that the industry is a self-regulating organism is absolutely wrong, because EVERYONE can make porn EVERYWHERE. So it’s a pure illusion, to identify an “industry” with “we” and to think that it could “take care of one another”. Another point is the general insecurity for the members of this “industry”. Are there big chances to proceed in this industry for a real, long-timed career? NO; is there a labor union that advocates, counsels and protects the performers in cases of inoccupation or exploitation? NO; are there standardized fees for performances? NO; Are there health centers that test for intoxication (and by that I mean the really hard drugs!)? NO. I could go on and on and on, but the point is very simple. In times of great disturbances everyone moves together and evokes the unity of the whole industry, but when there is daily routine the MOST important thing discussed is MONEY . The Free Speech Coalition fights against censorship and piracy (a good thing!), but health and sanitary prevention are only issues, when there is a concrete danger for earning this money. We should not forget, that the (I’m sorry for this unemotional expression), “commodity” porn actor/tress, has a very short durability and that’s one of the most important reasons, that so many members of this industry, want to maximize their profits (in this partially really short time) at an expense of their own and others security/wellbeing. So I can agree with Ms. Drake, when she blames the greed for much misconduct, but the greed is just a manifestation of the reluctance willingness of the performers, assistants, agents, companies, health centers, etc. or in short the “industry” to give a further perspective to its workers!


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