This is a really good piece on the relationship sex workers have with time. What I find really interesting is how the author is aware of the stress caused by the commoditisation of time. It’s really thoughtful. I obviously think that it is important to start exploring sex work and time, given my research area, but actually there are many other forms of work for which this is relevant. There are much more informal jobs and casual contracts which emphasise the worth of time and also the insecurity or precariousness of work.
It also raises interesting and very worthwhile questions about consent and how this influences, and is influenced by, time as a commodity. Time is sold, but there are many boundaries in place for what can and cannot happen during that time. It is usually the responsibility of the sex worker to communicate these boundaries. And it points to the use of online advertising sites in a sex workers’ ability to manage the clients’ expectations as well as the sex worker’s safety.
Something that I have been very interested in during my research is how the service sold changes how time is experienced. For example, if a sex worker offers GFE during the time, does she have a different experience to when she sells a ‘quickie’ service. Does it warp the way she feels the time passing. Does the time go quicker if the sex worker gives a service that she enjoys, for instance? That’s just one example, and probably a bad one, but this article definitely touches upon these ideas about sex work and a sex worker’s relationship with time.
It’s usual for sites where sex workers advertise to put a disclaimer along the lines of “any money paid is for the time and companionship of the escorts on this site”. I have absolutely no idea if legally it holds any water, but it mentions one of the core ways sex work is organised (in the UK at least) and that is time.
Within the public consciousness there are a lot of misconceptions around sex work, and the biggest may be that clients pay for services, as in a guy comes along, asks for a blow job and is given the price. Various, fake, brothel menus, are circulated which directly link services and price, and reinforce this idea. (I am aware that in some countries services and price are linked, and for many street workers, however I am writing from my experience of indoor independent sex work, the issues of…
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