Wednesday, May 25, 2016

What I Wish I had Known Before Starting Porn by Kitty Stryker

I started in porn later than most folks I know- I was 26-27 at the time, practically ancient by sex work standards! I had been around the block a few times, and had done other forms of sex work, so I wasn’t completely naive when I started. I knew how to do basic marketing, how to assess work situations, and how to budget my money. Having an idea about how to be a professional in the world of sex work certainly helped me when I expanded into porn.
Still, I didn’t know everything. One area I wish I had known more about would be online privacy. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has a decent guide up on some privacy measures sex workers can take to protect themselves, small measures that can make it difficult for a rabid fan or a radical feminist uncovering your legal name, where you live, or your day job info. Another excellent and detailed guide can be found here. Online privacy is something easy to forget about, but also very important to remember to prevent an impact on your life!
I also didn’t know very much about trade shoots. I might have avoided some issues had I known to consider whether the balance of marketability was fair. Thankfully, Jiz Lee has written a fantastic guide on how to keep trade shoots as balanced as possible while also getting everyone what they want! Thinking about spelling out who has rights to sell what and where when making porn is very useful for making sure that your business dealings are positive experiences.
I also wish I had known a little more about being less trusting. The first couple of shoots I did were with a porn star who was more established than I was, and I was a bit starry eyed. Unfortunately, she abused that power, not just with me but other performers- she didn’t pay us, she didn’t give us our footage, she spread rumors about us to each other to keep us from talking and connecting the dots about her manipulative behavior. Now, I ensure that everything is written down in a contract, that all content has been shared as soon as possible (preferably the day of the shoot), and that I take all “advice” with a grain of salt!

I think those are the three areas that I wish I had gotten some more advice in before going into porn. Now I’m glad to share that info with other folks so they can avoid making the same mistakes I did.

Written by Kitty Stryker
Follow on twitter @KittyStryker
Read More from Kitty Stryker at KittyStryker.com/blog