Madigan targets Craigslist ads

By Chris Rizo | Apr 30, 2009

Lisa Madigan (D)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (Legal Newsline)-Craigslist ought to remove the online classified Web site's erotic services section because of illegal activity, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said.

The Democratic attorney general called the Craigslist section "rampant" with prostitution and "exploitation of women."

Madigan is just the latest attorney general to call on craigslist to remove the erotic personals section, following the slaying of a 25-year-old masseuse who had posted an advertisement there about two weeks ago.

In a letter to the company, Madigan said Craigslist is flouting the terms of a November 2008 agreement it signed with the attorneys general of 43 states.

The multistate agreement called for the creation of an electronic screening system to prevent posting of certain advertisements, language and images that violate Craigslist's terms of use.

Madigan said the screening system has not been very effective.

"While there has been an approximately 40 percent decrease in daily postings, more than 400 ads are posted daily in Chicago alone," she wrote, adding that "the vast majority of ads blatantly violate even the most basic terms of use."

For his part, Craigslist co-founder Craig Newmark has said has no plans to take down the site's erotic services section.

From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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