Website Hosting (Paid) & Domain Registrars
When setting up your own domain which is completely under your control, you use a “host” to store your files and content online. Many hosts also offer domain registration services, where you can purchase your “.com” (or any of a gazillion other extensions).
There are a TON of “adult hosting solutions” out there. You’ll ordinarily pay through the nose for hosting there as they cater to a niche market who is desperate for hosting. Don’t fall into that trap when you can host with adult friendly mainstream services.
Your very basic starter hosting plan should not cost you much more than $5 a month.
|Amerinoc – TOS- Amerinoc expects you to police yourself in accordance to your own local laws. “You are responsible for conforming to all federal, state, and local laws regarding the Internet and electronic communication.” No restrictions in reference to content other than spam.
Hostgator – TOS - Hostgator is used by many adult bloggers, but their TOS is a bit dubious, containing that catch-all word “obscene” ”Any material that, in our judgment, is obscene, threatening, illegal, or violates our terms of service in any manner may be removed from our servers (or otherwise disabled), with or without notice.”
NameCheap – Hosting TOS – Domain Reg TOS – Namecheap is another company using that grey area of “obscene” in their TOS for hosting. “web-hosting.com reserves the right to refuse Service if any of the content within, or any links from, the Your website is deemed [...] obscene, or is otherwise in breach of web-hosting.com’s AUP, in the sole and absolute opinion of web-hosting.com.” There is no mention of anything adult in their domain registration TOS.
NakedHosting / Certified Hosting – AUP – Used by a number of adult webmasters (both small and very large), they also have the “obscene” clause, but no other restrictions. “you will not [...] publish, post, upload, distribute, traffic or disseminate any defamatory, obscene, or otherwise unlawful content, such as child pornography”
GoDaddy – TOS – Used a lot because of their cheap prices, their TOS is self-explanatory. “You will not submit content or links to content that is [...] pornographic, X-rated, obscene [...] or is otherwise objectionable as determined by us in our sole and absolute discretion”
Updated to add…
Website Hosting (Free)
Freehosts in the “adult” world are typically populated by those wishing to get free pages to spam for backlinks, so the choices available are sometimes a bit crappy. With the two main players (WordPress and Blogger) now turning their backs on the adult world, the choices for quality adult freehosting is limited.
Most freehosts will limit you to using their own domain with a subdomain assigned to you (http://yoursite.hostname.com) while others will allow you to purchase your own domain name to point to it.
|Kinky-Blogging – AUP – A WordPress based blog, with the only part of their TOS that would cause me any worries is “Blogs with the primary purpose of driving traffic to affiliate programs” being on the not allowed list, but “people writing their own original book, movie or game reviews and linking them to Amazon, or people linking to their own products on Etsy do NOT fall into this category.”
Red Light Host – TOS – Their TOS is very open, making me believe that there is little to no restriction on content at all. Their only mention of what you cannot have on their site is “[s]ites that exploit images of children under 18 years of age.” This may be a site where those taboo niches can survive.
Nibblebit – TOS – They allow adult content, but you need to label your blog as containing adult content. They have the standard restricton on CP, but also include beast. “We allow users to upload and post legal adult content. The blog MUST be rated as Adult.”
WordPress.com – Mature Content TOS – While they say they do “do permit mature content on WordPress.com”, there are a whole schlew of caveats, including no links to “adult-oriented affiliate networks“, no “explicit sexual materials that can be considered pornographic” and no links to sex worker sites.
Blogger / Blogspot- Content Policy - Even though they “do allow adult content on Blogger“, it also says “Do not use Blogger as a way to make money on adult content.” Clear as mud, right?
Livejournal – TOS - Another no-naked zone. “LiveJournal reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to suspend any Account, remove any Content, and/or restrict access to any part of the Service that contains full nudity, violence, obscenity…”
Video Sharing Sites
A lot of bloggers and sex toy reviewers like to create video content to go along with their posts, but for what ever reason can’t “host” the video on their own site. Video sharing sites allow you to upload your content to their sites and insert it into your posts.
Unfortunately, the most popular ones are not adult friendly! Another option that many sex bloggers use are what are called “tube” sites – free porn platforms where the users upload their own videos.
|Vine – TOS – The 6 second “micro-video-blogging” platform has no restriction on their content as long as it’s not harassing, abusive, spam – the normal “don’t do that kind of crap” list. Nothing mentioned about obscenities.
YouTube – Community Guidelines – While sex toys seem to be safe, sexual nudity and the like aren’t. “YouTube is not for pornography or sexually explicit content.”
Daily Motion – Prohibited - No sex allowed! “any sexually explicit content (including but not limited to images of rape, bestiality, intercourse, masturbation, sadistic or masochistic abuse, explicit depiction of male or female genitalia or pubic areas, pedophilia or necrophilia)”
Whether you’re sharing images, words, videos or sound, social media is the way to do it. With the gazillions of SM options out there, you also get the huge span of what’s allowed and what is not.
Here are the more popular options – both adult friendly social media outlets and those that are not – for your sharing needs.
Now, with social media accounts, you may find that there are a number of accounts that violate TOS and AUP agreements that stay on for years. With large networks, they usually rely on users reporting material that goes against the rules. So if you’re among like minded people, you may survive. But – as always, when going against the TOS – be ready to have your account canned at a moment’s notice.
|Twitter - The Twitter Rules – Twitter seems to allow most adult text. They do ask that you set your settings to advise others your images may contain sexual content if you tweet adult images. Another TOS states that you cannot “use obscene or pornographic images in either your profile photo, header photo, or user background.” (Although ads in the “Adult sexual products and services” niche have some restrictions.)
Tumblr – Adult Content – Tumblr allows adult, but with a few restrictions. Tumblr blogs that are flagged as “NSFW” are only searchable if the user is logged in, and is browsing in safe mode. “If your blog contains nudity, mature or adult-oriented content, please respect the choices of the people in our community and flag your blog NSFW from your Settings page.” They also tend to have a heavy hand when it comes to how much “spam” they will tolerate through affiliate linking.
Facebook – Community Standards – Facebook still hates nakedness, but it doesn’t seem to mind images of sex toys or promotion of erotica. “Facebook has a strict policy against the sharing of pornographic content and any explicitly sexual content where a minor is involved. We also impose limitations on the display of nudity.”
Pinterest – AUP - Pinterest is very hit-and-miss when it comes to their takedowns. Their AUP states “you agree not to post User Content that [...] is sexually explicit or pornographic“. My personal experience is that this even covers realistic sex toys (ie porn star molded dildos).
Google+ – Policy - Another no sex zone! “Do not distribute content that contains nudity, graphic sex acts, or sexually explicit material. Do not drive traffic to commercial pornography sites. Your Profile Picture cannot include mature or offensive content. For example, do not use a photo that is a close-up of a person’s buttocks or cleavage.“
Payment Processors / E-Wallets
Getting paid for adult work can sometimes be difficult if you’re unable to take wires or bank transfers. Most adult friendly payment systems have what are called “e-wallets” (kind of like virtual bank accounts – but definitely NOT a bank account) as well as cards that can be loaded and used like a pre-paid debit card. Always do LOTS of research on these before you start using them and never leave money in them for very long if you can help it.
In full disclosure, I don’t use any of these services listed, as I am able to receive payments other ways (like checks, wires, and bank transfers).
|Payoneer – TOS pdf – Payoneer’s TOS is a bit difficult to get to. You actually have the start the process of a signup before you’re prompted to tick off the “Agree to terms” box. While it is one of the most widely used adult payment processors, there’s a line in their TOS that sends up some red flags. “you will not accept payments in connection with the following activities, items or services: [...] Obscene or pornographic items, adult businesses or adult related services, including escort services, adult massage, or other adult-entertainment services, adult performer regardless of sexual orientation [...]” I’m reading that as sex work, but you may want to discuss your particular business with a Payoneer rep before you start using their service.
Paxum – TOS – Paxum doesn’t list any adult related restrictions in their TOS, other than the standard “activities that violate any law, statute, ordinance, contract or regulation“. From my communications with webmasters, they are the more difficult company to deal with, as far as needing to provide identity documents before opening an account, as well as customer support knowledge. (I have no personal experience with them.) As I suggest with all e-wallet solutions, withdraw your money as soon as you can to prevent any possible issues and do not treat it as a bank account.
Bitcoins – While this isn’t a “payment processor” per se, it’s a way that you can get paid for services under the radar of most institutions, if that is your main goal. Bitcoins can literally be used to pay for anything – legal or otherwise. You’ll need to set up a Bitcoin wallet and convert your local currency into Bitcoins so you know what to charge.
Paypal – TOS - Their TOS forbids “items that are considered obscene” and “certain sexually oriented materials or services” which is as clear as mud. The “rule of thumb” that is followed by most in the adult industry is that physical goods are alright (payments in exchange for sex toys, DVDs, hard drives, etc) but not for non-physical goods (website memberships, computer files [including images and written content], ad space, services etc.) aren’t. This isn’t the end all be all, as we know what happened with Paypal and erotica last year. IMO – too risky to use, unless you know what you are doing.
Filed under: Ruby Goodnight Writing
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