French porn producer launches code of ethics

The code, which it hopes will be adopted by other producers in France and beyond, has been drawn up by former porn actress Liza Del Sierra alongside a sociologist and lawyer specialising in online intellectual property.

FILE: Marc Dorcel productions director Gregory Dorcel poses during a photo session in Paris, on September 25, 2019. Picture: Martin Bureau/AFP

PARIS - One of France's leading porn producers, Dorcel, announced a new code of ethics on Wednesday aimed at improving working conditions and tackling abuse in the adult film industry.

The code, which it hopes will be adopted by other producers in France and beyond, has been drawn up by former porn actress Liza Del Sierra alongside a sociologist and lawyer specialising in online intellectual property.

Among the 18 recommendations are that all adult scenes be defined in advance in contracts, no pressure placed on actors to obtain their consent, full hygiene and health precautions taken and contraception used if the actors desire, and a mediator made available to ensure they are comfortable.

It comes at a time of growing attention on abuse and sexual assault in the porn industry worldwide.

In December, the world's most popular adult site, Canada-based Pornhub, removed millions of videos following a report in the New York Times that found large numbers of underaged and sex-trafficked individuals featuring in its content.

Visa and Mastercard cut ties with the company, and last month more than 100 victims, backed by 525 non-profit organisations, asked Canadian authorities to criminally investigate the owner of Pornhub for facilitating and profiting from sexual abuses.

France has also seen problems, with one of its leading "amateur" sites, Jacquie et Michel, hit by a rape and prostitution investigation last year.

Dorcel's code of ethics was based on a survey of professionals from the industry, as well as doctors and outside associations.

"There are too many stories coming out of young women making accusations of rape, of technicians at the end of their tether," Sierra told AFP.

She said the new code was "a chance to reform the sector that has no association, nor union".

"We hope these propositions will cover all the protagonists in the French sector and overseas, and contribute to a positive evolution of the adult industry," company president Gregory Dorcel said in a statement.

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