NY Times: Don't Blame the Porn Industry for Bad Jobs Numbers

Despite this unsatisfactory level of unemployment, The New York Times knows how to be cheeky. The newest numbers showed a large drop in motion picture jobs. Don’t blame the pornographers, wrote Catherine Rampell in an “Economix” blog post.

"The pornography industry, long accustomed to being a scapegoat for the country’s moral ills, is now being blamed for America’s economic failings, too." Get out the world's smallest violin.

Rampell wasn't alone. Jim Tankersley at The Washington Post Wonkblog briefly flirted with this theory, too. Both were talked out of it by Josh Barro at Business Insider.

"Some have attributed the job losses to the X-rated film industry. After an H.I.V. scare, the industry temporarily shut down around the time that the Labor Department conducts its monthly survey," Rampell reported.

But “in an e-mail, a spokeswoman, Joanne Cachapero, did mention another reason to be skeptical that the pornography shutdown drove the large decline in film payrolls: performers in X-rated films, who number about 3,000, are independent contractors, which means they wouldn’t be counted in the Labor Department’s payroll data anyway. Everyone who works behind the scenes (directors, editors, camera operators, wardrobe and catering workers, drivers, publicists and so forth), though, is a payroll employee and would be affected.”

Pornographers can breathe easier now.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis