In 2010, Craigslist is expected to pull in some $36 million from sex advertisements. However, since many of the ads openly sell sex - often with minors - human rights groups are speaking out against the business plan.
James Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, will not confirm the figures, which were calculated by the Advanced Interactive Media Group based on the number of sex ads in a month and the fees for posting such ads. They believe that Craigslist will more than triple their revenue from sex ads in the next year, and will most likely see a 22% jump in total revenue.
But, as the New York Times reports, this does not come at a very good time. Last week, the FBI arrested 14 members of the Gambino crime family on charges of pimping out girls aged 15-19 over Craigslist. And this is not the only example of Craigslist being used to facilitate crime. There was the famous case of the so-called Craigslist Killer, and there have been several examples of rape arranged through a third party in the "casual encounters" section. So far, most judges have ruled that Craigslist is not responsible for crimes committed through their website, which has allowed the site to continue offering certain sections and services.