ActivismArts and CultureFilm & PhotographySex and Dating

What the Porn Industry Can Learn from Black Lives Matter

Sign up for the best newsletter EVER!

Welcome to Brain-Throbs & Blow Jobs, a column highlighting the great minds and perspectives of Bay Area sex workers through interviews and photo portraits by Maxine Holloway.


There is a lot of information circulating about how to bring #BlackLivesMatter beyond social media and into our daily lives. Many folks are opening their eyes to how white supremacy infiltrates our behavior and want to learn and change. Non-black people have an opportunity to look at the microforms of racism we participate in and commit to being different. But there is an area of our lives that most people do not take the time to examine – pornography.

Black bodies experience an intense amount of fetishization, and this is not to be conflated with appreciation or care for black people. Porn and culture often mirror each other, which affects the type of pornography that is readily available. If you believe Black Lives Matter, you should ensure that Black lives matter in all of your behavior – including your porn consumption. How we view, respect, and value Black sex workers is crucial for equality.

This responsibility is not solely on the consumer. The entire adult industry is complacent in how Black performers are treated, marketed, and compensated. I sat down with Daisy Ducati to talk about her experience and expertise as a Black adult film performer, racism in sex work, and what you can do to help.

Daisy Ducati, adult film performer

Maxine Holloway: Can you describe how the porn industry can be racist?

Daisy Ducati: Racism is a rampant problem in the adult industry, and it is not something that happens in a hushed tone behind closed doors. Agencies impose a limit on how many Black performers they will represent, and the few who make it on the roster are not promoted in the same ways that white performers are. White performers are told they can wait until later in their career to work with Black performers and charge a premium rate for interracial (IR) scenes. Black performers are told that they have to be available for every kind of sex act and scene offered to them, and they will be paid less than their white scene partners for the same work. The scenes that Black performers are offered are often racist in theme or titled and tagged with racist terminology. I once shot a scene with a white male performer that was supposed to be a straightforward boy/girl scene with no specific concept or script. I didn’t find out until I saw my naked body on the DVD box that the film would be called “Black Wives Matter.” I’ve had directors tell me to my face that I won’t be paid as much as my white scene partner because my labor isn’t as valuable. At every turn, Black performers are paid less, disrespected, and tokenized. This kind of industry-wide overt racism would not stand in any other industry, and it is time we finally put a stop to it in porn.

MH: What can non-black sex workers, producers, and directors do to better support Black workers? 

DD: The best thing that our allies can do to support our struggle for fundamental equality is to not engage in their own racist behaviors. Don’t treat interracial scenes as taboo and don’t charge a higher rate work with us. If you’re hiring a Black performer for content, ask them how they would like to be represented in the scene. It is essential for people producing scenes to disclose how the scene will be titled and marketed because performers deserve to have some level of consent around their representation. Finally, stop telling Black performers that our labor is less valuable and less desirable. That is not true, and it’s a weak excuse to pay less for our labor.

MH: What can porn consumers do?

DD: Porn consumers can vote with their dollar on this issue. The best practice is to support performers directly by purchasing their independent content, Onlyfans, clip stores, etc. If you are going to buy content from a large company, find out which ones approach the subject of race respectfully, and treat performers with some level of professionalism and equality. If this seems overwhelming, just ask your favorite performers which companies they enjoy working for. Most will be more than happy to offer suggestions, and sometimes we even get a form of residual pay through affiliate links. 

MH: What direction do you want the industry to go in when it comes to racial equity?

DD: I want to see performers coming together to put serious pressure on the industry as a whole to stop treating Blackness as a cheap taboo. I want to see Black performers offered the same opportunities, pay, and respect as our white counterparts.

We recently started a BIPOC Adult Industry Collective, to provide resources, education, and support for BIPOC sex workers. To learn more, please follow @bipoc_aic on Twitter for more info on the fight for racial equality in the adult entertainment industry. And show support by signing our petition to end racism and wage discrimination in porn.

MH: How has the pandemic affected your work?

DD: I am so lucky that before the pandemic, I had taken a step back from booking work for most major companies and focused on independent work. I lost a few shoots because of Covid-19, but I’ve used the isolation time to put all of my energy into my solo work, and I’ve done pretty well. If anything, this hard time is showing a lot of performers that ultimately what the fans want to see is us. In this era of technology, we don’t have to work for anyone but ourselves. It has also opened a lot of directing opportunities from companies contracting myself and other performers for remote shoots at home. It’s the beginning of a sort of renaissance for indie performer-produced porn, and it’s making way for significant changes in the structure of the industry. 

MH: Any upcoming projects that you are excited about?

DD: I just launched a merch store that I’m very proud of. It’s still a work in progress, but I designed everything myself, including the site, and I’ll be releasing more items this week. You can find it at DaisyDucati.com. I am also going to be putting together a virtual cabaret with performers from all over in late August. I’m still working out the details, but I will be announcing it soon on Twitter and Instagram.

Like this article? Make sure to sign up for our mailing list so you never miss a goddamn thing!
Previous post

Curbside Concerts Let's You Hire Musicians to Play in Front of Your Home

Next post

A Statewide Protest to Shut Down California's Concentration Camps


Maxine Holloway

Maxine Holloway

Maxine is a sex worker, advocate, and new mom. She works for sex worker justice through the ever-intersecting avenues of community organizing, politics, education, and art. Her pornography performances and direction earned her AVN nominations, an XBIZ award, and a Feminist Porn Award. She founded the AskFirstCampaign.org to raise awareness about communication and consent. She co-founded BayAreaWorkersSupport.org, a sex worker resource organization. See more at www.maxineholloway.com (SFW)

No Comment

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *