I wish I hadn’t put off blogging for so long, because it turns out this story is kind of time sensitive.
This past Friday, a federal judge gave Backpage just 10 days to turn over documentation requested by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. This is the subcommittee that has been investigating Backpage’s alleged role in the sex trafficking of women and children on its website. Backpage CEO Carl Ferrer has argued that the Senate’s investigation violates Backpage’s right to free speech and violates due process. The judge disagreed in her ruling and gave Backpage to the 15th to submit the requested documentation.
It will be interesting to see how Backpage reacts since their strategy up to this point has been to run and hide. When Ferrer was subpoenaed to appear before congress last year, his reaction was to simply not show up claiming business matters in Amsterdam were more pressing. This led to the Senate holding Backpage in contempt and being the first entity in 20 to be sued by the Senate.
I don’t know if I can wait to see what Backpage has up their sleeve this time. If this is any indication…
Backpage attorney Elizabeth McDougell declined to comment.
…then Backpage may finally be out of tricks.