San Francisco, Open Your Golden Gate- Condom law in L.A. could boost porn production in San Francisco, Sez AVN

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from www.examiner.com – Passage of a law in Los Angeles County requiring porn performers to wear condoms while shooting movie scenes could pump up San Francisco’s porn industry.

Theo Sapoutzis, chairman and CEO of AVN Media Network, a publisher and event manager for the adult entertainment business, said Tuesday that he thinks the volume of porn production likely will ramp up in San Francisco in the wake of the L.A. law. But, he added, “it’s early to tell if we’ll see a massive exodus of the adult industry towards S.F., Las Vegas or Miami.”

Michael Stabile, a spokesman for San Francisco-based porn studio Kink.com, said he thinks some porn filmmakers based in the L.A. area might shoot more movies in San Francisco or even relocate here following voter approval of the condom law, known as Measure B. Stabile said that in the late 1970s, some makers of adult films moved to San Francisco from L.A. after Southern California cops cracked down on production of porn.

Following passage of Measure B on Nov. 6, some adult film companies in the L.A. area are looking to shift production to Las Vegas, “which is closer to L.A. and has more space than San Francisco,” Stabile told Examiner.com.

“So while some smaller companies might move up here, most larger companies will be looking to build studios and soundstages where they can mount larger productions.”

Still, some producers of adult films have mentioned San Francisco as a refuge from the L.A. condom law, which formally is known as the County of Los Angeles Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act. Porn producer Jimmy Broadway told NeonTommy.com that passage of Measure B would prompt his business to move out of Los Angeles County, possibly to San Francisco.

In a piece for TheAtlantic.com, adult entertainment blogger Lux Alptraum pointed out that while L.A. may be the epicenter of porn production, San Francisco, San Diego and Miami already foster their own hard-core porn scenes and will be immune to Measure B.

“So if the L.A. climate becomes less friendly to the adult industry,” she wrote, “San Francisco and Miami are well positioned to pick up the slack.”

Dan “Porno Dan” Leal, CEO of Southern California-based adult film company Immoral Productions, stressed to industry publication Adult Video News that production of adult films is legal in just two states – California and Nevada. Since Measure B applies only to Los Angeles County, he said, there are “countless municipalities within the state of California where this law does not apply and where we would be welcome.”

Opponents of Measure B have said the law will force thousands of jobs out of the L.A. area. The porn business employs more than 10,000 people in the region. About 90 percent of U.S. porn movies are shot in the L.A. area, with the San Fernando Valley being the hub, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Dan Miller, executive managing editor of adult entertainment publication XBIZ, said San Francisco would be an attractive alternative for porn production, but he thinks many porn filmmakers in the L.A. area are taking a “wait-and-see attitude” toward Measure B and “aren’t in a rush to leave town.”

The Free Speech Coalition, a group representing the adult film business, has said it’s entertaining offers from neighboring states to move porn-related jobs out of Los Angeles County “as quickly as possible.”

Stuart Waldman, president of the Valley Industry and Commerce Association, a San Fernando Valley chamber of commerce that fought Measure B, said in a news release that L.A. porn companies already “are being aggressively courted by other states and cities to relocate.”

The coalition is a key member of the No on Government Waste Committee, which fought Measure B. The Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation led support for the condom-wearing law.

“While the AIDS Healthcare Foundation has tried to portray any move of jobs outside of L.A. County as unrealistic, the hard truth of the matter is that is exactly what this industry plans on doing now,” James Lee, communications director for the No on Government Waste Committee, said in a news release.

Measure B will require the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to license and permit adult movie productions, require porn actors to wear condoms, and establish on-set inspections and enforcement.

Supporters say the measure will help reduce HIV infections and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among porn actors, who often go without condoms because audiences prefer “bare” sex. Opponents of Measure B say the adult film industry already adheres to strict standards for STD testing.

Key players in the adult film business are pursuing legal action to block Measure B. Meanwhile, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation is seeking a state lawmaker to sponsor legislation that would let state and local public health officials enforce condom use on porn movie sets throughout California.

“An overwhelming majority of voters in Los Angeles spoke out in support of safer sex practices in the adult film industry through their votes for Measure B … . Unlike some politicians or editorial writers, it seems the voters were not squeamish about this issue, seeing this as a means to protect the health and safety of performers working in the industry,” Michael Weinstein, president of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, said in a news release.

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