deep throat, deep pockets
August 29, 2006 3:34 PM   Subscribe

How can I start my own pay for porn site?

Honestly I got this idea from reading Pornified. I'm broke and it made complete sense to me that I could just run a porn site and make money This would be a pay site with photographs either taken by me or submitted by members of the site or people I know.

I'm not concerned about hosting and payment gateways. I don't mean I'm not concerned, I just have resources for that already.

If I publish user submitted work, do they need to sign a release so that I don't have to pay them any sort of royalties? Can I legally solicit for submissions on Craigslist? What sort of taxes will I need to file - this will not be my primary income. Ideally it may become that, though with memberships and ad revenue. What else am I possibly missing?
posted by pieoverdone to Computers & Internet (17 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Your going to need a lot more than release forms especially if you use user submitted content. Do a search on "2257" regulations to read up on the massive amounts of paperwork and hoops you have to jump through in order to legal have a porn site. In nutshell, you're going to need to have verifiable and detailed records (above and beyond a standard release form) for every single individual in every single photo you publish. It's a huge headache.
posted by RoseovSharon at 3:54 PM on August 29, 2006


GFY and TBPR can probably fill in some blanks.
posted by meehawl at 4:25 PM on August 29, 2006


When researching a story, I interviewed a successful pornographer about the business in general and I asked his top piece of advice for anyone who wanted to start in the business. His answer? Get a good lawyer first. (Emphasis his.)

He said it didn't matter what else you did because if you fucked that one up you were toast.
posted by dobbs at 4:35 PM on August 29, 2006


>I'm broke and it made complete sense to me that I could just run a porn site and make money

I don't think it makes sense at all. It's an incredibly overcrowded marketplace, with millions of established providers. And if you're broke, you don't have the startup costs, which as you can see from the posts already, are significant.

Previously.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 5:22 PM on August 29, 2006


It's worth noting (though I wouldn't recommend it by any stretch) that a vast majority of porn sites are run illegally. That is, they just present (copyrighted) material from other websites using a dirt-cheap colocation provider in some country with favorable laws.

That said, AmbroseChapel is right. The market is extremely crowded (though I hesistate to ever say 'saturated' when it comes to porn), precisely because anybody can slap together some web pages with breasts and/or vagina. Most of them never see a profit.
posted by kfx at 5:36 PM on August 29, 2006


I'm surprised that anyone would actually pay for porn these days.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:22 PM on August 29, 2006


I second the "who pays for porn" sentiment. It's probably easier to set up the site if you do it outside of the US. The US has puritanical laws as mentioned above.
posted by chunking express at 6:44 PM on August 29, 2006


You could ask this guy.
posted by duende at 6:51 PM on August 29, 2006


If you have any creative design and blogging/storywriting ability, you could always start with affiliate promotion sites. Check out the Beta Brigades if you don't know the first thing about setting up affiliate sites.
posted by DecemberRaine at 7:14 PM on August 29, 2006


it made complete sense to me that I could just run a porn site and make money

Speaking as someone that has a porn site (i'm not linking to it, but the link is somewhere on the link in my profile), and as someone that has a few contacts/friends in this industry, I can pretty much say that unless you have a pretty grand idea for a site that's never really been done before, and unless you get mega exposure somehow... you're not going to get a crapload of money so easily.
posted by damnjezebel at 7:15 PM on August 29, 2006


18 usc 2257. Research it and see if then you want to have an adult endeavour.

Let us not forget about establishing some type of merchant account. Dont even try unless you are an established business with resources. Even then they are skittish about processing "adult" transactions.

Even if you use an all-in-one processing house, its at least $750 to begin taking Visa and around $400/year to keep taking it.

Also, you cant use your garden-variety $4.95/month webhost.

Oh, one other thing. Link Structure. Who will visit your site if they dont know its there. How will you advertise?

Unless you have something that is unique, very high quality or both, just get a second job. Trust me, I've been doing it for 6 years. Its not all taking photos and collecting checks.
posted by sandra_s at 7:33 PM on August 29, 2006


...you're not going to get a crapload of money so easily

...hmm, but if you show someone literally producing a crapload of money, you would probably hit on the internet's next big thing and could make a fortune...
posted by troybob at 10:48 PM on August 29, 2006


This thread is useless without pics.

/just sayin'.

I think you need to offer something a little less mindless. One of our faithfuls, damnjezebel maintains a pretty hot semi-porn blog.

The idea is that it's not just porn. It's intelligent porn. And I don't know if DJ makes any money or anything, but that might not be her primary focus. She might just be performing a service to humanity.

Find a niche. Fill it. With porn. Et cetera.
posted by disillusioned at 3:51 AM on August 30, 2006


YNOT is probably the biggest adult webmaster resource site out there.
posted by wackybrit at 4:51 AM on August 30, 2006


One of the ways that I've seen people do this before is through first joining a community that offers free pictures, like some of the communities on LiveJournal. Then, through being hot, you can create an audience that's fiercely loyal (if, to my eyes, kinda fuckin' creepy), and transition that into a paysite of your own (which people will help you put together).
Otherwise, your best hope for this business endeavor is to sign up to be a webcam girl or nude model for someone who already has the infrastructure. Or you can always go for the traditional student stripper model, which will make you a lot more money.
posted by klangklangston at 6:14 AM on August 30, 2006


whoa. Thanks, disillusioned. that was very nice of you to say. =) ***

To get somewhat technical, DJ is my journal site and I link to my paysite via the banner at the top of the page (still not mentioning the name of the site - how snicky of me!).

I'm not really sure what exactly you're wanting to do, Pie, so I'm just going to tell you what I had to have to start. I upgraded my pc a bit to handle the load (roughly 500), paid for a visa license (750), and a decent camera (800). I also have my own server (not required, but i easily freak out over space and bandwidth), but before I was paying about $30 a month for my pornage.

The market right now is so oversaturated (heh) with porn sites and internet models that you simply can't make any money unless you have a niche. Something that no one else is doing (or at least, no one is making money on). Like it's already been said - no one really has to pay for porn anymore, if you know where to look. I'm not going to get too preachy about my reasons for making porn - I basically didn't like what was out there, so I decided to stop bitching about it and make my own. I have a niche and I'm loyal to it. I will never make a "crapload of money", but my concern is paying my bills and making art and to me, that's what I care about.

My paysite doesn't make a lot. My key "motto" is: I work 75% more than I did in the "real world", and I make 75% less. But I'm happy doing it, and that's worth more to me than almost anything. And it needs to be said that the people that join my site are readers from my journal site - they know they're not getting typical porn from me, and they also know that this is, for lack of a less cheesy line, my art.

2257 is something you HAVE to check out. You cannot be in this business without having some knowledge of 2257. A few years ago, you wouldn't have (reasonably) had to worry about it, but nowadays it pretty much calls into question how much you want to work in this industry, and how much models and producers value their privacy.

Ok, this is long enough, but short recap:

- don't get into this business without a clear idea of what you want.
- don't get into this business expecting to make a shitload
- don't think you can say "gee i need money, i think i'll make some porn" and have it magically happen.
- find a niche - that's the only real way you'll make money nowadays.


***please note - i am in no way affiliated with disillusioned, nor did i pay disillusioned for the "commercial".***
posted by damnjezebel at 3:04 PM on August 30, 2006


I did exactly what you were trying to do many years ago. The biggest problem that I ran into? Some women are flakes. We couldn't find any talent in the area that we were in! (Northern California)

* Girls would not show up to pre-arranged photo shoots.
* One showed up and said that she now felt she was worth 3 x the rate we had agreed upon.
Out of a pool of about 50 responses, we managed to get a whopping 2 actual models, and one of them ended up flaking as well.

I said "Forget this" and got a job instead.

However, pieoverdone, you're a female. A little bird told me that female own & produced porn sites are more likely to get financial backing & promotion. But I could very well be wrong, and your mileage may vary.

At the very least, maybe you could snap some nice photos. :-D
posted by drstein at 4:48 PM on August 31, 2006


« Older Help my family protect our log...   |  RelationshipFilter (sorry!): I... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.