THE BLOG
09/08/2010 02:06 pm ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

'Censored' Now on Craigslist, Tiger Woods Is Spellbound

You won't learn here that Tiger Woods was a regular reader of the former Craigslist "erotic services" advertisements that became "adult services" in May 2009 and are now labeled "censored." Unlike President Nixon who would thusly preface his usual innuendo-skewed description of an opponent or an enemy, "I'm not saying that he was, but you will have to decide for yourself," we will refrain from following his example.

You can click "censored" forever but it won't open up into a world of erotic advertisements, in fact it won't open up at all. By eliminating that category, Craigslist may be cutting off $44 million of potential advertising revenue this year, and while some pundits proclaim it's a "high-stakes stunt" to influence public opinion, some of those in the business of selling religion are thrilled by the news.

Craigslist still provides an analogous category entitled "therapeutic," which for the most part tends to be massage therapists soliciting their services for legitimate stress relief. However, it seems as if some former "erotic" and "adult" services advertisers have found a comfortable new home under the "therapeutic" banner with one headline reading: "Full Relaxation From My Massage" accompanied by a photograph of a woman in a mini-skirt with her breasts not-so-shyly protruding. Another offers, "stress, pain, fading love life? call us." A third presents the headline "Full Body Sensual Massage" followed by a questionable therapeutic sales pitch "Come and enjoy our Full Body Massage from our beautiful and talented staff, where they will use their hands to massage your body and ease your mind and soul."

To ease one's soul is something many seek but that won't happen for wordsmiths, etymologists and connoisseurs of the English language who may start protesting this category. They will do so not because of the subtly hidden descriptions of the services offered, but because some advertisements promulgate excessive misspellings and grammatical deviations. This may be attributed to the fact that for many of these advertisers, English is definitely not their primary language.

A recent random foray into the Craigslist category "therapeutic" revealed headlines that add an extra letter for possible emphasis such as "Grand Openning" or "proffessional massage." Another tried to convince potential clients that she is the one saying, "let i take care of you! you going right," while one hopes to dissolve the notion that nobody is perfect by offering "Prefect Asian And Western Style Deep Tissue$ Relax Massage."

Type in "Craigslist censored" and after 0.25 seconds you will only receive 364,000 results. Perhaps mainstream media and the bloggers are just putzing around with the subject before they turn their full attention to the mid-term elections. Undoubtedly some will try to connect a candidate to the Craigslist story and if not, an opposing party's candidate is probably working on that tenuous connection right now -- and that spells trouble.