Craigslist ends personal ads amid anti-sex trafficking legislation

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Saturday, March 24, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO -- Craigslist is shutting down its personals section, a portion of its site with ads seeking romance or sexual connections.

It comes after the U.S. Senate on Wednesday passed an anti-sex trafficking bill that could hold the website and others responsible for illegal activity if it becomes law. The company says the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act seeks to subject websites to criminal and civil liability.

A message on the site says any tool or service can be misused and the company hopes it can bring them back "some day." Craigslist closed by saying: "To the millions of spouses, partners, and couples who met through craigslist, we wish you every happiness!"

The personals section will continue to be accessible outside the U.S as long as users can confirm they are 18.

It's not the first time Craigslist has cracked down on it controversial categories. In 2009, a section of the website known as "erotic services" was changed to "adult services." That section stopped listing ads entirely a year later.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.