Sunday, March 16, 2014

How To Destroy Your Reputation And Alienate An Entire Industry In One Day: The Horrible MindGeek/Twistys TOTY 2014 Fix

This isn't necessarily the normal bit of subject matter for BPPA, but since we cover the industry as much as we defend it, it's important to tell the tale when we think it is doing wrong as when it warrants defense.

The adult Internet is now in full flame over the events of the last two days concerning the former glamcore website, and their apparent railroading of their most recent Treat of the Year contest to reward one of their owner's contract models at the expense of the actually deserving models.

The Real Porn Wikileaks' crack (no, not that kind, folks) reporter Michael "Deep Throat" Whiteacre is on the case with a full synopsis of the sitch posted there...but for you, here's the abbreviated story:

Twistys was one of the most successful "glamcore" porn sites, which featured women doing mainly solo and girl/girl scenes, which made them different from the usual boy/girl and "gonzo" sites like Brazzers and BangBros, which were owned by the conglomerate Manwin.

But then, Manwin ousted their original president, rebooted themselves under the name MindGeek, and bought out Twistys, bringing in new management. And, apparently, they concluded that glamcore wasn't their cup of tea, and that Twistys should be bought to heel and introduced to the porn ticky tacky formula of cheap profits and b/g scenes.

Which brings us to their recently completed 2014 Treat of the Year contest, which was supposed to be a fan-voted election where members of the Twistys forum would have the final say in selecting a winner and a runner-up. The prize was a cash award and a paid trip to Costa Rica to do a rip-roaring scene.

Given Twistys sterling reputation, plenty of their models and former TOTY winners turned out to show out for the votes.

Ultimately, the voting concluded, and a winner was announced. Nicole Aniston got the most votes, and was awarded the prestigious award. The runner up, OTOH, wasn't so simple...and that's where I turn the mic over to Mr. Whiteacre:

According to Alexandra, after the voting ended Rob informed her that Nicole Aniston had received the most votes, and Vanessa Veracruz had come in second.

Elle, he said, had come in third, beating Sophia Knight — also a girl/girl-only performer — by one vote.
"Rob" refers to the now former production manager at Twistys (more on that anon). "Elle" is model Elle Alexandra, who, like Vanessa Veracruz, is a strictly girl/girl performer.

Two sources inform TRPWL that Aniston, who had not shot boy/girl content in some time, agreed to work with a male performer in Costa Rica on the condition that Twistys bring Veracruz on the shoot as well.

Veracruz told TRPWL that she worked very hard on this year’s contest — arranging giveaways of DVDs and 8×10 photos.

“I put in a lot of time and effort to connect with fans on a daily basis,” she said.
Alas, all that effort was cast aside by the Twistys upper management, because $$$$ (emphasis added by me):

Rob reportedly took to the forum to post that Aniston was the winner and Veracruz the runner-up specifically because he didn’t want the MindGeek brass to pass off boy/girl performer and Mindgeek contract star Madison Ivy — who had placed fifth at best —  as the contest’s actual runner-up.
Eventually, however, management indicated they would compromise: seeking boy/girl content, they would bring Ivy to Costa Rica, but would still honor Veracruz’s standing as legitimate runner-up.
So, the model who paid a considerable cost in time and money to actually finish second in a model contest must defer to the model who finished at best out of the pack, because promoting your contract model overrides a fair vote in your own contest?? That would be outrageous enough in any form.

But even that "compromise" was apparently not good enough for MindGeek/NewTwistys, because...

That was everyone’s understanding until this morning — when the Twistys site saluted Aniston as Treat of the Year, and Ivy as runner-up.
 And to further emphasize MG/NewTwisty's sudden urge to send the "We make and remake the rules here, sluts" message:
And, in what appears to be a bit of proactive damage control, the link to the Twistys forum — which is overrun with complaints about the contest — was removed from the Twistys homepage.
Turns out, MG had arranged for Ivy's shoot in Costa Rica well in advance of even the TOTY vote; they even paid to fly her to the shoot location before making the announcement of Madison's "win". Apparently, the faux MENSAs who now run MG must have thought that Madison Ivy, who is legitimately popular and well honored as a performer, would get more than enough votes in any contest to win. But, when their lack of knowledge and familiarity with the history of Twistys and their glamcore legacy came back and bit them on their asses, they responded like most big conglomerates when faced with a rebellion from one of their subsidiaries: Crush it like a grape and reestablish your power...and then destroy the evidence.

The backlash has been predictably swift and deep. Vanessa Veracruz, the scorned and jilted rightful runnerup, is firing back at MG/NewTwistys with a #BoycottTwistys campaign, seconded by many of her sister models. Others, like Elle Alexandra, have fired their own volleys back, saying that they would never model ever again at that site. (In Alexandra's case, not by choice, since NewTwistys revoked and canceled her upcoming shoots following her complaints.)

NewTwistys' "So sorry, we are out of fucks to give; we run our own company and stay your asses out of our business" reaction certainly don't help defuse the situation, either. They managed to banish all critics -- including even some past TOTY participants and winners -- from their forum....and then, they even shut down the forum itself, claiming "ongoing maintenance". Riiiiight. Also, "TwistysRob" resigned his post in protest, and now operates his Twitter account under a new name.

This is exactly the kind of corporate idiocy and disrespect for the models/performers who create the content for companies like MindGeek and Twistys that allow the likes of Gail Dines (remember her??) and Shelley Lubben the tiny bit of legitimacy to slam the porn industry as a meat grinder. It's even more unfortunate because MindGeek/Manwin has actually done positive things for the industry through their contributions to the Free Speech Coalitions's PASS protocols, their support for improved talent STI testing, and their opposition to the condom mandate campaign.

Maybe it's time for a new Danni Ashe to emerge to show the Porn Industrial Complex how it should be done. I have my idea for who could step up to the plate....but that's only me.

No comments:

Post a Comment