Howell To Post: Stop Supporting Hookers

…well, sort of. Post Ombudsman Deborah Howell examines an obscure, but interesting, aspect of her newspaper: Their massage parlor ads.

    The Post runs “massage parlor” advertising almost every day in the Sports section. The ads are small and discreet in content, but not always candid: The money for those ads doesn’t come from masseuses trained in Swedish, shiatsu or deep-tissue massage. And men don’t go there for back rubs.

Mary Ann Werner, vice president and counsel for The Post, said, “We don’t knowingly accept advertising from an illegal business, but we do have to rely on licensing authorities and law enforcement to determine that a business is not operating legally.” Still, Howell concludes that “Many newspapers of comparable quality do not take massage parlor ads — the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Boston Globe. The Post should join them.”