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Drama at SuicideGirls.com

Former models have accused the alt-porn website's owner of misogynistic treatment -- and the plot keeps thickening.
 
 
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That bastion of alt-porn allure, Suicide Girls, is in trouble -- and not just because of its increasingly boundary-pushing content (recent images involving blood and S&M were pulled from the site after public criticism).

The site is actually being lambasted by its own models -- pierced, tattooed 20-something "punk-rock and goth girl" pin-ups.

According to Deirdre Fulton at the Boston Phoenix, 40 of the website's 1,000 (!!!) models left the company last month in a dramatic "web walk-out," amid claims of shoddy treatment from the company's co-owner, Sean Suhl (known online as "Spooky").

"Dia," a former Suicide Girl who is now a California businesswoman, describes Suhl as "verbally abusive" to SG models. She tells the Phoenix, "[SG is] exploitational to women, and abusive… because it lures women in with a marketing scheme that purports feminism, when in actuality the sole owner of the company is an active misogynist."

Ex-model "Sicily" agrees: "I just feel like people should know what they're paying for…You're giving money to a man who treats women like shit."

And, according to Tales from the Dark Site (a Livejournal SG fan community), Suicide Girl "Shellie" posted this harsh critique on the site itself:

I'm seriously over this site. I'll admit it. I am a total dumb ass for joining. $300 bucks to use my pictures forever? Go fuck yourself. But that's my fault for not realizing. I won't even bother trying to get off the site. I've heard from friends of mine how hard they try. Even by trying to get kicked off. I may try that later.

Also on Tales from the Dark Site, LJ user "Gusto" pleads for submissions from disgruntled former SGs:

To any and all models archived and/or who resigned from Suicidegirls.com… i am collecting OPEN LETTERS (on any topic or experience related to modeling with sg.com, or letters to yours [ sic] fans) and TESTIMONIES (a summary of the overall experience and/or lesson). EMAIL THEM TO: THEBACKSEATEMPIRE@YAHOO.COM … spread the word … if you know a model, are friends with a model, or are one yourself. please inform them... think of the future models who are unaware of what's going on.

This plot will probably continue to thicken -- stay tuned.

Laura Barcella is AlterNet's front page editor.