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Faced with changing attitudes, tightening regulations and a booming online pornography industry, strip clubs are closing across the US. Sex may still sell in magazines and movies, but are American strip clubs a dying institution, asks Jonathan Berr.
These days, few executives would be willing to risk possibly losing their jobs and the resulting personal humiliation by seeking reimbursement strip dance game their employers for an outing at a strip club. But strip club operator Alan Markovitz said such calls were typical in the late s and s.
Mr Markovitz, a Michigan entrepreneur who has strip club operations in four states, told the BBC he would routinely get notified that a powerful executive was arriving to make sure that they got good seats. During the industry's heyday, customers weren't so timid. Strip club operators would even play along, using innocuous-sounding names on their credit card slips to avoid suspicion.
Indeed, strip club outings were tolerated on Wall Street and in other industries for years until female employees filed suit against their employers earlier in the decade and won tens of millions in lawsuits. In addition, the industry is facing some punishing economic trends including a declining customer base, an abundance of free internet pornography and rising employee costs. At live adult entertainment venues, selling sex it isn't nearly as profitable as it used to be. Annual revenue growth at US strip clubs was 4. The of strip clubs has also declined in recent years in major US cities and their surrounding suburbs.
The of strip clubs in Atlanta has dropped from 45 to 30 in the last 10 years, according to Alan Begner, an attorney who represents strip clubs. Some operators are being forced out by landlords while others are facing new bans on nude dancing in clubs which serve alcohol, where they get most of their profits, Mr Begner said.
Strip dance game club owners are also facing federal class action lawsuit brought by dancers demanding to be classified as employees as opposed to independent contractors under the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act. Silverstein, an attorney based in Bingham Hills, Michigan, who represents Mr Markovitz and other operators.
And on top of all of that having to pay benefits and having to treat all employees equally. It's a mess. According to Crissa Parker, a stripper whose app called The Dancer's Resource allows dancers to warn others about conditions at clubs, performers also aren't benefiting from the increased legal protections and are seeing their incomes fall.
The changes add unwelcome stress for the many performers who hold other jobs like teaching and strip as a side job to make ends meet. The price of a dance has never changed. Strip clubs have also lost their cool among younger consumers. With some clubs stuck in the Mad Men era, young people are choosing to stay home where they have easy access to internet pornography.
They were for 20 years an amazing customer base," Mr Markovitz said. That's the issue. For one thing, many millennials can't afford to party at strip clubs. Even those young consumers that can afford to patronize the clubs are taking a pass.
But it's probably not the nudity that is turning strip dance game off of strip ts. However, Vice pointed out many millennial grooms feel uncomfortable being around strippers and would prefer to bond with their buddies over a game of laser tag or by organising trips.
Kailin Moon, owner of New York's Rosewood Theater, a high-end gentlemen's club, argues that most adult entertainment venues have failed to keep up with the times. He prides himself in offering customers an experience lacking what he calls a "strip club vibe" without stripper poles. Performers are dressed in cocktail attire and are referred to as "atmospheric models.
But whatever the fate of strip clubs, pole dancing is showing its stamina. Beyond the backlit interiors of strip ts, pole dancing has entered the mainstream, in the form of fitness classes. Strip dance game, "part of the stigma is going away", she said. Pole Pressure offers 35 classes every week that emphasize both strength and body confidence. Ms Williams says the studio's Washington location guarantees a wide variety of clients: former strippers, lawyers, judges and babysitters. And Ms Williams said she still gets calls every week from women recently hired as strippers, looking to improve their skills.
For her, strip clubs may be on the decline but there is no shame around its ature dance. Historic London strip club faces closure. Dancers march to defend strip club The rise and fall of lap dancing. Does pornography still drive the internet? What you might not know about Cardi B.
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