Unsung Hero (noun): a person who makes a substantive yet often unrecognized contribution; a person whose bravery is unknown or unacknowledged.
This, the first part of an ongoing series for my XBiz Blog, provides a spotlight on a person in the adult industry that has worked behind the scenes over the years to help make our industry a success. Yes, we all know the names Larry Flynt, John Stagliano, Ron Cadwell, Alec Helmy, and the many others that are the public figures, but who makes the trains run on time in the background? Let's take a look at some of these folks I have known, worked with, and have gained respect for over my 16 years in the adult industry...
Theresa (Darklady) Reed
Industry Writer, Journalist, Pundit and Activist
I first met Darklady about 14 years ago at one of the early industry trade shows and she immediately struck me as one of the brightest people I had ever encountered, anywhere.
The bio from her main website reads: "Theresa "Darklady" Reed is a regular contributor to numerous adult industry trade magazines and websites, a board member of the Free Speech Coalition, on the Advisory Committee for the Woodhull Freedom Foundation, and has nearly two decades of experience covering the adult entertainment industry, internet technology, and alternative sexuality beats online, in print, and via traditional and web radio".
But, that does not even begin to cover the depth of this special person that has been in our midst over the years. A quote from her blog gives us a glimpse into her thought process:
"Working writers, just like mainstream actors or video vixens, are only as good as their last releases, so as soon as the ink is dry on the CRT, it’s time to get moving on the next piece of priceless prose. Time to create. Time to Become again. In order for that to happen, there has to be an eternal flame of some sort that burns inside, probably where sanity is usually located. The process of Becoming, of using that internal fire as a motivating force that purifies and strengthens is an inherent part of the creative process. It is also inherently risky, since it opens the individual up to constant change and growth, both of which can be exhausting."
Among my favorite experiences working with Theresa was our collaboration on "Dot-XXX - The Movie". Around a year or so ago, I got a hair across my butt about the ongoing dot-xxx developments and asked Darklady if she would write a script to do a parody film to educate people that were otherwise too weary or busy to dig through the 10 years of documents about this industry debacle. The results were just amazing, and over the course of a month, she wrote and delivered one of the finest bits of high art parody I've ever been blessed to work with as a film treatment. Theresa has been a contributing author to my sites Wasteland.com and Sssh.com for years for erotic prose, but this screenplay astounded me!
Since that time, Darklady has been the proverbial "class historian" on the dot-xxx issue at her comprehensive site, dotxxxopposition.com which shows her depth of passion for free speech issues and attention to detail as an historian, all interlaced with her unique op-ed charm and humorous sidebars. Most recently, we can see this in yet another dot-xxx satire based around an Austin Powers movie scene that feels all too close to the reality in our industry at present.
So, be it investigative reporting, editorial or prose, Theresa "Darklady" Reed is a voice that has resounded and helped shape the adult industry since it's beginnings.
Visit her on the web at any of the above links, or her home blog at http://darklady.com/
About the Author:
As the founder and CEO of Wasteland.com, the Internet’s oldest and most popular
alternative sexual community, Colin Rowntree is a true pioneer of the online adult
entertainment industry. Since launching Wasteland.com in 1994, Colin has developed a
network of sites that encompasses the full breadth of adult business sectors, from content
production and distribution to affiliate program management, mobile content delivery to
transaction processing, just to name a handful.
Colin’s stature within the adult industry is reflected by the many honors and recognitions
he has received over the years from adult industry media outlets and trade organizations,
including his 2011 induction to the Adult Video News (AVN) Hall of Fame and 2010
XBIZ Award for Excellence in Alternative Erotica. Colin was also the recipient of the
2011 Leadership Award from the Free Speech Coalition (FSC).
An eloquent, witty and thought-provoking commentator, Colin is a frequent contributor
to industry trade publications and websites, including Adult Video News and XBIZ. He
has been interviewed by and featured on BBC Television, the Fox Network, HBO, Wired
magazine, Cnet.com and Bnet.com. Contact Colin at his B2B network site, SpiceCash.com.