LOS ANGELES — Diane Duke is well known in the adult industry for tackling tough situations whether it’s policy issues, performer medical scares or everyday battles with anti-porn crusaders. And now mainstream is getting a look at what made the Free Speech Coalition CEO take on the controversial post in a Cosmopolitan magazine feature.
In the article, Duke tells why and how she became a porn industry advocate in her typical no nonsense, candid and passionate fashion.
Chronicling her path to the job that began nine years ago, Duke talks about her prior position at Planned Parenthood and her struggle for women’s rights.
She said she wanted to move from her home in Oregon to somewhere warmer and applied for the FSC post at the suggestion of her wife. “I kind of went, ‘Huh.’ In my undergrad work at the University of Oregon in my feminist theory class, I did a paper on lesbian porn and that's kind of what early on intrigued me about adult content. So I was definitely open to the idea.”
What’s commonplace to those in the industry – like attending trade shows with half-nude talent and dildos at every booth — proved to be Duke’s introduction to adult signalling that she was now part of porn and dealing with sex was simply part of the job.
Duke told Cosmo her job is exciting, fun and funny, but also meaningful. “I'm here working for people who want to sell content and have expression that is often looked down on by society, by other businesses, and by governments that would try to block them from producing what they want to produce. I think some of the other shockers are how much over-reach there is in some situations where people use their authority for their own personal agenda.”
The FSC firebrand also defended the right for women to work in porn despite some feminist opposition.
Duke said our society cannot wrap their heads around the fact that women are sexual beings and should be allowed to work in adult without the stigma attached. “If a woman is in porn, then our society either believes that she is a victim or she is a slut. Women are not supposed to be sexually aggressive, women can't enjoy sex, women can't want sex and women can't be in these videos without it being something that's coerced or forced upon them.”
The executive told Cosmo that the great thing about the industry is that people can find their place, they can find their pleasure and it's not judgmental. "They can know there are people out there like them."