Marriott Agrees to Meet with Anti-porn Groups About In-Room Adult Content

Tom Hymes
WASHINGTON, D.C. — For the first time, executives from hotel chain Marriott International have agreed to meet with anti-pornography groups concerned about adult content available in Marriott hotel rooms.

According to a spokesperson for one of the groups, the American Family Association, the meeting is scheduled for May 14 in the nation's capitol.

In addition to Marriott-branded hotels, other brands operated by the lodging giant include Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance, Courtyard by Marriott, Residence Inn, Fairfield Inn, SpringHill Suites and TownPlace Suites. All told, Marriott International has about 3,000 properties in the United States.

According to Marriott, hotels are individually owned and determine for themselves whether or not to provide adult entertainment in their in-room television pay-per-view programming. Making a sweeping policy change that would encompass all properties would be a complicated and time-consuming process, according to Marriott.

The meeting in May comes on the heels of a letter sent in early April by 47 “pro-family leaders” requesting a meeting with CEO J.W. Marriott Jr. to discuss the issue of in-room adult content.

Some of the biggest names in the anti-porn world signed the letter, including James Dobson of Focus on the Family, Don Wildmon, founder of the American Family Association and Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, to name a few.

“We’re asking Marriott to discontinue showing the in-room porn movies," Wildmon said. "Very simple. It’s not a big request.”

The hotel chain may not agree, especially considering the fact that a 2006 analysis by the industry estimated that adult content accounted for 60 to 80 percent of in-room entertainment profits.

The Marriott pornography issue also was raised during the current presidential campaign, when social conservatives claimed that former candidate Mitt Romney, who served on the Marriott Board from 1992 to 2001, should have done more to halt adult offerings.