The Internet Escort’s Handbook

Safe, Sane, Successful Escort Work is Possible!

Researching Escorts’ Boundaries

I received a research request from a student in Illinois. She seems very nice and is researching a topic that I think is valuable, but one that doesn’t seem to be have been deeply studied academically. For details about the researcher and the study, continue reading.

Her name is Geri (Geraldine) Hendrix and you can find a quick profile of her here.

I’m passing along information about her and her research to anyone who might be interested. She does not know where I’m posting her request. Please contact her directly with any questions:

Yes, I’m going to interview with her, even though I’m retired (she’s making an exception!).

In her own words:

I am a sociology graduate student at Southern Illinois University Carbondale and am looking for volunteers to participate in a study regarding the lives and work experiences of escorts. To be an eligible participant you must currently work as an escort and be 18 years or older. I would like to include your insights in my research on escorts and only need about hour of your time.

My research is an exploration of escorts and boundary work. My research question is “what types of boundaries do escorts draw to differentiate themselves from others?” More specifically, I want to explore four dimensions of boundary work: (1) boundaries between escorts and clients, (2) boundaries between escorts and other escorts, (3) boundaries between escorts and non-escorts, and (4) legal and gender boundaries negotiated by escorts.

From her consent form:

The purpose of this study is to examine how escorts view their own lives and construct their identity. Particular attention will be paid to the process by which escorts differentiate themselves from others. The information gathered from my participation in this study may be presented in lectures, papers, and professional activities including publications. I understand that I will be allowed to see transcripts of my interview(s) before any publication and I may request a copy of any publication that might result.

I am 18 years or older and my participation in this study is completely voluntary. I agree to participate in this activity and know that my responses will be either recorded on audio tape or transcribed directly from internet exchanges (e.g. email and instant messaging services). I understand that the researcher will take all reasonable steps to protect my identity; however, I am aware that, as with any exchange of information via the internet, the researcher cannot guarantee total anonymity. I agree that Geraldine M. Hendrix-Sloan may quote me directly and that if she does so she will withhold all personally identifying information.

I understand that the initial interview process will last approximately 1-2 hours and I may be asked to participate in a follow-up interview. I further understand that I may withdraw from this study at any time and that I may refuse to answer any question at any time without penalty. Geraldine M. Hendrix-Sloan will conduct the interview and will subsequently transcribe all interviews. The original tape(s) and/or transcription will be stored in a locked file cabinet accessible only to the researcher, Geraldine M. Hendrix-Sloan, for a period of no more than three years after the completion of the study.

I understand that any and all reports, written or oral, based upon this research will be confidential and my name will not be listed or mentioned in any context. All questions regarding this project and my participation in it have been adequately answered. I have received a copy of this consent agreement with all necessary research and contact information.

This project has been reviewed and approved by the SIUC Human Subjects Committee. The Committee believes that the project procedures adequately safeguard the subject’s privacy, welfare, civil liberties, and rights. Questions concerning your rights as a participant in this project may be addressed to the Committee Chairperson, Office of Research Development and Administration, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL 62901-4709. Phone (618) 453-4533. E-mail