Adult verification, adult entertainment sites, where you pay to access several sites under that particular services membership plan, network.
Originally called Adult Verification Services, then changed to Age Verification Service, to today's Adult Entertainment Network, is a collection of submitted sites by various people. Each site is unique, and contains anywhere from about fifty images, to thousands.
Generally a loose network of sites, which a consumer gains access to, for one membership fee or charge.
Originally developed by webmasters in response to the concern by Government and Civic Minded groups, who were concerned about the growing pornography available for viewing, to minors.
At the time, credit cards were only being issued to adults, thus the Adult Industry came up with the AVS Model, which was two fold.
One to provide a revenue source for Webmasters, by charging a fee to access a large number of Adult Rated Only sites.
Two to protect minors from seeing such material, thus satisfying the vocal minority that objected, and hopefully satisfying elected officials so that further restrictions wouldn't be enacted.
Adult Verification Services - The original model required site owners to submit galleries of photographs for inclusion under their protection or login feature.
Surfers, consumers, would purchase a membership, which was generally for an entire year, which gave them not only access to the site which sold them the membership, but to all of the sites within that company's login.
The Site Owner who made the submission, received a commission from those membership HIS SITE ONLY sold.
Quality of sites included were only limited to minimum picture numbers, more than anything else. A site could be included, at the early stages, with only 20 photographs, and nothing else.
However, when combined with access to other similar sites, a consumer was able to view thousands of different photographs, for one low fee. The downside being that they had to find them, within the AVS, then click through them.
You could only gain access by using your credit card.
Practice (Associated Acts): Age Verification Service - The name change signaled a response to the growing public concern of minors accessing pornography. It was a cosmetic attempt to appease the vocal minority, and Government regulators.
At the same time, more scrutiny was being given to the sites submitting content, for these catch all sites. Verification of ownership of the content being one, license to use them, as well as assurances of the age of the models used in the photographs.
These services also began to offer other features, to entice both submissions and members. Changes to the quantity of submitted galleries increased, as did options for the consumer.
Membership levels were introduced (though some appeared in the later stages when it was still referred to as 'adult verification services'.) to where customer's were charged on a monthly basis, quarterly, semi annually, and annually.
Usually these levels granted different levels of access.
Submitter's were regulated more, as to what level their submissions would appear in, or be listed under, depending on the quality of their submissions, as well as quantity.
Upsells, or added advertising, within individual sites under the AVS were slowly being limited as well, to further enhance the experience for the customer.
Noteworthy: Many popular membership sites began as AVS or AEN sites. They grew in popularity, and in content, so that when the rules began to evolve to current form, they opted out of the network, and formed their own membership site, using their experience within the AEN/AVS networks, to better serve their customers and loyal fans.
Adult Entertainment Network - The Credit Card Companies balked at the use of their product, as a means of verifying the age of its customers. Not that any Credit Card company was contacted to say, yes Joe Blow is over 21, just that the assumption made was not to their liking.
Some argue that it was due to pressure from various self righteous groups, and Government pressure that forced the Credit Card companies to force these changes on the Adult Industry.
Another explanation is that the Companies were beginning to tap into the under legal age market, that being the Teen Market. Hence they didn't want to be held accountable for a minor gaining access, using one of their cards.
The basic AEN model is not different from its originating model, the AVS. It still allows for submissions, still grants access to consumers to a whole slew of submitted sites, however the requirements and fees have changed dramatically.
Many AEN sites produce their own sites, or divisions, which are required to be promoted within the circle of sites. This has generally been the promotion of Video on Demand services, but also includes galleries of both photographs, and videos.
Advertising limits have been strictly enforced, as has documentation to verify the ownership of, or license of, content being submitted. In addition, greater attention is paid to the legal age of the models being shown.
Prices to the consumer have risen as well. The once a year fee of $20 has long gone, and it does still use the principles of the Age Verification Service model, of different membership levels, each one accessing different levels of the network.
Many AEN networks run their own video services, or lease through the bigger outfits. They include various feeds just as many membership sites do, attempting to entice new members. Their benefit to the site owners, is they handle the processing details, requirements, without the site owner having to do so, or pay any of the Credit Card company fees, that also came into effect about the same time as AEN's.