The exchange of sex for money is legal in Britain. Now, fuelled by websites and social media, a new economy has emerged - bringing a world of transactional sex to people who might never have previously considered it.

Award-winning filmmaker, Louis Theroux, meets women in the UK legally providing sexual services, either to make a living or to supplement their income, potentially earning hundreds of pounds per hour. As long as it doesn’t involve coercion, exploitation, or any kind of public nuisance, they are free to do so. But rather than work on the streets or in illegal brothels, these women sell sex from their own homes or hotels, utilizing technology to share photos, make bookings and vet potential clients - making the exchange more accessible and, according to some, safer than the illegal alternatives.

MORE: I’m a Toronto sex worker: Here’s why I find my job empowering

The age-old issue of whether sex should ever be traded remains, with many believing it to be exploitative and damaging, driven by a society still shaped by the desires of men. Yet there are those who feel that selling sex can be a valid, empowering choice for those who choose to engage in it.

As Louis meets the women and men participating in the new sexual economy, he explores whether selling sex can ever be a healthy way to make money.

Credits (Click to expand)

Written & Presented by

LOUIS THEROUX

Original Music

MIGUEL D'OLIVEIRA

Graphics

ED EMMERSON

Sound Recordists

LUCY PICKERING

ROB THOMAS

ADAM TOY

Transcriber

MOIRA HALL

Production Management Assistant

ANJANA STEPHENS

Production Coordinator

THOMAS THORPE

Researcher

STACEY-ANNE BAPTISTE

Production Manager

HANNAH RAMSEY

Line Producer

SARA PODMORE

Head Of Production

DANNY YASRUDDIN

Post Production Producers

CLEA SINGH

SARAH YEBOAH

Dubbing Mixer

CHRIS BRAITHWAITE

Colourist

ANDREW CLOKE

On-line Editor

BARRIE PEASE

Consultant Producer

LOUIS THEROUX

Commissioning Editor

EMMA LOACH

Producer

CHERYL HOCKEY

Film Editor

JANE GREENWOOD

Executive Producers

ARRON FELLOWS

PETER DALE

Filmed & Directed by

JOSHUA BAKER

BBC

STUDIOS

The Documentary Unit

© BBC MMXX

Distributed by BBC STUDIOS