In the late 1980s, the leadership of WAP began to focus more on the issue of international sex trafficking, and were instrumental in the founding of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women.WAP became less active in the 1990s and faded out of existence in the middle of that decade. Civil liberties advocates opposed WAP and similar groups, holding that the legislative approaches WAP advocated amounted to censorship.Sex-positive feminists held that feminist campaigns against pornography were misdirected and ultimately threatened sexual freedoms and free speech rights in a way that would be detrimental toward women, gay people, and sexual minorities.
Their anti-pornography activism around Times Square also brought in unexpected financial support from the Mayor's office, theater owners, and other parties with an interest in the gentrification of Times Square.
WAP became known through their anti-pornography informational tours of sex shops and pornographic theaters in Times Square.
In the 1980s, WAP began to focus more on lobbying and legislative efforts against pornography, particularly in support of civil-rights-oriented antipornography legislation.
They were also active in testifying before the Meese Commission and some of their advocacy of a civil-rights based anti-pornography model found its way into the final recommendations of the commission.
These events were battles in what became known as the Feminist Sex Wars of the late 1970s and 1980s.
The group that eventually became Women Against Pornography emerged from the efforts of New York radical activists in fall 1976, after the public controversy and pickets organized by Andrea Dworkin and other radical feminists over the public debut of Snuff.It was part of a larger wave of radical feminist organizing around the issue of pornography, which included protests by the Los Angeles group Women Against Violence Against Women against The Rolling Stones' sadomasochistic advertisements for their album Black and Blue (see below).Women Against Pornography (WAP) was a radical feminist activist group based out of New York City and an influential force in the anti-pornography movement of the late 1970s and the 1980s.WAP was the best known of a number of feminist anti-pornography groups that were active throughout the United States and the anglophone world, mainly from the late 1970s through the early 1990s.After previous failed attempts to start a broad feminist anti-pornography group in New York City, WAP was started in 1978.WAP quickly drew widespread support for its anti-pornography campaign, and in late 1979 held a March on Times Square that included over 5000 supporters.