I am definitely in the wrong place. Much like the city of Pittsburgh itself, Adult Empire is going through a bit of a renaissance. The company went from employees to about half that — the economy was dead, DVD was dead, and so was porn. They expanded their VOD capabilities dramatically and boast a massive video on demand library, as well as a Netflix-like monthly subscription service — Adult Empire Unlimited — which taps over 30, streaming movies and , individual scenes.
Put simply, Adult Empire offers a staggering amount of porn. The main office, where we were already sitting, was as inconspicuous and banal as any other commercial office space, save some brightly colored walls. Then it was time to go to the warehouse. Located much closer to downtown Pittsburgh, the Adult Empire warehouse came about because of a scandal.
Back in , when the company was looking to expand their office facility, they needed to pull some construction permits. This led to neighbors realizing exactly what was happening inside. There were even protesters. So the company decided to get warehouse space elsewhere. Yep — people rent porn DVDs, return them, and then someone else rents them later maybe even you: You see, Adult Empire produces a small amount of content which they shoot in California, where porn production is legal , mostly star showcase collections that highlight a particular performer — the aforementioned Megan Rain, Jenna J.
Ross, and Scarlett Red for example. Chelsea imitates a sex toy …and clothes: All this and there was still a third facility to go to— the data center.
We all piled back in the car and made our way even closer to downtown. As more and more people and companies move to cloud storage, hard storage has become more and more difficult to find. And as Adult Empire was expanding their VOD capabilities, they found it more and more difficult to find the type of storage they needed. So they built their own. A sea of very complex and intimidating looking hard drive systems blinked at me, letting me know it was almost time for dinner. A born-and-raised Pittsburgher, Chura was turned down the first time he applied for a coding job at Adult Empire.
It was , he had just completed school, and the Empire was the only dot com in the area. He tried again in , this time starting in the warehouse before moving into web development, then to his current role as Director of Web Development and Affiliates. Like most everything in porn, it was a pretty unconventional way to move up the food chain. In addition to that gym, I heard tale of Secret Santas, employee lunches every month, a gardening club there was a huge community garden off the side of the parking lot at the main office , and going to baseball games and the local amusement park, Kennywood.
It could be that Adult Empire is just nicer than most, but it also could be strategic — because when the world is protesting your right to mail products others have ordered, you need to make sure the team around you is on your side.
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