Is all pornography bad? The pros and cons of adult entertainment

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If you’re a fan of the American comedy-drama series Scrubs, you’ll be familiar with this quote from Dr. Cox: “I’m fairly sure that if they took porn off the internet, there’d be only one website left and it’d be called Bring back the porn!” And if you’re too young to have watched Scrubs, well, you still get what that means — porn is everywhere. Chances are, you’ve watched pornography in your life and if you haven’t, it’s likely that many more people around you do so than you think. 

 

People love pornography and it’s easy to see why: it’s arousing, cheap (and often free), and can come in all shapes and sizes (although not as much as we’d like it to). From hot videos to erotic tales and comics, humans love to find ways to let their fantasies run wild.
However, many wonder if pornography is bad for their health as well as that of the people involved in its production. Indeed, there is a bad side to porn that can’t be ignored. 
In this article, you’ll find information about the effects of pornography on consumers, performers, and how to experience it in a safe way. You will also learn what feminism porn is and what it’s trying to achieve.

Is it normal to watch Pornography?

Absolutely. In fact, the majority of people watch or have watched porn videos. Numbers of course vary depending on age and location. 
To give you an idea, recent US-based research found that 30% of internet content can be described as pornography-related and 40 million Americans regularly visit porn sites. 
Elsewhere, the situation is similar: a 2018 survey by the University of Prague and the Prague University of Economics and Business found that 71.8% of Millennials in the Czech Republic watch pornographic material.
So in case you’re wondering, you’re not alone in watching porn and there’s nothing unnatural about your behavior. 

Do women watch porn?

The answer, again, is yes, women watch porn too. The same Czech research found that nearly 60% of surveyed women reported accessing it regularly.
Normally, men consume more porn than women. This may be due to several factors, including but not limited to:
  • Medium and platform — many women find non-visual content more arousing and may prefer erotic literature and other non-visual platforms
  • Content — most online porn is geared towards a male audience, it often objectifies and dehumanizes female bodies, and may not be appealing to a female public

 

Does Feminist Porn Exist?

Feminist and queer-positive porn makers work towards a less patriarchal industry where pleasure and desire are represented for all genders and sexualities. A place where performers are treated and seen as equals and sex isn’t only made of genitals and orifices attached to dehumanized bodies.
By the way, that doesn’t mean vanilla videos only. Kinks and rough sex can be depicted in a way that is not degrading and where acts are clearly consensual and enjoyable.

What is feminist porn, exactly?

Feminist pornographers work on several fronts:
  • Making sets, contracts, and work conditions safer and fairer for performers
  • Offering content and representation that isn’t tailored to the male gaze
  • Prioritizing female creators and woman-centered narratives
The Feminist Porn Awards (FPAs), established in 2006 and now rebranded as the Toronto International Porn Festival, set their own criteria for what constitutes feminist porn. To be included in the competition, a movie had to:
  • Use erotic narratives that challenge stereotypes
  • Feature actors of color, non-gender conforming, disabled, fat, older, etc.
  • Put actors’ agency and pleasure at the center of the work
  • Ask for actors’ consent on all acts and provide them with a safe and clean work environment
  • Give performers the opportunity to revoke consent at any time

 

Is feminist porn effective?

The debate is on. For decades, the feminist movement has been divided into pro and anti-porn. 
On one hand, feminists in favor of pornography think that hot videos can celebrate female sexuality while decolonizing bodies and teaching about consent and pleasure. Producers often see themselves as more than just pornographers — they believe to be educators and activists too.
On the other hand, anti-porn feminist activists have long been convinced that an industry built on the objectification of women simply cannot call itself feminist. 
It’s true that of this $97 billion global industry (an NBC estimate of how much pornography was worth in 2014), only a tiny part is working towards change. Feminist porn remains undoubtedly a niche market
Yet it’s having immensely positive effects by putting women in leadership roles, believing victims, and taking swift actions in cases of sexual assault while amplifying the voice of sex workers, who are often reduced to a silent dichotomy of victim/empowered and happy individual — depending on what side of the fence the non-pornographer activist you’re speaking to sits. 
What about you?
Do you enjoy pornography or you haven’t found anything to your taste yet? Or maybe you know a feminist production company? Let us know and get in touch via Instagram @kinkykarrot

written by Bianca Fiore

SOURCES FOR THIS ARTICLE INCLUDE

https://www.webroot.com/us/en/resources/tips-articles/internet-pornography-by-the-numbers#:~:text=40%20million%20American%20people%20regularly,of%20porn%20viewers%20are%20women 

https://www.researchgate.net/figure/The-percentage-of-people-who-watch-do-not-watch-pornography-n-358_tbl2_327842228

http://my.ilstu.edu/~jawalsh/Sp13/CJS_201/Ch14_publicorder/pornuprapedown%20-%20D'Amato.pdf

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2011/oct/12/porn-society-government-opt-in

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13178-018-0345-x 

https://www.bbc.com/news/newsbeat-49330540 

https://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/not-safe-for-work-feminist-pornography-matters-sex-wars 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pornography_addiction 

 

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