Who Makes and Watches Porn?

The way porn is talked about in our society, you would think that the dog porndevil himself was behind the camera, calling the shots. But porn is the work of a team of people who make it their business to help you get off. From the sound crew to the makeup artists to the directors and actors, the porn industry is filled with nice, regular, hard-working people, not monsters or weirdos or perverts or victims. Some people think sex is fun and enjoyable and are happy to get paid money to do it onscreen or direct it from behind the cameras. And while there are certainly sleazy people in the porn industry, this is true of every industry. In fact, understanding that porn actors are people, not puppets, can help you look at porn in a whole new way. In the clip below sex educator and porn actress Nina Hartley talks about why she got into the industry.

Porn is Made for an Audience

internet-porn

Porn stats — Click to enlarge.

Obviously. But what might be less obvious is that the audience for porn is assumed to be almost exclusively men. Okay, maybe that’s obvious too. And anyways, isn’t it only men who like porn and isn’t it only men who think about sex and masturbate regularly? Actually, studies show that the audience for online porn is roughly 70% men and 30% women* — and this number may in fact be even higher, since 70% of women also admit to keeping their cyber activities secret or lying about watching porn. But regardless of who is actually viewing porn, the perception that it is mostly men drives the production of pornography. And since men are thought to be stimulated primarily by sexual images, it is assumed that they don’t care about plot or characters — hence the notoriously cheesy “You need me to hold that for you? Wow it’s so huge!” dialogue for which porn is famous.

The assumption that it is mainly men watching porn also means that the content of porn is usually centered around relationships and activities that men supposedly find sexy. In straight porn, men are generally depicted dominating women, and women are shown in fits of frenzy trying to please men. As a fantasy this is fine, but when this idea — that women exist for men’s pleasure — is blurred with the reality of actual female sexual desire, it can become a problem. That’s why it is important that you engage with porn with a critical eye. Enjoy the hell out of it, but remember that it is a product like any other — it has been packaged and sold to you by a large corporation that is hoping to profit off of a fantasy it has created. You don’t eat a Big Mac every time McDonald’s tells you to — and you should take porn just as seriously.

* “Stats on Internet Pornography.” http://www.onlinemba.com/blog/stats-on-internet-pornography/

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s