Monday, August 04, 2014

Why I stopped watching porn

Actually I hardly ever watch porn - I find my own fantasies are much more satisfying than the standard ugly-men-screwing-Barbie-dolls-without-human-conversation which is what most porn appears to be about. But it does seem like it's becoming a problem with a segment of young men who come to see the tropes of Internet pornography as the essence of sex. I just watched the movie Don Jon which addresses that.

This TED Talk below addresses the reason for the distancing effect - because cameras need to be able to see penile penetration, so hands must be kept out of the way.

This man seems so sweet when he talks, especially about the insidious effects of porn - the complete depersonalization of human sexual response.

I don't know though if I agree with him when he makes the leap from porn to slut-shaming: he talks about young women making videos with their boyfriends and then those boyfriends sharing the videos and then the young women being humiliated and hounded and socially isolated - in some cases to the point of suicide.

The self-made videos may be depictions of sex, but they are not in fact "porn" - porn is made by actors being paid to have sex. The videoing of a sincere sexual event, even if there is betrayal later, is not in itself "porn." And slut-shaming is not an essential part of porn. It's true that the same people who consume porn may look down on the people, especially women who make porn (as was so well represented in Boogie Nights) but that is not the fault of porn.

And although there is no doubt that too much porn is violent misogyny, I did a survey of porn a couple of years ago, and I did not find that most of it was misogynistic - although it was certainly aimed at men and the porn actors generally seemed very stupid - although that might have been the result of their terrible acting.

I like his concept of emotional safe sex though.

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