Yet Another Porn Post

Ah, yes, the latest moral panic: internet porn addiction. The latest emission is this piece of shit about how porn is destroying men’s ability to have normal sex.

Notice how solipsistic the reporting is. The writer does not talk to anyone outside his own age group and frankly anyone far outside his own social group. His “research” consists of quotes from Google University. No studies are cited, just anecdotes. No historical or sociological perspective is applied. Frankly, this would barely pass muster in a college sociology course.

And that approach is the reason the story is just a steaming turd. He says nothing about whether fantasy has always played a role in men’s sexual response (hint: it has). Nothing about how, for many men, the “other woman” used to be another woman instead of porn. He never finds out if previous generations of men would lose interest in their girlfriends or wives (hint: they did). Never asks if the explosion of porn is related to the dramatic decline in rape and sexual assault. He never looks at whether porn has liberated women from the ridiculous notion that they should only be interested in vanilla sex — and that only sparingly. No. It’s yet another in the long and shameful line of “Eeek! Technology!” scare stories illustrated with a few awkward bedroom anecdotes. Because we all know that no one had awkward bedroom anecdotes before, say, 1997. We know that previous generations never had unrealistic expectations about their partners.

Hell, one thing I could take from the story is that he thinks porn’s role in breaking down the “Madonna-Whore Complex” is a bad thing.

PS: Dear Writer: The phrase “to invesigate a theory” actually means objective research. On a sample greater than one. It doesn’t mean giving up porn and proclaiming a revelation. That’s called religion.

Update: Robert Heinlein used to say that every generation thinks they invented sex. I would add that every generation thinks it’s suddenly gone wrong.

Update: And another thing. If the internet is creating such unrealistic expectation about women and sex, why is amateur pornography, which frequently breaks from the professional model, so popular? Why are the some of the most popular porn stars the ones who haven’t had plastic surgery?

This subject needs thought and debate, not hysterics and self-absorption.

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