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Porn Business Seizes Social Media

Porn Business Seizes Social Media

The pornography business, noting the wild success of social media that dwarfs its own, has figured out that social media can skyrocket the pornography business to new heights. The fact that social networking sites are four of the top ten most visited sites on the Internet gave pornography purveyors warning that they needed to attack social media to achieve greater success. Pew research found that 90% of 18 to 29-year-old Americans use social networking.

Now sites such as F*ckbook, Pornostagram, and PornTube are proliferating, allowing users to be interactive with their sites, commenting, sharing, etc.

Christian Thorn, who founded Pinsex, a social porn site akin to Pinterest, explained what drove him to create his site: “If people are putting that stuff up on social media, then they want a site that will allow them to do it. Pinsex had 50,000 users its first year and now receives 300,000 visits every day.

Thorn continued, “A few years ago nobody would have predicted that people would take pictures of their food and put them on Facebook. People would have said: ‘Who is interested in what I had for lunch today?’ There are a lot of users posting amateur porn on the site and that porn might not be as beautiful and airbrushed – like you see in magazines or whatever – but it’s very popular.”

Some porn connoisseurs assert that, by using social media, porn will become “democratized,” meaning alternative desires can come out of the closet. Susanna Paasonen, professor of media studies at University of Turku, Finland, explained:

The rise of social media in a range of forms has had a crucial impact on the kinds of pornography that are available and how it is made available. You get different production practices, different aesthetics and different politics. I started off studying mainstream online porn and now I don’t think I know what that is any more – it’s become so diverse. There are of course examples that are immediately recognisable as mainstream, but then on the same platforms you have all kinds of content that is a far cry from the mainstream.

Thorn agreed, saying, “We want to be a service for everybody because we’re a service that’s created by the users… In the old days people would say, ‘but women don’t like porn’ and we can see now that that’s not necessarily very true.”

Sharif Mowlabocus, a senior lecturer in media studies at the University of Sussex, argued that despite the change in emphasis by those involved in pornography, the status quo may not change. He said:

Those same types of sociality are still being used to uphold some very misogynist views. We need more than a technological platform to make those ideological shift. It’ll be interesting to see if those pornography networks seep out and connections start to be made with your personal email address. While porn has always had a social dimension, that social dimension has always been heavily policed.

He added, “In the end, when you think about the people you’re connected to on Facebook, there are a lot of people you wouldn’t want to share your sexual desires with.”

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