Male feminists and porn

(163 Posts)
AmyFarrahFowlerCooper Mon 15-Jul-13 11:09:12

Can a man who believes he is a feminist be interested in porn? Or does that kind of negate his believing he is a feminist?

FrameyMcFrame Wed 31-Jul-13 18:00:01

excellent post Dervel

Dervel Wed 31-Jul-13 02:50:08

Ultimately libertarianj even if I give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you are right about the majority of what you've posted it does not detract that for x many people engaged in any aspect of the sex industry that are all happy balanced and fine with it thank you very much there are x many people who suffer, are exploited and not even treated with the same common decency you would an animal. Now we can sit and pontificate at what numbers those x's might represent, and at best all either side is going to be able to muster educated guesses.

One unavoidable fact which you have unsurprisingly not addressed is that the overwhelming majority of those affected in that second number will be women, hence precisely why this is a feminist issue and why it is a perfectly reasonable question to raise that should a man consider himself a feminist can he also be a user of pornography? You can also add into the mix all those women who might be all happy happy joy joy about sex work, who may well have chosen other careers that would have been equally as lucrative if not for glass ceilings, patriarchal vested interests etc etc. Point being that the playing field is not level, and at least until that is addressed the choice of selling one's own body is not made in a vacum apart from other issues, so until that day dawn there is not a lot of merit to your position whatsoever.

Beachcomber Tue 30-Jul-13 14:27:42

Have you checked what this specifically means;

Video rentals generated more than US$4.28billion in 2005, representing 34% of the total market for all adult products (AVN, 2006).

It is in the notes of the study you linked to:

According to AVN (2006), 34% of pornographic texts are consumed through video sales and rentals, 6% through cable pay-per-view, 4% through hotel in-room video on demand, and 20% through Internet sources. Clearly, video sales and rentals are the preferred method of consumption in the United States. AVN, while not a “traditional” research publication, is the leading reporter of record for the adult industry, with a monthly circulation of more than 25,000 .

You declare it 'junk science' but you haven't even read it properly hmm

I think you are calling it junk science because you don't like its findings - that mainstream popular porn is violent and degrading to women and that the women are often portrayed as enjoying and 'asking for' that violence and degradation.

It speaks volumes that you think you spending 30 seconds on google and glancing at Alexa is much more valid that a comprehensive study conducted by several highly qualified people over a period of several months and hundreds of actual porn scenes. Have you read the credentials of the people who wrote that study?

Beachcomber Tue 30-Jul-13 14:14:30

libertarianj - "It's funny how he always seems to get wheeled out in these kind of discussions, I expect half of his web traffic is generated from mumsnetters using his website for 'research purposes' grin "

Yeah, fucking hilarious. That grin made me feel a bit sick.

Porn hounds always try to argue that Max Hardcore's films aren't popular.
The porn industry and the porn consumers stopped loving Max when he went to jail and became a bit of a liability. Up until then he and his films were hugely successful (1990s). He 'made' a lot of names - it was almost considered a right of passage for women in porn to do a scene with him.

His films have been hugely influential in the industry. He pushed boundaries of filmed violence against women and filmed degradation of women and a whole lot of people joined up to follow in his footsteps. Unfortunately. And now a lot of the stuff that he did that was considered extreme at the time is now all over the internet.

You may not be able to find very many of his films now (I don't know I haven't looked), but there is a whole genre of porn that is directly influenced by him. He is notorious - and not because no-one watched his films.

Nasty piece of low down inhumane shit that he was, he knew what would sell, you have to give him that (dubious) recognition.

TheDoctrineOfAllan Tue 30-Jul-13 13:55:34

Hi lib.

What do you define as soft porn?

libertarianj Tue 30-Jul-13 13:22:41

The Max Hardcore videos are some of the best selling porn videos.

Max is the extreme of the extreme and was even jailed for a couple of years for his obscene works. I would question your claim of him being one of the biggest sellers? He is despised in the industry, he is despised by porn lovers, his stuff is banned from many sites and forums. You will not find his works hosted on many sites at all. It's funny how he always seems to get wheeled out in these kind of discussions, i expect half of his web traffic is generated from mumsnetters using his website for 'research purposes' grin

also you say hundreds of thousands of views, to put things in perspective we were looking at 15 million views for that 'Next door Nikki' softcore site i mentioned earlier.

Have you actually read the study you linked to?

It clearly states in the abstract (on page 3) why they chose to analyse video rentals;

Although consumers access pornographic materials in a number of forms—including the Internet, cable and hotel video-on-demand, the telephone, and magazines—videotapes (VHS) and digital video discs (DVD) still generate the most income (AVN, 2006). In fact, rentals at adult video stores increased from US$75 million in 1986 to US$665 million just 10 years later (Stack et al., 2004), culminating in over 950 million adult videos rented annually by 2005 (AVN, 2006). Video rentals generated more than US$4.28billion in 2005, representing 34% of the total market for all adult products (AVN, 2006).

And do you know what that AVN is?

Yes, yes and er yes. Ok here we go:

a) Have you verified the accuracy of that AVN chart?, as all i am finding is that people are claiming it to be based on the number of adverts for a particular product not actual sales. Also that $ 4 billion figure has been disputed too as being massively inflated and when they challenged AVN they were a tad vague. Check Wiki (AVN magazine) and look at the history section. It's all there and it appears to be very dubious.

b) So they claim 34% of money is made from DVD products alone, but why didn't they consider the other mediums of the remaining 66%?

c) How many people actually go to a sex shop and buy porn or order it through the post, when it's all free on the internet? Do you really think that there are many people who go to this trouble? I'd estimate it to be only small percentage of people who still buy porn. It may generates a fair amount of profit but is still a niche market in the grand scheme of things. They are basically the equivalent of people who still buy music on vinyl.

So from that i would strongly disagree that the study uses a solid method. It's what i would term junk science

RoxyFox211 Tue 30-Jul-13 12:44:01

Yeah sure they can. I'm a feminist and I watch porn. It depends on your beliefs really (and obviously if the porn is consensual).

Beachcomber Tue 30-Jul-13 08:52:15

And another question about your critic of the study.

Do you know why most porn has historically been produced in California? And why the California studios have got so big?

a) they are protected by the first amendment in California. b) they have a monopoly.

www.firstamendment.com/site-articles/content-outside-california/

Beachcomber Tue 30-Jul-13 08:40:47

Have you actually read the study you linked to?

It clearly states in the abstract (on page 3) why they chose to analyse video rentals;

Although consumers access pornographic materials in a number of forms—including the Internet, cable and hotel video-on-demand, the telephone, and magazines—videotapes (VHS) and digital video discs (DVD) still generate the most income (AVN, 2006). In fact, rentals at adult video stores increased from US$75 million in 1986 to US$665 million just 10 years later (Stack et al., 2004), culminating in over 950 million adult videos rented annually by 2005 (AVN, 2006). Video rentals generated more than US$4.28billion in 2005, representing 34% of the total market for all adult products (AVN, 2006).

And do you know what that AVN is?

It is the Adult Video News. It is a trade journal for the porn industry - the biggest and most influential one. They also publish lists and reviews of the most popular porn films. If you want to know what porn consumers are wanking to, they are the people to go to.

In the current study, the designation of the films examined as “adult films” was ready-made by employing lists provided by AVN. The population of titles for this research was drawn from a compilation of 250 best-selling and 250 most rented video lists published monthly by AVN. The researchers selected the top 30 videos appearing on each list from December 2004 to June 2005. After deleting duplications, the population consisted of 275 titles (AVN, 2005). Fifty titles were randomly selected from this list to comprise the sample, yielding a total of 304 scenes. The sample, therefore, is meant to be generalized to the top titles of this 7-month period.

Sounds like a pretty solid method to me.

Beachcomber Tue 30-Jul-13 08:19:29

"therefore their viewing of soft porn shouldn't go against their feminist credentials."

Why? Who are you to declare such a thing?

I think it is up to women and feminists to decide that. And each woman (feminist or otherwise) will have her own opinion on that .

Golly gosh. Fancy that. Women as individuals with their own opinions.

Soft porn, hardcore porn, gonzo porn, gay porn, amateur porn, so called "feminist" porn are all on a sliding scale of the same thing. This is why they are all helpfully called porn . Because they are, um, porn.

We actually had a thread about this before with some posters trying to make out that most porn consumers are innocently watching soft focus lovey dovey images of women and men having gentle mutually satisfying consensual and straightforward intercourse after a bit of hand holding and gazing into each others eyes.

It Is Bullshit.

And women are not stupid.

The Max Hardcore videos are some of the best selling porn videos. Do you know what he does to women. Or just look up RedTube - here you go, here are some of the titles on the homepage;

*****warning nasty racist and misogynistic shite coming up****

German Sara Joy gets fucked in the ass
Asian chick enjoys dick
Petite cherry blonde teen Avril Hall rammed
Hot Japanese toilet blow job
My daughter is a porn start
Teen Natalie - Charlie's jail bait # 4
Ebony deep anal is nice

The categories which are in alphabetical order include ; Asian, Anal, blonde, Big Tits, Double Penetration, Facials, Japanese, Latina, Teens.

Down the bottom of the page is an advert for "Extreme videos - 18 and abused"

******end***********

All these videos have hundreds of thousands of views.

TheDoctrineOfAllan Tue 30-Jul-13 07:42:28

Lib, how do you define soft porn? For me, soft porn means knickers but no bra but I think you mean something different.

libertarianj Tue 30-Jul-13 01:52:54

where has that study been debunked Libetarianj? I only see it being quoted in lots of well respected publications and by people whose judgement I respect.

You say;
'Also why do we need some study based on a mere 300 + scenes when i have just demonstrated what is actually popular from Alexa stats which covers millions of scenes.'

But you're not bothering to answer or recognise the point that 'Asian' or 'Milf' categories don't preclude them from having aggressive and misogynistic material within.

should all be covered in here, by the legendary Brooke Magnanti www.amazon.co.uk/Sex-Myth-Everything-Were-Wrong/dp/029786639.

but lets take a look at this study titled: Aggression and sexual behavior in best-selling pornography videos.

g.virbcdn.com/_f/files/79/FileItem-273118-AgressionandSexualBehavior2010.pdf

first fatal flaw, they have only chosen a source of DVD's from the AVN network to review, so paid for porn from specific sex shops in the US. umm so why did they go for this?, when they could have chosen to use unbiased stats from sites like Alexa, which would have told them what the most popular viewed sites were worldwide? ( it wouldn't have given them the results they wanted i expect!) So they have narrowed it down to a very specific type of person who buys their porn on DVD from dedicated sex shops. hmm Then having a look at the AVN web site itself. Their so called chart does seem rather odd as nearly all the titles are by the same few studios based in California, and are mostly ones notorious for extreme porn. Also 41% of the scenes surveyed featured ATM!!! Right ok.... so they have basically done a study of 'extreme porn ' dvd's not mainstream at all. What a joke!

Finally going back to that Alexa site, from a bit of further analysis i noticed that when you discount the dating sites, web cams, the hosting sites and porn search engines, the top rated original content web site on that list is in fact Playboy Digital (softcore) and number 2 is Femjoy (softcore art erotica site). So there you go. However it would be quite interesting to do a full study of that list maybe expanding to the top 100 sites or beyond.

So to conclude your average man is not looking at extreme misogynistic porn and therefore their viewing of soft porn shouldn't go against their feminist credentials.

BasilBabyEater Mon 29-Jul-13 21:46:58

"Women are individuals, not wank categories based on their age, skin colour, ethnicity, male gazeified sexuality, etc."

Now you're just being hysterical. Try and see the bigger picture.

Or something.

hmm

FloraFox Mon 29-Jul-13 17:40:27

And the prize for the most astoundingly arrogant non-contribution goes to:

"why do we need some study based on a mere 300 + scenes when i have just demonstrated what is actually popular from Alexa stats which covers millions of scenes."

I am actually laughing out loud.

Beachcomber Mon 29-Jul-13 16:46:57

I can't believe soemone would post a list of popular porn searches and not see that terms like;

Teen, Indian, MILF, lesbian, amateur, etc are as offensive as fuck.

Women are individuals, not wank categories based on their age, skin colour, ethnicity, male gazeified sexuality, etc. Novel concept I know hmm

I actually PMSL at this piece of deluded nonsense;

"GoshAnneGorilla That the number four search term on your list "teen" doesn't really warm the cockles of my heart, is that the sort of oh so nice porn you're in to?

Just posting the facts, no need to shoot the messenger, also probably a popular search term with er... teenagers, maybe?"

"Teen" is a popular search for adult males who like to see girls who look underage be fucked by adult men. "Teen" is the same thing as "barely legal" which is a disgusting predatory term.

FrameyMcFrame Mon 29-Jul-13 15:42:25

where has that study been debunked Libetarianj? I only see it being quoted in lots of well respected publications and by people whose judgement I respect.

You say;
'Also why do we need some study based on a mere 300 + scenes when i have just demonstrated what is actually popular from Alexa stats which covers millions of scenes.'

But you're not bothering to answer or recognise the point that 'Asian' or 'Milf' categories don't preclude them from having aggressive and misogynistic material within.

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 29-Jul-13 14:22:08

Ah, so women being treated as fucktoys is sexual diversity?

You don't seem to understand that the objection many of us have to pornography is that far from being "diverse" it's appalling treatment if women dressed for the sole purpose of men's sexual gratification.

I would be intrigued as to what you would consider to be "valid facts" who is the judge of that validity - is it you?

Your arrogance, yet again is a very poor advert for men who watch porn.

libertarianj Mon 29-Jul-13 14:00:13

GoshAnneGorilla That the number four search term on your list "teen" doesn't really warm the cockles of my heart, is that the sort of oh so nice porn you're in to?

Just posting the facts, no need to shoot the messenger, also probably a popular search term with er... teenagers, maybe?

FrameyMcFrame here is a study showing that over 80% of popular pornography involves aggression.
It's from 2010 but I doubt much has changed for the better.

Ah isn't that the study that cherry picked some rough scenes from a selection of DVD's and passed them off as mainstream? This has already been comprehensibly debunked. Also why do we need some study based on a mere 300 + scenes when i have just demonstrated what is actually popular from Alexa stats which covers millions of scenes.

Dervel That a majority of pornography contains material that plays to particular power fantasies that involve the reduction of women to objects. Therefore can any man who indulges in consuming such material consider themselves a feminist?

Not sure we can ever meet in the middle when you make massive assumptions like that without any valid facts to back up these claims.
Also to pick up on one of your earlier posts what did you mean by this?:

I'm not sure if this is off topic, but perhaps it gives a hint to where human sexuality has gone off-piste, and by extension where pornography goes wrong

So you really think human sexuality has gone off-piste? How do you come to this conclusion? confused or is it the fact you don't approve of sexual diversity now that people have come out of the closet about a lot of things?

FrameyMcFrame Mon 29-Jul-13 08:58:22

Libitarianj, what you find within each sub category that you mention is not lovely softcore and fluffy. It's teens or Asian or whatever kind of women being aggressively treated.

here is a study showing that over 80% of popular pornography involves aggression.
It's from 2010 but I doubt much has changed for the better.

Dervel Mon 29-Jul-13 03:42:52

@libertarianj, I'm not sure this is a thread about defending porn, but wether or not it is that Top 10 doesn't seem to preclude mysoginistic material. One could have this "ethical" or softcore porn in most of those words of course, so I am not trying to prove the reverse. I'm simply pointing out that that top 10 doesn't really answer the salient point. That a majority of pornography contains material that plays to particular power fantasies that involve the reduction of women to objects. Therefore can any man who indulges in consuming such material consider themselves a feminist?

Now we have raised the point that perhaps sexual acts when viewed are not in and of themselves sexist or mysoginistic, but even when you look at the relatively tame end of the spectrum, page 3 say you can still see this rather nasty reduction of women seen in the inane comments often attributed to the models.

Perhaps in relation to the OP you feel that perhaps some kinds of porn is acceptable, and still consider oneself a feminist, and maybe you have a point. After all there are women who identify as feminists (third wave I think, but I stand to be corrected) who are pro porn insomuch as they are pro woman's choice, but I suspect one would have to know a hell of a lot more about feminism than I to advance that argument effectively.

Would it be possible for you and I to meet in the middle somewhere, for the purposes of this discussion? I don't think there is much of value that can be discussed if either of us adopts an inflexible position. I can accept that there are major vested interests that want to bias the discussion, both the porn industry wanting to carry on unregulated, or religious or conservative groups that want it blanket banned. In any case just throwing in one's lot with just one side means we're in danger of missing the truth.

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 29-Jul-13 02:37:41

I really, really like this post about clueless left wing blokes and feminism:
www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2013/07/why_this_class-conscious

TheDoctrineOfAllan Mon 29-Jul-13 00:57:53

Good post, gosh.

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 29-Jul-13 00:28:27

Ffs, do you really think we need you to guide us and once we've done a little Google search our womanly brains will be convinced?

What sort of arrogance you have, to claim we don't really know what it is we object to. hmm

That the number four search term on your list "teen" doesn't really warm the cockles of my heart, is that the sort of oh so nice porn you're in to?

libertarianj Mon 29-Jul-13 00:00:24

Well if you check out most the other sites on that list, they are predominately softcore. Web cam sites are massively popular with 5 of them in the top 20 and they mostly feature solo performers.

The general gist is that the soft core solo stuff doesn't work for people who have viewed a lot of porn.

I don't think that is the case for most people though, i think that people tend to stick to what they like. It's like everything else there will always be some people who go overboard but the vast majority will do things in moderation. I am also struggling to find much research to indicate your statement to be true, other than biased religious sites.

Things like bukake etc.. That's not hardcore nowadays, it's ubiquitous

But that is still a very niche fetish with not many titles/ performers featuring/ performing that. There is no way that is standard fare. hmm
It's not featuring in this worldwide survey of searches either:

www.pornmd.com/sex-search

The top ten porn searches for the UK were.

1. British
2. Indian
3. Milf
4. Teen
5. Lesbian
6. Mature
7. POV
8. Lisa Ann
9. Squirt
10. Amatuer

FrameyMcFrame Sun 28-Jul-13 19:23:01

Blowjobs feature heavily - almost always rough.
Things like bukake etc.. That's not hardcore nowadays, it's ubiquitous

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