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-   -   Poly, Voyeurism and Porn (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=25147)

Scott 06-28-2012 02:54 PM

Poly, Voyeurism and Porn
I just came across a video that brought up issues regarding porn in what seemed to be a pretty funny way. That being said, I think the points it brought up were pretty good. I've touched on the subject of porn briefly in the past, in the The crossover between Polyamory, Swinging and Sex work thread, but I'm thinking that it deserves a thread of its own, as I think it's a far more pervasive meme in our culture then polyamory, swinging and sex work combined.

For starters, I'm doing the poll above, but I would like more then just multiple choice responses; I'd like to hear lengthy explanations as to what you think of porn in general, whether you think all porn is bad, or if you (like me) think there's good (feminist even) porn and bad porn, and the qualities that make porn good or bad. Even the definition of porn itself is up for debate; what does porn mean to you and why do you define it this way?

km34 06-28-2012 06:00 PM

I tend to watch the higher-budget, bad plot line porn (like the Pirates ones).

I don't like the 100% sex, grungy looking stuff.

I don't think porn is bad in general. I think most people in the industry choose to be there, and by discriminating a wee bit about which companies you support you can feel pretty darn confident that there isn't any coercion going on. Think about how many porn performers in recent years have become almost brand-like (Jenna Jameson and Ron Jeremy off the top of my head). They are taking their sexuality and owning it. Nothing wrong with that. A lot of the bigger name performers are also highly educated people who have made the choice to go into a field that is very lucrative. I know Lexington Steele has at least one master's degree (possibly two?) and used to work on Wall Street.

(And right now I feel like I know a lot about porn stars... lol)

To me, porn is anything that actually portrays sex acts - masturbation, oral, PIV or anal intercourse. So, any videos that show the actual penis going somewhere or the actual vagina being stimulated = porn. Any books/magazines that describe sex acts in detail = porn. A movie that has a sex scene done under covers = not porn because it isn't explicitly shown to be happening, it is implied by their movements/other behaviors.

ThatGirlInGray 06-28-2012 07:23 PM

What I tend to consider "good" porn is halfway decent production, safe and responsible responsible companies (I LIKE to see condoms used) and I generally like parodies that are poking fun of themselves as much as the original. I don't like porn that has really crappy production, takes itself too seriously, or portrays humiliating, violent, or other demeaning scenarios. I want the porn I watch to portray consensual fun, since that's what I practice and what I get off on.

ETA: A sense of humor, whether in porn or during sex, is a MUST. Porn is funny. Sex is funny. If you can't laugh at/during sex imo you're probably taking things WAY too seriously and not actually having fun, which is generally (as I see it) the point.

RainyGrlJenny 06-28-2012 07:49 PM

I don't really have a problem with porn. My personal tastes tend to run towards that which has a little more of a plot, at least a facade of romance, and usually features w/w or m/m action :) I'm not particularly kinky, and portrayal of non-consensual acts are not appealing to me either. I also enjoy amateur porn. I think real bodies with real people bumbling around having a good time and wanting to share it is very sexy.

However, I lean more towards erotic literature. I'm like that in general - I like movies, but I'd rather read a book.

Regardless, I think that, like much of the world, most porn is fine, produced by consenting adults who choose to be a part of that realm of entertainment. I think it would be a hoot to act in a porno! Unfortunately, I'm a teacher and have to be a little careful about that kind of thing, so it will have to wait until I retire. I wonder if there's a market for geriatric porn? :)

My definition of porn is a visual product (photo or video) where the main purpose is to incite or stimulate sexual feelings and behaviors.

BTW, my favorite part of that video you posted was the dancing dildos!

Tonberry 06-28-2012 08:01 PM

What I like the most is actually reading porn, not watching it. But your question was about watching so I'll focus on that.

I do watch porn, although not very often. I need to be in the right mood for it. In my opinion, porn is good if you don't abuse it, like most of life's pleasures. For instance studies show that porn availability correlates with decrease in rapes.
Not that I think most people would rape others to begin with, but it fits with my use for it, which is for release when I'm under sexual pressure.

It differs from my enjoyment of written porn, which I do for completely different reasons. I feel like all books should have the sex scenes in them, so to me erotic books are just the way normal books should be. Same with movies, really, I have always found it weird when the whole point of a story or plot point is the relationship between two people, and when they finally get together it's cut the second they start kissing, then we see them after the fact.
If it's relevant to the story, why do you cut it out? It feels to me like replacing every marriage scene with them arriving in the car, then leaving in the car the next second, skipping the character development that could happen in the meantime.

But for movies, I understand that actual people are involved, so I find it less of a problem. For books, though, cutting it out feels to me like I'm reading the censored version of a better book. It annoys me.

Sadly, erotic books can have the opposite problem of being focused too much on sex, but fortunately, not all of them do, often it's a very minor part of the story.

For all media, I have an issue with finding things that do it for me. Books written for women tend to have an emphasis on cunnilingus or fingering, neither of which I like, and lack fellatio, which is my favourite. Videos tend to feature men who don't look enough like men I know to allow me to fantasize about them (I'm usually too busy thinking about how much these huge penises would hurt me) and lack focus on the men's faces as they orgasm, and the males aren't noisy enough.
For visual porn, I also prefer material that doesn't feature females. I started by watching handjob videos, and in one of them there was a second man who started giving a blowjob, and I suddenly realised that gay material would be perfect... I thought. It still tends to emphasize big penises and show the penis at the time of climax rather than the face.

Also for all media, they tend to lack realism. The erotic books tend to have idealized pink unicorn versions of sex where the woman always comes several time, the last at the same time as the guy, and the videos or comics tend to have very specific body types that aren't that common, and cut off some important parts. And neither have nearly enough fumbling around and laughing about it.

ThatGirlInGray 06-28-2012 08:07 PM


and cut off some important parts
*snerk!* I really hope you mean cut OUT some important parts! :p

Tonberry 06-28-2012 08:11 PM

Haha sorry, it's not my first language and prepositional verbs are one of the difficult things for me to get right. I did mean cut out, yes :)

JynLove 06-28-2012 08:36 PM

DH and I enjoy some porn. but not much. I see it as a respectable industry as long as all involved are consensual. Heck I sell adult toys, who would I be to judge the porn industry? lol!

ThatGirlInGray 06-28-2012 09:14 PM

Well, there is the perspective that porn perpetuates the objectification of people for sexual gratification, whereas adult toys actually ARE objects, so no harm done. I don't necessarily agree with that perspective, but views on the two subjects aren't necessarily similar. :)

GalaGirl 06-28-2012 09:59 PM

what you think of porn in general?

It's long had a place in human history.

what does porn mean to you and why do you define it this way?

It's a pitstop on the spectrum of "erotic materials." From lightweight comics to hardcore movies. Somewhere there's a shift from "erotic" to "soft porn" to "hard core porn" and I think every person has their own spectrum analysis.

Just like in sex. What I might find "soft" someone else may find "hard or kinky."

whether you think all porn is bad, or if you (like me) think there's good (feminist even) porn and bad porn?

Some's good, some's badly made.

Some floats my boat, some doesn't.

Some is feministy and some ain't. It's been a long time since I subscribed to Bust Magazine but I remember the last page was the "one handed read" :)

and the qualities that make porn good or bad.

I incline to written word, and for images? Fine art end of things - think coffee table books that are well produced. Vintage stereocards. Paintings, sculpture, etc. I also enjoy natural shots of real people. I miss Yellow Silk magazine. Sigh.

If I'm going to watch a movie, it is rare. But if so? Feminist porn awards is my go to list to search for new titles.


I like decent production, care in creation. Be it a book or a movie or whatever. Could be the greatest story but please get editor and deal with typos, designer to do a decent book jacket. YKWIM?

I enjoy people that seem to love what they do in their work. Well written prose, natural bodies, diversity of bodies, personalities, etc.

To me, sex is a celebration, a pleasure, a joy, a function of the body.

Objectification is dehumanizing, so I really don't want to see porn that treats people as things. But as people. I esp enjoy when the movie includes cast interviews/commentary and the cast clearly had a good time making the project. Or there's introduction, foreward, or afterward that show the authors enjoyed contributing to a collection or had a good time making the print media item.


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