# Why is porn so addicting?

by kramer733
P: 3,390
 Quote by brainstorm I believe there is a long tradition of using sexual taboos to induce shame because this facilitates a certain kind of social power. The game is to make something very enticing and easy to get, and then make it taboo so people will feel ashamed of doing it. This, in turn, creates a sense of fear in people of getting caught doing things that are naughty, which in turn makes them submissive to authority. Who dares to stand up for themselves knowing that they themselves are guilty of wrongdoing? As such, I think a culture emerges that is like a kind of mutual acceptance of wrongdoing, which allows people to get away with all kinds of nasty abuses of power. Shame and social power, see the connection?
Brainstorm, you've gone right off topic now. You're just making this up as you go along. Are you stuck in the 60's?

I think you'll find that the "fear of getting caught" can actually increase excitment and to simply assert that it makes people conform is incorrect.

What nasty abuses of power are you talking about?
P: 3,390
 Quote by Kmenex Not true.
I will say, amateur items are popping up far more across the internet within the last few years and it is gaining on the professional stuff.

If you look at any adult site, the majority of videos you will come across are produced, generally in a professional manner.

The porn industry has been around for many, many years but it is only with recent technology that the majority of amateur films have been made and had the ability to be put on the net.

I'm trying to get some stats here but it isn't the easiest term to search for.

EDIT: From the sites below, there has been an 1800% growth in the porn industry from 1998.
P: 3,390
http://www.internetnews.com/bus-news...le.php/3083001

And very interesting:
http://www.healthymind.com/s-porn-stats.html

 Sex Industry Statistics * $57.0 billion revenue world-wide1 *$12.0 billion of this is US revenue, more than all combined revenues of all professional football, baseball and basketball franchises or the combined revenues of ABC, CBS, and NBC (6.2 billion). $2.5 of the$12 billion is related to internet porn.1 Porn on the Web * 25% of total search engine requests are porn-related. (Top three searches: sex, mp3 and hotmail.)2 * 8% of total emails are porn-related. Average daily pornographic emails are 4.5 per internet user1 * 12% of total websites are pornographic1 Affecting Children * 100,000 websites offer illegal child pornography1 * Child pornography generates $3 billion annually1 * 90% of 8-16 year olds have viewed porn online (most while doing homework)1 * Average age of first internet exposure to pornography is 11 years old1 * Largest consumer of internet pornography 12-17 age group1 Affecting Adults * 20% of men admit accessing pornography at work1 * 13% of women admit accessing pornography at work1 * 53% of Promise Keeper men viewed pornography the previous week in one study1 * 10% of adults admit having internet sexual addiction1 Business Productivity * 70 percent of all internet porn traffic occurs during the 9-to-5 workday.2 * Nearly one out of three companies has terminated an employee for inappropriate web use.2 (Some of this could be for liability reasons discussed below.) * According to Internet Data Center research 30 to 40 percent of employee internet activity is non business-related, costing millions of dollars in productivity.2 This does not mean all the activity is porn related. For example, the cost to businesses in lost employee productivity from the internet broadcasts of the Starr report and the Clinton grand-jury video was in excess of$450 million, according to a study reported by ZDNet.2 Business and Legal Ramifications * Internet porn introduces the issue of a hostile work environment relative to internet use. Whereas lewd jokes, questionable bulletin board items or inappropriate comments used to put companies in hot water, employees today are accessing websites that promote hate groups, pornography and illegal activities. Viewed by an offended co-worker, any of these cyber-activities can bring lawsuits upon a company.2 * Several Fortune 500 companies have created an “acceptable use policy” for internet usage, including a disclaimer about the dangers of the internet, a summary of appropriate and inappropriate uses of the internet (i.e., no personal commercial uses, no illegal copying, etc.), a statement about avoiding frivolous use (i.e., downloading large personal files, engaging in chat rooms, etc.) and a ‘no expectation of privacy’ statement that waives privacy rights over any materials sent or created using the company’s computer network.2 Sources: 1From http://www.internetfilterreview.com/...tatistics.html - September, 2003 2From http://www.websense.com/products/resources/wp/hr_wp.pdf - September, 2003 (page no longer available on web)
P: 1,117
 Quote by jarednjames Brainstorm, you've gone right off topic now. You're just making this up as you go along.
It does seem a little off-topic, but I think it is relevant to the topic of porn being addictive. In fact, physiological addictions are often exploited to have a social function of compelling people to comply with the will of others regardless of their own judgment. This is why drug-addiction is so often linked to crime; i.e. because people are willing to do (almost) anything to get their fix.

 I think you'll find that the "fear of getting caught" can actually increase excitment and to simply assert that it makes people conform is incorrect.
Probably so. However, this only adds to the potential for compulsion and social power. If you think about getting caught doing something shameful by an authority figure, such as a parent, manager, police, judge, or in Tiger Woods' case the media; then you would be willing to go to extensive lengths to avoid being put through the shame and embarrassing your family and friends, etc.

The way people avoid such negative attention is by conforming as strictly as possible to create a social image that allows them to avoid public attention. E.g. if Tiger Woods or Bill Clinton would have had less exceptional public reputations, their sexual behavior wouldn't have been paraded around so mercilessly.

 What nasty abuses of power are you talking about?
Let's say you are a manager who can never get people to work certain shifts. Then you catch one of your employees doing something embarrassing or against the rules. You can then threaten to expose that employee for their behavior if they don't cater to you. Generally this kind of thing occurs unspoken. People simply get in the habit of cooperating because they live with a sense of shame and fear of getting exposed and/or punished for wrong-doing.

I think that sexual taboos play a role in spreading this state of mind/conscience that allows many people to be used and abused without protest.
P: 3,390
 Quote by brainstorm I think that sexual taboos play a role in spreading this state of mind/conscience that allows many people to be used and abused without protest.
I'd like to see some citations for this lot.
P: 1,117
 Quote by jarednjames I'd like to see some citations for this lot.
I can't think of any off-hand, but I am curious why you find it such a doubtful claim.
Emeritus
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P: 11,154
 Quote by OmCheeto Quit a while back, child mortality rates were probably such that only one child survived from each woman. This can be inferred from the incredibly flat population graph over the last 10,000 years, up until recently of course.
The seemingly flat portion is merely an artifact of plotting population on a linear scale when growth is better represented on a logarithmic scale.

Here's the wiki image that looks similar to yours:

I took the raw data from there and replotted that on a log scale, below:

There's somewhat non-negligible growth going back many thousands of years.
P: 3,390
 Quote by brainstorm I can't think of any off-hand, but I am curious why you find it such a doubtful claim.
It's more this section I'm curious about and want citations for:
"that allows many people to be used and abused without protest."

I know it is seen as somewhat taboo, but it is the claims you are making around this that intrigue me.
P: 1,117
 Quote by jarednjames I know it is seen as somewhat taboo, but it is the claims you are making around this that intrigue me.
I thought the example of a concrete situation that I gave would be sufficient to illustrate the effect.
P: 3,390
 Quote by brainstorm I thought the example of a concrete situation that I gave would be sufficient to illustrate the effect.
Is that situation really common place? Has it happened enough to prove your hypothesis on it forcing people to conform? Again, if you could cite some sources on this to backup the claims you make I'd be happy to accept it, but as it stands I don't think the few cases that do occur justify your claims.
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P: 1,366
 Quote by Gokul43201 The seemingly flat portion is merely an artifact of plotting population on a linear scale when growth is better represented on a logarithmic scale. Here's the wiki image that looks similar to yours: I took the raw data from there and replotted that on a log scale, below: There's somewhat non-negligible growth going back many thousands of years.
I disagree. From your log graph, I come up with a 20 year generational increase in population of 1.00675, for the years -5000 to -4000 bce. That's an increase of less than 1% every 20 years. And it appears to remain fairly flat between -5000 to 1400 AD. Compared to our current 1.2% increase every year, I'd say it is completely negligible.

If we'd remained at that rate from -5000 until today, we'd have a population of roughly 53 million people on the planet. Roughly the same as the combined population of our 4 most populous cites: Shanghai, Mumbai, Karachi, and Delhi.

When log scales look exponential, vs linear, something's amiss.

I'm afraid I'm going to stick with my "Randy" hypothesis.
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P: 4,154
 Quote by Gokul43201 The seemingly flat portion is merely an artifact of plotting population on a linear scale when growth is better represented on a logarithmic scale. Here's the wiki image that looks similar to yours: I took the raw data from there and replotted that on a log scale, below: There's somewhat non-negligible growth going back many thousands of years.
But you still see an exponential growth on a logarithmic scale! Interesting that the change from linear (on the logarithmic) to exponential is right around where Tetragrammaton began killing the many gods. (391 AD is when Paganism was banned and Christianity became the official Roman religion).

But I think imperialism, technology, and growth itself had a lot to do with that. You can only fill up the Earth so much before you don't have too go far to bump into other people and bump uglies.
P: 1,117
 Quote by Pythagorean But you still see an exponential growth on a logarithmic scale! Interesting that the change from linear (on the logarithmic) to exponential is right around where Tetragrammaton began killing the many gods. (391 AD is when Paganism was banned and Christianity became the official Roman religion). But I think imperialism, technology, and growth itself had a lot to do with that. You can only fill up the Earth so much before you don't have too go far to bump into other people and bump uglies.
Could also have to do with decreasing popularity of rape, adultery, and infanticide as Judeo-Christian morality spread like an STI.
P: 3,390
 Quote by brainstorm Could also have to do with decreasing popularity of rape, adultery, and infanticide as Judeo-Christian morality spread like an STI.
Morality? What like the morality that led to the crusades or witch burnings?

I think we're straying rather rapidly of the porn addiction issue here.
P: 43
 Quote by OmCheeto I disagree. From your log graph, I come up with a 20 year generational increase in population of 1.00675, for the years -5000 to -4000 bce. That's an increase of less than 1% every 20 years. And it appears to remain fairly flat between -5000 to 1400 AD. Compared to our current 1.2% increase every year, I'd say it is completely negligible. If we'd remained at that rate from -5000 until today, we'd have a population of roughly 53 million people on the planet. Roughly the same as the combined population of our 4 most populous cites: Shanghai, Mumbai, Karachi, and Delhi. When log scales look exponential, vs linear, something's amiss. I'm afraid I'm going to stick with my "Randy" hypothesis.
what about reduction of death rate,infant death rate, maternal mortality ?

These also contributed to population growth.
Emeritus
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P: 11,154
 Quote by OmCheeto I disagree. From your log graph, I come up with a 20 year generational increase in population of 1.00675, for the years -5000 to -4000 bce. That's an increase of less than 1% every 20 years. And it appears to remain fairly flat between -5000 to 1400 AD. Compared to our current 1.2% increase every year, I'd say it is completely negligible.
I'm happy to have you disagree after looking at the data in a meaningful manner that allows to do the calculation you just did, rather than with data displayed in a manner that essentially obscures its value.

After all, the plot below also has a flat portion extending over most of the time involved...

...despite the fact that it is a pure exponential:
P: 1,117
 Quote by jarednjames Morality? What like the morality that led to the crusades or witch burnings? I think we're straying rather rapidly of the porn addiction issue here.
It was a response to the post regarding how population growth accompanied the shift to Christianity. If you wanted to avoid discussing this, why throw in the little jab about the crusades and witch burnings, which btw seem to be the result of moral overkill rather than the same kind of pre-Christian ethics that permitted adultery, rape, and infanticide.

Sexual control, as a result of moral discipline, may also have a lot to do with why porn is so addictive. In repressing sexuality, alternative sexual outlets become more seductive. This is Foucault's repressive hypothesis from The History of Sexuality.
 P: 47 Anything that pleasures the brain can become addicting. People really aren't that complicated: we seek pleasure and seek to avoid pain. It's really that simple. If pain or zero pleasure is associated with a stimulus instead of pleasure, the brain will seek to avoid that stimulus. There's no reward. If people eat only bland, healthy food, the pleasure reward is gone, the desire to eat is gone, and weight is lost.

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