Is porn really a big deal?

Whenever the need for education on porn gets mentioned, people often look bemused.  It seems that most people, especially most adults, have no idea how prevalent the use of pornography is among young people today.

Consider the following from the Burnet Institute*:

Porn is also prevalent among young women too.  In the same study from the Burnet Institute, they found:

Countless other studies have found pornography use to be significantly prevalent among young people in the western world today.  The ease and accessibility of porn has come about via high speed internet and the countless devices in every home.  While there aren't as many studies on younger children, one study** found that:

 

Why is this such a big deal?  One reason is that porn, for many young people, has become their main source of education on sex.  And porn isn't sex education, its sexist education.  Consider the following from a study*** of the top 50 porn films of 2010 :

88% of porn scenes contained acts of physical aggression

49% of porn scenes contained acts of verbal aggression

The aggressive acts were overwhelmingly perpetrated by men against women

 

Whilst most young people understand that porn doesn't depict real sex, it has been shown to shape attitudes and sexual taste. The effects of porn on people will obviously be shaped by a large range of factors.  In a variety of different studies, a number of issues have been found to correlate with porn use that are of significant concern.  These include:

In every school in the country, the majority of young men are consuming pornography with startling regularity.  None of this means that viewing porn will immediately cause all consumers to be effected in the same way; these things are complex.  However, considering porn's ubiquity and the range of correlation between porn and harmful effects, the need for greater awareness and education is essential. Get in touch and see how we can be of help.

*Statistics taken from the Burnet Institute's submission to the Senate Inquiry into the harm being done to Australian children by pornography.  The Burnet Institute's submission is no. 61.  Their statistics come from a 2015 survey.  You can access their submission here.
**Fleming, M. J., S. Greentree, D. Cocotti-Muller, K. A. Elias, and S. Morrison. (2006). Safety in cyberspace: adolescents’ safety and exposure online. Youth & Society, 38(2): 135-154.
***Bridges, Ana J., Robert Wosnitzer, Erica Scharrer, Chyng Sun, and Rachael Liberman (2010). Aggression and Sexual Behavior in Best-Selling Pornography Videos: A Content Analysis Update. Violence Against Women, 16(10): 1065-85.