Really not quite the way that I’d put it

More specifically, The Butterfly Effect is a four-hour, seven-part exploration of the impact of the tech industry on the porn industry. It’s about the way free porn sites, notably PornHub, have made it very hard for porn workers to make a living.

The music industry has gone through similar upheaval, but musicians get more sympathy than porn actors (and can make money doing live gigs), Ronson says.

I’m really quite certain that sex has a live gig employment section.

23 thoughts on “Really not quite the way that I’d put it”

  1. Aaand yet again we see people failing to comprehend that the purpose of all production is consumption.

    The consumers like the free content, which makes the pro content a harder sell. Indeed. So it does. But the pro content was being made for the punters, not for the pro content providers.

  2. In 3 forms. Stripping, escorting and cam work. A lot of porn stars made a lot of money from stripping.

    Cam work is arguably better for women than doing porn as there’s no permanent record, so not the same career stigma
    (this even includes things like cam operators being able to block people in their own country from seeing them).

    Even without piracy, people would have gotten poorer because the amount of product is increasing and every new porn scene is competing with an ever-increasing back catalogue, and it’s now easy for anyone to make and distribute porn. Some of the fall in the price of music is about piracy, but a lot is just how much recorded music now exists.

    The girls rates have fallen over the years, but the people who’ve really suffered with porn are the production and distribution people. The value of that has collapsed. Anyone can film porn – you point a video camera at people fucking. Editing it is a doddle. And plenty of people will do that stuff even if it only pays what McDonalds pays. Given the choice, do you serve up big macs, or shoot porn? But female performers won’t lower their rates. If rates fell, a lot would quit and do something else.

  3. A sex worker can’t perform in front of tens of thousands of fans at Wembley. So not strictly analogous to a musician.

  4. Alex – can do yes. A great live performance by someone with videos can help sell the videos as you will want to see them again.

    Hadn’t heard of Pornhub in quite some time, its perhaps not been a major player?
    New sites setting up by the thousands offering cheap product that is subsidised by the investors / guys with cameras to get sex will impact pricing for the end product. A large supply of girls will, as any economist tell you, affect price of the stars.

  5. So technology is abolishing gynaecological smut? Good for the Puritans, who are normally anti-tech. Less good for pro-tech, progress crowd, who are normally more laisser faire.

    On the other hand, technology in the form of CGI will probably create life-like porn without the need for ‘actors’ at all.

  6. “Yeah but musicians use their live performances to promote recorded content. Is that how it works in porn?”

    Yeah, can do. Besotted “fans” of a cam girl will pay for her back catalogue of photos and vids. Big market for the “amateur” stuff again cutting out the production side. Also significant margin in selling them “your” products eg sex toys – just do it via drop shipping, a good camming platform may well have this option installed for you. Just make sure you demonstrate that model of dildo or whatever extensively in your live shows. Signed memorabilia works too. The small touring bands make a bit on merch too don’t they?

    Friend of mine decided camming beat prostitution where she had been stalked and even raped by one of her more possessive regulars. Also long hours between clients so headline rate looked healthy but didn’t really sort her out money wise. Camming let her go mobile. Combine work online with foreign travel. If money was precarious she would sometimes top up by sleeping with a fan for a price but ultimately camming got her off the game. Also paid bit better than her other main line of work (moderator/chat host on online bingo live chat) though in the end she used her love of travel, switched focus to languages tuition (again online, Skype this time) and found that paid better than the camming.

    And that’s not at great rates either, about the same as a starving undergrad might charge for GCSE tutoring so shows how little money’s in it if you’re at the bottom end. Scale’s the thing – a few hundred fans incl a couple of dozen “superfans” and you’re golden, but that definitely takes a certain kinda personality (ditto with telly celebs or vlogers who “make it”, it’s a funny skillset but not everyone can pass screen-test for it, many people’s personality just goes flat on-screen) and a certain kinda body, perhaps at unobtainable surgical expense.

  7. Edward Lud,

    Using one DB, I counted around 50 straight movies a week being added. That’s full-length DVDs. So, around 2500 movies a year. And that doesn’t include scenes on websites, which is now a bigger market. And that’s only what people have told that DB about.

    There might actually be more porn being made than ever before. There’s complaints from various people about the decline of “the industry”, but that’s the old industry. It ignores the industry that’s appeared since the internet came along. In the pre-internet days porn was rather homogenous and vanilla. Limited shelf space will do that. And tiny numbers of companies had most of the market. When the shelf becomes unlimited in size, you get all sorts of stuff getting produced.

    And when you look at the cost, you can make porn for tiny markets. $1000 to film a scene. If you sell the scene for $5, that’s only 200 people who have to buy it to break even. And some porn is the performer making it themselves – they don’t get paid, but collect the income.

    This is also one thing no-one mentions about free sites. A lot of it is marketing. A lot of videos are put there by small producers who want you to sign up. It doesn’t matter if 1m people watch your video and only 1000 sign up. The ratio is irrelevant. You still get 1000 signups and that pays the mortgage.

  8. As in other walks of life, there are strata within sex-work. Actress (mainstream) look down on actress (porn) who look down on strippers etc etc all the way down to the street worker at the (perceived) bottom of the pile. As a general rule therefore porn actresses don’t engage with paying clients, considering that to be beneath them (“I’m not a prostitute”).

  9. Edward – yes there is a considerable amount of cgi stuff available online. Including stuff that would be illegal on humans but merely get classed as 18 online.

  10. So Much For Subtlety

    I think they are missing the bigger picture here. I mean, the real issue is not how free porn is displacing professional smut. It is how the world-wide search for talent is bringing in sop many pretty girls and providing them with world-class plastic surgery.

    Which means that there is so little work for the out-of-shape, semi-retired male pensioner who wouldn’t mind getting it on with Asia Carrera or Jenna Jamieson in front of the cameras for good money.

    I think there ought to be a law. For all those poor men, of course. Not me personally.

  11. @Anon: Camwhores are and will continue to be routinely recorded. I would be surprised if there isn’t a permanent record of most of what any significant camwhore does. You just need to Bing for ‘Chaturbate’ to see that.

    There are few ‘benefits’ to doing that sort of stuff vs. regular porn- #1: that the audience is likely to be more restricted because the quality’s garbage, and thus you’re less likely to be exposed as having participated in it #2: sad fucks giving them money are convinced that they’re involved, and thus spend more #3: there aren’t Jew producers involved sucking away all the money.

  12. Coward,

    “[she] switched focus to languages tuition (again online, Skype this time) and found that paid better than the camming”

    There must be a market combining the two: busty blondes teach Swedish, that kind of thing.

  13. As with all things, you have to be creative and keep finding new things to do. I never thought that SJW GILF or tax porn would be so popular until that fateful day when Murphy nailed Polly

  14. BiT,

    niche markets demand a premium.

    If there was no demand (at a price) there would be no supply (at that price)

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