From the statistics, it seems that a lot of men regularly look at porn (and quite a few women as well, of course). That means that many of us have been turned on by images of women being objectified, disrespected, and/or abused; because, if you’ve looked at any porn sites recently, you’ll know that they’re not the place to look for examples of consensual female-friendly sexuality, non-violence or gender-equality.
We are a group of men from England who are organising engage, an international pro-feminist online conference, for the first time in 2021. The conference seeks to engage men in activism and discussions surrounding masculinity, feminism and the patriarchy. It takes place over November 19-21.
There are at least four forms of evidence we can use to test if pornography increases the likelihood of sexual violence:
Pornography has become the default sex educator for large numbers of young people. Viewing pornography is routine, especially among boys and young men, as two Australian studies document. Children and young people are encountering pornography in greater numbers, at younger ages, and with a wider variety of content.
2. Most users of pornography are heterosexual men. 3. Pornography’s content often is sexist and violent. 5. Pornography has undeniable effects on the sexual lives of men and women, boys and girls. 6. Pornography’s effects are complex. 7. Existing efforts to shift men’s porn use are limited. 9. We must appeal to and engage boys and men. 10. There are dilemmas here.
White Ribbon New Zealand's 2016 campaign focused on giving fathers in New Zealand the skills and confidence to talk about respectful relationships, including respectful sexual relationships, with their sons. One significant influence on boys' and young men's sexualities is pornography, and White Ribbon NZ addressed this in their campaign materials.
In this short paper, I will outline a perspective on anti-pornography activism, provide a brief overview of tactics, and offer a few comments about tactics and actions. For the purposes of this paper, I will focus on pornography. But as has been discussed throughout this conference, the distinctions between pornography, prostitution, and sex trafficking are shallow and tenuous. There is more alike between these issues than there is different.
I hate pornography. I hate what pornography does to women, what it does to men, what it says to men to do to women and other men.
Pornography has a profound influence among men and boys.
Most everyday users of pornography are heterosexual males. Looking at, and masturbating to, pornography is the routine practice of large numbers of men. And most of the commercial pornographic industry caters to heterosexual men.