Tuesday, May 01, 2007

MySpace is PornSpace

An Internet marketing firm recently posted this tempting data on the right, suggesting that social networking sites are poised to beat out pornography sites, click for click, any day now. Looking for porn? Click here.

Many folks are celebrating the news as evidence that the Internet is maturing, no longer just the tool of lonely peoples everywhere trying to get their rocks off in the comfort of their own homes (and, uh, at work, where apparently 70% of adult site visits occur).

As the Economist has noted, it could be that more adult material has simply shifted into the social networking arena, such as in peer-to-peer file sharing networks.

For the record, I am not placing a value against the right of people to consume and view images of their fancy. It's just one of those things that is guaranteed by the first amendment. As Parker Posie once said "Welcome to America, it's the land of milk and honey; don't knock it."

However, I believe I have a right to choose when I want to view these images. And as I am also a MySpace guy, I can tell you that at least one social networking site is actually merging with pornographic values without my consent.

Lately on MySpace, ever since Daddy Murdoch took over, my social networking experience is bookmarked with videoclips of nineteen year old girls covorting around and sucking on cherry lollypops. Sometimes, I get to watch a woman peel off her sweater, and other times it's disappointedly only a stock photo of a blond lady looking over her shoulder and grabbing her own breast. I signed on to MySpace to get back in touch with lost highschool friends and cousins, not to jerk off.

So, is pornography really on the decline? I think no. Instead, mainstream culture is continuing to absorb porncentric values. In today's society, there is no place that is not the market. You don't go to the market on saturdays; you're in the market perpetually. And that seems to be the way the Internet is absorbing pornography. Social networking is sexy.

So, like, is Friendster still alive? Anybody from MySpace wanna jump ship with me? I'll show you mine if you show me yours.

9 comments:

sensual prude said...

deliciously refreshing to hear distaste from the male voices, thanks. I too prefer a little more free choice in my capitalism. Industry may clutch it's breasticles on it's own computer, but I would prefer they ask my permission before doing it all over mine.

The graph is intriguing, it makes me think that the porn product is not so much about sex as it is about consuming. Plus the lines look remarkably like crab pincers coming to get you. That's silly, of course.

They've already got you.

Pindarvus said...

I agree. It's those pincers, man. They totally want YOUR SOUL...

dungan said...

Thanks, ya'll. Nice to hear from the sensual prude too; it's been a while! Another friend suggested that I'm probably affected too much by the constant barrage of breasticles, and she's right. I am affected. Those ads pray on the weak. I'm reasonably well-adjusted but they still pinch at my duped American psyche. I'm thinking about changing my gender on MySpace so I get weight loss ads instead.

z. said...

Huh. I wondered why they were always showing me gay singles ads....

** And a light bulb goes off in my sluggish mind. Of course the ads are based on your profile! Duh! **

Gross.

Anonymous said...

Man, thanks for trying to take one for the team an all, but ads affecting you has nothing to do with you or weakness. People spend whore hoards of money and time devising the best ways to snare you. Your friend is full of shit.

She's also signed in as a girl.

Erstwhile Blonde said...

Hey, Let's not forget the "Search Engines" line at the bottom, slowly creeping upward! What's the role of the search engines in all this meat marketry and self-hype? I'll tell ya what: It's scary to think about the silent enemy...

dungan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dungan said...

whoops, i've got some buttery fingers, had to delete my own comment. how's that for self-censorship?

anyways, this is getting good. thanks anonymous for your support, altho i have to say that my friend is not full of the poop; she's expressing something that often is invisible, that we aren't supposed to notice the barrage. We want to make light of it, and say it's "no big deal." By expressing that, she helped me clarify what's really at risk here: whole swaths of social norms, not just "porn culture." So I honor that. and I love the accidental(?) phrase "whore hoards." Freud would chuckle.

Now, about the role of search engines in the promotion of the meat market.. good question. In general, my understanding is that if something sells, lots of competitors will show up to get in front of the money clicks, and Google search products will ensure the ads are ready when you are. I just googled the phrase "I'm lonely" and came up with three google ads optimized for this phrase - and they're dating sites of course.

So the search engines mirror whatever the advertisers generate. And yeah, we're supposed to feel like we're perpetually unsatisfied, needing something to fill our aches and pains. That's capitalism at its lowest.

As for the proliferation of on-line dating sites that end up linking to - or merging with - pornography sites, that's another matter all together.... search engines don't care, it's all semantical indexing for the Almighty Algorithm. Google isn't a police force, uh, except in China, where it's working with the government to limit free speech.

Imitation Chicken said...

Dreamcrisp, you know what you need on this BLOG? You need some nice, sexy Imitation Chicken money shots. That's right. Animated digital ROYGBIV closeups of soultry stripulets of rivulated chickitosis, blinking and spinning and popping up all over your BLOG. As the South's finest distributor of Imitation Chicken, I can make certain arrangements happen - demographics targeting, user profiling - all the good things that help us generate connectivity. If there's one thing we all love...it's Imitation Chicken. Come and get some, baby. I'm in your dreams.