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Hard-core porn gets reality check

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Copy of to Lara de Matos NEW

Since its inception in the Fifties, the medium of television has run the full gamut of shows, styles, storylines, personalities and topics.

To the extent that the suited men sitting in their money-spinning ivory towers (having obviously exhausted all other ideas) turned to everyday life and introduced the world to the pervasive iniquity that is the reality genre.

Much as it makes those of us with some semblance of actual creative thought want to vomit the contents of last night’s dinner, actuality programming has proved to be something of a phenomenon. Clearly the wee men understood the full extent of the average person’s taste for vicariousness – or should that be voyeurism?

Allow me to present the latest player in the television-meets-reality game, MakeLoveNotPorn.tv… a platform that features home videos of real couples engaging in the carnal pleasures of the flesh. Yes, you read right.

The brainchild of Briton Cindy Gallop, the TV version (which, technically, remains a website at this stage) is effectively the follow- on to Gallop’s explosive online-talk- turned-e-book of the same title from three years ago.

In it, she tackled what she terms the “creeping ubiquity” of pornography, which sees an increasing number of the younger generation (boys/men in particular) acquiring their sexual knowledge and practices from hardcore material, which, thanks to the development of tech- nological resources, has become more readily available.

Even more alarming is that statistics reveal children as young as 11 are among those progressively accessing these materials. And with many a parent or teacher still not quite comfortable broaching the subject of the birds and the bees with their children, such hard- core pornography has become the average teen and 20-something’s ad hoc sexual education.

Little wonder, then, that we are witnessing an ever more disturbingly sexualised youth.

But just what makes Cindy, a New York-based 52-year-old advertising executive, such an expert on the subject?

Well, experience. As she explained to our intimate discussion group during a stopover in South Africa: “I date younger men, usually in their earlier twenties, and I was finding that hardcore porn had become their de facto idea of sex, making them aggressive and often inconsiderate lovers.”

Her first-hand encounters lit a light bulb and she promptly set out to “separate the myths of hardcore porn behaviour from the reality of healthy – but hot! – sexual relationships… so that young men don’t think porn is the normal way of behaving in the bedroom and their girlfriends don’t have to pretend to like it!”

Evidently, this highly intelligent, Oxford-educated cougar is on to something: Her original MakeLoveNotPorn.com website (mostly text-based – until now) receives some 3 000 daily hits from more than 180 countries, and more than 76 000 people from places as diverse as Afghanistan and China have already signed up for MakeLoveNotPorn.tv, which, for the moment, remains an invitation-only venture.

The tagline for the site stipulates: “We are pro-sex, pro-porn and pro-knowing the difference.” But is this really a project put together out of the goodness of her heart, aimed at ensuring society as a whole adopts a more positive approach to sex?

Or is it little more than a brilliant publicity stunt compiled by someone who spins ideas and concepts for a living – and a very lucrative living at that?

Regardless of your viewpoint, one thing remains certain: sex – in whatever guise – has always, and will always, sell.

LARA DE MATOS

TONIGHT EDITOR

lara.dematos@inl.co.za


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