How young women are suckered into making porn


#1

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#2

So the story, basically, is that small town America is so hatefully monstrous that being an abused sex worker (or more commonly a meth addict) is preferable to having to engage with it. That certainly matches my personal experience.

Surely this could all be fixed with more family values and country songs.


#3

This does come across as a little one-sided, however. I know quite a few women in the sex business, including one that does work along the lines of “amateur” stuff, as well as two friends in the “cam girl” business, and one who would be considered an actual “porn star” – and their experiences are not at all like this. They are all nerdy women from normal families, in fact. Most of them grew up in the city, not a small town, too.

They do not feel as if they were “suckered” into anything.

This seems more like a symptom of a much larger problem that cause people to have very little choices to begin with, and also which prevents those who are in the sex industry from being able to be treated respectfully and with agency in their line of work. There are also a lot of disadvantaged people who are abused in other forms of work not having to do with sex.

that technology and communications are the medium that helps young people make dreadful mistakes.

Not all young female sex workers think they are making a “dreadful mistake”. Perhaps if sex work wasn’t as stigmatized to begin with, it WOULD NOT be considered a mistake. Perhaps if we treated sex workers, women, POC, poor people, and other marginalized groups as full human beings with agency, the choice to be a sex worker would be less fraught. Women (and men!) could make a livable wage while working in a safe environment. Rather than allowed to be abused, and then told the reason they were abused is because they are a sex worker.


#4

And to comment on this quote again… this comes off like a scare-tactic. “BEWARE! Our young, impressionable female children are at risk! Technology will cause them to make terrible mistakes! They will have sex! Possibly even make porn! And they will be ruined! And technology is to blame for sullying our young women and girls!”

Yeah, no. It’s not technology that creates the culture of abuse within the sex industry…

And what about all the young men in the sex industry? They do exist! It’s not just women who are taken advantage of and abused.


#5

Huh – I wonder if there’s a relationship between whether or not a sex worker is “well-adjusted” and where they grew up.

It’s almost impossible to even have conversations about subjects like this because of female sex stigmatization. People from all across the political and cultural spectrum seem to be hamstrung by this. Many people I think try to rationalize backwards from “sex workers are frequently exploited” to “sex work is bad”. I believe that it all comes from the same place, though: “Women who have sex with people who are not me are impure, and once a woman is impure she cannot be married off, and once she cannot be married off she is worthless.” This attitude is deeply ingrained in our culture and all of our major religions, and I think subconsciously affects everyone. The “sex with people who are not me” thing is a biological layer on top of that for heterosexual men: I know it’s deeply rooted in my psyche, and but for my rigorously introspective upbringing it would rule all of my conclusions about sex.


#6

Of course, we could make college free for all of our children… I imagine that would cut down on this ‘tragedy’


#7

It’s a recurring theme. Pushing people into a semi-legal un-or-underregulated market creates its own set of problems, which are then used to stigmatise the people in those situations further.We should be pushing towards full legal regulation to solve these problems, but the status quo suits a strange coalition of the morally outraged and the profiteers.


#8

Given how many people prey on, take advantage of, and out right abuse women in general (doubly so if actually in the sex trade), don’t you think that is a prudent warning?

I am glad everyone you know is happy and well adjusted and enjoys their job. But we warn people about coercion for sex in the dating world. Certainly in the sex trade there is coercion to do things that perhaps they don’t fully want to do at the time, and later regret or wouldn’t do again.


#9

I can’t watch porn. Because even when I know it’s feminist porn, and even when I know that the best way to support performers is to support better porn, I can’t stop thinking about abuse in porn.

But ultimately, our social structure is based on arbitrary standards about who is worthy or unworthy, and on exploitation…


#10

THIS. People being treated like commodities, milked for as much profit as possible and then dumped like worthless junk is happening all over the private sector. Sex workers make a mistake as much as someone applying to Walmart or McDonald’s. The only reason it’s worse for their future and safety is because society shames and isolates them over it. It seems there is no shame in being fucked for money unless one is literally being fucked for money. Of course, it’s going to take a mighty long time to change that outlook. But this problem is part of the wider problem that workers/employees in general have less and less value, rights and leverage. Who can really blame young women for trying to be marketable and get a piece of the pie any way they can when options are so meager or out of reach? It’s not naiveté, it’s despair.


#11

Yes, of course. But, I AM from small town America. small town ARIZONA, in fact. Meth is a huge problem where I’m from. Such a problem, in fact, that a few cousins, my identical twin sister, younger sister, and mother all have had issues with it, to varying degrees, up to and including rehab and suicide attempts (no worries, no one is on meth anymore in my immediate family…currently!).

Some of them have been in and out of jail, most recently one of my cousins (who also no longer has custody of her children).

None of them got into sex work. In fact, I don’t know any one form my small town who is in sex work, although I wouldn’t be surprised if I just don’t know about a few. But I know way more sex workers from my time living in Phoenix, which is a huge city.

Anyway. Yeah. Meth in small town America? That’s a subject I understand very, very well.

I also agree with the rest of your comment, so no real argument, just that … yeah. Small town meth problem is a problem. But it doesn’t just result in abused sex workers. That seems to be missing the point entirely.

Small town America has a lot of problems, and abused sex workers is just one symptom of it. But it’s hardly scratching the surface.


#12

It would have advantages for sure, but the job market should also be altered to value workers’ contributions and livelihoods instead of cannibalizing them for profit. As it stands, even college graduates have trouble finding jobs that pay a comfortable living wage (unless they’re engineers).


#13

It saddens me that I have this in common with you. :confused:

I honestly think some of my family members will never recover. I am heartened to hear yours did.


#14

“Prudent warning” or fucking obvious? Do you think young women are just somehow completely naive and unknowing and have no idea what sex work is actually about…? Because you’d be wrong. Also, again, this isn’t something that affects only young women. Boys and young men are completely left out of the discussion when it comes to sex work (as usual). And I say that to emphasize the fact that this has more to do with just “small town america = girls make bad decisions and get into sex work and then they are abused because they got into sex work.”


#15

Especially after trying to pay off student loans.


#16

You seem to assume that society should benefit everyone.

I think our ruling class would prefer that it benefit them, with increased returns on investment, reduced labor costs, and a selection of attractive and legally-vulnerable concubines.


#17

I am a soshulist.


#18

While not completely naive, I imagine there is much they don’t know until they experience it.

Good point that young men surely face similar issues.


#19

Guess which thread I am not even gonna try and get into a substantive debate in?

Guess.

I dare you, guess.

I won’t derail, I promise. But guess what I’m not touching with a 20 foot pole.


#20

Obviously women should not be lied to or manipulated and we should speak out against that. But giving a stern talking to and claiming it’s just a “prudent warning” without actually trying to address the stigmatization of sex work a well as addressing the other reasons why young women (and men) are abused within the sex industry is not at all helpful.

It’s a little too close to “if you do or don’t do this or that or refrain from going here or there, then you will lower your chances of getting raped!” for comfort. It is putting the focus on the women and their so-called “mistakes” or choices, rather than focusing on the actual problem and addressing the actual abuse that’s taking place.

It is not new information that marginalized young women and men are more likely to enter the sex business, and to be taken advantage of there, and to become addicted to drugs (whether in the sex business or not). This is not a new discussion. This is already known. This is more hand-wringing about how our young women are making terrible mistakes, but there is a distinct lack of solutions discussed.

Technology for sure makes certain forms of abuse easier, but it’s still not the fault of technology. It’s the fault of the abusers using the technology as a means to abuse.