A Brief Overview of Porn and the 20th Century Essay example

A Brief Overview of Porn and the 20th Century Essay example

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Porn and technology:
Pornography has, more than any other type of media, been on the bleeding edge of technology. Pushing new mediums to their limit, usually in the last way they were ever intended to be used (Gross, 2010). We start off the 20th Century with the Half-tone printing process being only two decades old. This was the first process that allowed images to be inexpensively reproduced. Magazines were the leading pornographic medium, and they were only available by mail. Then, with the advent of film, the Stag films were first produced in Germany and Latin America. With the arrival of do it yourself film equipment in the 1940’s anyone could make a film. The problem was it required a lab to make mass copies, and since porn was illegal at the time it was impossible to reproduce them at legitimate labs. Then, in 1971 the VCR hit the market. In the early days of this medium there was more porn titles available than any other. The ability to watch porn in one owns home was a huge selling point. Thus pushing sales of this device even higher. In 1979 only 1% of American household had a VCR, by 1989 it was over half (Hain). However in the mid-80s porn, for the first time, began to suffer due to technology. The movies being put out were bad because good directors refused to use the new medium of VHS (Rodley, 1999). They claimed it looked horrible and degraded their work, and they were right, converting film to VHS degraded picture and sound quality. However, the general public no longer was satisfied with going to a theater to see porn, when they could just stay at home and do so. Camcorders fixed this problem and VHS was the leading format of pornographic movies. In the last 5 years of the 20th century Internet access became a ho...


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... our senses there is porn. Porn drives new technology and takes risks where other types of media don’t. The way we interact with porn has changed more than anything in the 20th century. Becoming more instant, more interactive, with more variety. Porn films went from being socially watched at stag parties, to being experienced in theaters, to being experienced from a TV set with a VCR, to being watched from a streaming Internet connection with endless possibilities. In the world we live in today it’s hard to think that even though pornography was ever-present and growing, it was outlawed for 381 years and has only been legal for 37. Without a doubt the influence of prohibition helped create a porn sub-culture, which is still separate from mainstream society today. The world of porn is ever expanding and always will be, whether we see it in our everyday lives or not.

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