Shane Burrell |Staff Writer|
In a recent interview with comedic actress and activist Rashida Jones, Vice explored the amateur porn industry, and the pornification of pop culture.
Vice reporter Gianna Toboni and Jones sat down to talk about issues conveyed in Jones’ newly produced documentary “Hot Girls Wanted,” which shows the behind the scenes of the porn industry.
Some issues Toboni and Jones discussed varied from girls joining porn to become famous, the pornification of pop-culture and media, and the overall capitalistic expansion of porn.
When the issue of 18-year-old girls joining the porn industry, described as “teeny boppers,” came into conversation and their pursuit into this industry to become famous, fosters social reflections of celebrities in our society now: Kim Kardashian, Paris Hilton, Farah Abraham (Teen Mom), and the very famous Pamela Anderson.
Understanding that these are celebrities that became famous because of their videos spreading across the ever expanding web, reflects on how porn, whether the industry or exposing home-made porn videos, such as the release of Paris Hilton’s video that was released without her concent, her sex tape that brought her fame the peak of fame.
With the case studies, such as Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton, these are people that became famous because of the release of their sex tapes. While possessing vast amounts of money they have been able to make themselves famous within this process.
Another great point brought up by Jones, porn is becoming integrated as a general aspect of Capitalism in the United States.
Capitalism is the idea that an individual is able to use the current economic market to produce goods in which the consumers are able to buy products independent from the knowledge of the state.
Jones commented how the porn industry is a great example of how capitalism is at its peak—buying and selling pornography.
In 2001, Frank Rich reported that the porn industry in the United States had averaged their income at $4.2 billion, but according to NBC News reporter Chris Morris, the porn industry averaged a $10 billion income in 2014.
Jones mentioned, being able to openly express the sexual nature of a human being is a wonderful aspect of life in today’s day and age, and so is showing the maturity of most individuals who consume porn in responsible ways.
However, one has to consider the exposure of these “teeny boppers” and the effects that porn could have on the mental and physiological structures of their brain and body.
Toboni and Jones go into depth of how the teeny boppers are affected in these ways as their bodies are changing from the facial abuse of the actors and the constant stress to perform, these “teeny boppers” are becoming more likely to be depressed in the name of fame.
In “Hot Girls Wanted,” Jones explored many aspects of what it takes to become a “teeny bopper” and the girls that are exposed to the world of amateur porn.
Jones interviewed 18-year-old girls trying to find their way into a world of fame and fortune, using the amateur porn industry as a medium, but later discovers that most of the young women participating have difficulty coming to terms with what they signed up for.
Toboni and Jones also discussed issues of young women not understanding what is happening when they are participating in these acts of sexual violence and how they are translating to their bodies, “when you’re 18, when you’re making choices for yourself your not thinking about the eternal effect of footage online, your not thinking about like the external internal cost, psychological, emotional, physiological physical cost, of having sex for a living your thinking about the fame part of it, so your might be the best candidate to make decision for yourself but your allowed to because your 18,” said Jones.
Jones also talked about pornification within the media, and more specifically pop-culture. The pornification of our media and pop-culture is having a great influence on the younger generation, according to Jones.
Jones explained that concertgoers who buy tickets to Nicki Minaj, Miley Cyrus and Rihanna concerts are 8 and 9-year-old girls.
She correlated the pornification of pop-culture and media are making young girls become more susceptible to highly sexual acts, which has not been proven in cases of aggression or in sexual acts.
In an interview with BuzzFeed News, porn star Jessica Drake was asked, “how do you react to accusations that the availability of online porn has exposed children to explicit images at a much younger age than before, leading them to act in a sexual manner before they fully understand what they’re saying/doing?” as she replied, “I think that the accusations are unfortunately based in truth. I think that everything from easy access to social networking to technological advances and parental neglect is to blame. When I found porn, it was a few VHS tapes stashed underneath my boyfriend’s father’s bed. When kids find porn now, they’re even younger than I was, and there’s a wider variety of porn that they can see on all kinds of devices.”
Although, Jones does make an interesting point on how we now see more and more sexual and/or lascivious activity and behavior in pop-culture today, with reference to Cyrus as well as other main stream pop stars.
It is interesting to see how celebrities present themselves in new, sexual ways either on stage, such as Cyrus’ twerking performance at the 2014 MTV Music Awards show, or recent music videos produced by Rihanna and Nicki Minaj.
There seems to be a correlation between celebrities performing these overtly sexual acts and how other stars and viewers emulate these practices.
Within Toboni’s interview, Jones brought up an interesting thought, questioning whether she was OK with porn or not, regardless, porn is here and it’s here to stay.
Although, it would be very hard to not agree with that statement; the reflection of that statement conveys a feeling of reversion.
Reversion in the sense that these young women present themselves in states of idiocy, almost completely reverting the advances that women have made over the decades.
Despite women who have found success in the industry and made a living to that effect, having “teeny boppers” come into the industry without fully understanding that the industry will play on their body makes these individuals unaware of the full effects of the porn industry.
Not only is it an insult to the women of this generation and the next, but it is also an insult to the men who believe these acts are real, and therefore may believe that women are to be treated as such.
Now, porn is something that is awesome for adult entertainment and enjoyment for those sad lonely nights but to believe that porn is something that is real or believe that this is the reflection of men and women in a society is completely ridiculous.
Jones made a point that porn is good as adult entertainment, but for children to learn from porn and think that it’s a way to make life more exciting or to become rich and famous, is an illusion.
Although Jones puts up a good perspective in the opinion about sex and pornification of today’s pop-culture, there is unfortunately no remedy for solving today’s media and the over enrichment of sex and porn being shown to the most vulnerable of viewers.