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Let’s start this off by just getting something out of the way, people watch porn.  A HUGE number of people watch porn, and almost every single guy you know watches porn almost regularly.  Sorry girls if you think differently it’s just because your guy is good at remembering to “clear history” or use “incognito browsing”.  Oh yea, and he’s also good at lying to you about it.  What, men lie to their girlfriends?  Never! Ha.  But seriously, it’s not only men that watch porn, chicks do too.  Like it or not, the porn industry is here to stay; but the one thing I can’t quite figure out is…. how?  images

While watching the almost funny Joseph Gordon-Levitt film “Don Jon” the other night, this girl and I started joking about how many different porn sites there are out there.  Literally, there are thousands and thousands of porn sites and yet it seems like everything is just free.  If you go to one site and they want you to pay, you can literally go to one of 5 other sites that will offer you the same thing for free.

So who’s paying for porn?  I asked like 30-40 of my friends, checked with other writers at Jones and B, and even listened to some different comedy specials and everyone seems to agree that no one pays for porn anymore.  But if no one is paying to watch these videos, then how the hell can they afford to produce them, not to mention produce millions of them?!  Maybe it’s just my B-school background, but don’t you need revenue to off-set costs to run a business??

I started having this conversation with a  few buddies over beers the other day and none of us could really figure out where the money is coming to support all this production.  Are people just doing porn out of the goodness of their heart for the benefit of teenage hornballs everywhere, kinda like community service?  Or maybe there are just so many girls with “daddy issues”, that they are willing to just get it on for spite?  Or maybe, just maybe, it’s all a big Bernie Madoff like Ponzi Scheme, where like one guy is scamming poor people out of their Screen Shot 2014-02-27 at 10.58.56 AMsavings accounts who were hoping to make it big by investing in “Debbi Does Dallas 2020”?  All of these answers seem possible, but the one thing we knew for certain was, not a single person we knew has paid for porn since they were like 15.

According to various articles I’ve found on Forbes, Time Magazine, and random blogs, the porn industry is worth somewhere between $4 – $12 billion annually.  While this does, technically, include things like conventions and sex toys, they still say a big bulk of this revenue comes from magazines and movies.  However, this isn’t the 80’s anymore.  No one is buying Playboy at the 7-11 or renting movies from that cloaked up room in the back of “Video Shack”.  We have the internet and everything is free. I mean, ok, that’s a bit of an exaggeration.  Some people are buying porn, and paying for the XXX channels on their cable boxes.  However, if Playboy is losing millions, how is anyone making money?  Who’s coming up with these annual revenue figures?  Is Arthur Andersen doing their accounting?  

bn3Maybe I’m asking questions I shouldn’t?!  Maybe I’m going to wake up some Porn Producer King Pin in the San Fernando Valley who’s been too focused on the “art” to realize his business is falling apart?  Then again, maybe this is just part of a down cycle in the market.  I mean the US Auto Industry lost billions for years, but they stayed in business.  We may just have to suffer through some “Porn Writer’s Strike” or a “Production Lockout” to get the economies back in line for a bullish second half of the decade.  Who knows, maybe this is a question for Jim Cramer?  All I do know for sure is, from the time I started writing this ridiculous post till now, I still have no clue how the porn industry is making any money.

**One more small side note.  F-U to all the teenagers today.  Do you know how hard it was to get ahold of porn as a teenager in the 90’s?  Trying to find your dad’s stash of nudie magazines, like Bud trying to find Al’s copies of “Bigun’s Magazine” in “Married With Children” or hoping one day you might end up with the porn channel accidentally unscrambling and being afraid to ever change the channel like Joey and Chandler, these are conundrums these kids just can’t relate to.  You guys can just turn on your Xbox or iPad and in 30 seconds you’ve got millions of options.  Just like everything else, these kids these days just get everything handed to them.  Well just remember one thing, getting caught by your parents is just as awkward in 2014 as it was in 2004.***

Joey and Chandler Discover Free Porn

 

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