On his Pluralistic blog, Cory Doctorow reports that the Zoom teleconferencing system purportedly uses artificial intelligence to detect naked people to block the video. He says "I think that Zoom is probably bullshitting about using machine learning to catch nudity." That makes sense, because how can you detect the content of a video stream if, as Zoom promises, the signal is encrypted end-to-end? Cory also looks at the reasons why pornography always seems to be one of the early use cases in any new technology:
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The thing is, when a new communications technology comes along, the people who have the most incentive to figure out how to use it are the people for whom the existing technology channels are not working.
It's also why everyone else whose communications are disfavored, surveilled or blocked adopt technology.
It's what political radicals, kids, religious extremists, terrorists, conspiracists, and criminals all have in common: using the established communications channels is expensive for them, so it's worth expending the effort to master the new ones.
“Pornhub is donating its March proceeds from Modelhub to support Italy during this unfortunate time," the company said on Twitter:
Model earnings will remain untouched, this is coming straight from Pornhub's share. Italy will also have free access to Pornhub Premium throughout the month. Forza Italia, we love you!
It's kind of wild that a porn site has already done more to fight coronavirus than the US President Who Has Sex With Porn Stars, but here we are.
Pornhub offers free premium service in Italy to ease coronavirus pains [Joe Tacopino / NY Post]
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The Rialto Report is a podcast series and digital library that archives oral histories, images, magazines and books covering the golden age of the adult film industry in New York, from the early-1960s to the mid-1980s. It’s the project of adult film historians Ashley West and April Hall, both of whom served as consultants for HBO’s The Deuce.
Their podcast interviews are in-depth, intimate, and unrivaled, featuring some of the industry’s biggest and most influential names of the era; Seka, George Payne, Candy Samples, Hyapatia Lee, Jerry Butler, Candida Royalle, and Uschi Digard are among other well-and-lesser-known performers and industry stakeholders featured throughout the series.
Certainly, this “golden age” wasn’t exactly golden for all involved. Many performers—both women and men—were exploited, underpaid, mistreated, abused, or worse, and the Rialto Report doesn’t sugarcoat. Their interviews pull no punches and never miss an opportunity, allowing their subjects the space to share their perspectives and tell their own stories—many of them surprising, some of them shocking, all of them intriguing—bringing listeners to the inside of an opaque industry during New York’s epoch of the X-rated.
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PayPal on Thursday says it has halted payment support for models with PornHub, the online adult site, after Paypal says it found that Pornhub made certain payments without PayPal's permission. Read the rest
Back when David Cameron was Prime Minister, he took advice from Patrick Rock (later revealed to be a a trafficker in images depicting the abuse of children) on how to stop children from seeing internet pornography.
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In Grand Rapids, Michigan, an unidentified man, age 40 is suing his parents for $87,000 for dumping his porn collection. Apparently he had been living with his folks following a divorce but recently moved into his own home. When his folks delivered his stuff to the new digs, his 12 boxes of porn magazines and films were nowhere to be found. He called the cops but the Ottawa County prosecutor would not pursue charges.
In an email filed as evidence in the suit, the man's father wrote: "I did you a big favor by getting rid of all this stuff."
According to the Associated Press, the porn has an estimated value of $29,000 but "the man is seeking triple financial damages."
(image: Frank Carroll/CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)
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Firefighters sleep together in the same room, eat and risk their lives together. Getting your ya-yas out for all the world to see together? Well, that’s not a part of the job. According to the Akron Beacon Journal, a pair of firefighters from Akron, Ohio may have burnt down their careers by making a pornographic video on city property.
Lt. Art Dean and Provisional Lt. Deann Eller were hired by the Akron Fire Department on the same day in the fall of 2000. For 18 years, they served their community with diligence and honor—a fact that’s reflected in their work jackets. According to their performance reports, Eller rarely missed a day of work and always displayed a strong work ethic. The same can be said for Dean. Over the years, their careers saw them separated to work at different fire halls in the city. But the time that they spent together allowed for the kindling of a hot personal relationship that may have ended up burning them both.
Opportunities for firefighting puns are few and far between. Let me have this.
After receiving an anonymous tip, City of Akron officials launched an investigation whether the city’s next fiscal year should include a larger budget allotment for cleaning supplies: it’s alleged that the Dean and Eller were filming pornography in the basement of one of the city’s fire halls. Apparently at least one of the videos, which were filmed in a readily identifiable gym located in an Akron fire station, features Eller, working out in the nude. Read the rest
Jiz Lee, Stoya, Nikki Darling, and Asa Akira talk about representation, the marketing of white women vs. women of color in adult movies, and how porn is still a very white industry. And unfortunately you have to click much deeper to find real, respectful diversity.
"What Porn Stars Want You To Know: We Don't All Look the Same" (Iris)
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Adult tube site xHamster released its first comprehensive survey of porn viewership in 2016. According to them the most visited category moved from MILFs to Matures (women in their 40s and 50s). They also found that searches for "Melania" beat out "Donald Trump" and "Hillary Clinton" combined. Read the rest
The Republican party platform is veering to the right as GOP delegates descend on Cleveland to produce the party’s principles document. Several positions about same-sex marriage and scientifically debunked “gay conversion therapy” passed preliminary votes today. Read the rest
Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department documents obtained by Radar Online describe materials depicting "animal torture" and "nude children" that were found during a 2003 search of Michael Jackson's Neverland ranch. The issue of pornography in the Michael Jackson child abuse investigations first arose about a decade ago. The pop music icon died seven years ago, but the ugly secrets of his alleged abuse keep surfacing.
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Oregon Historical Society has posted Pages of Death, a "long-lost" anti-pornography movie in similar vein to the legendary Reefer Madness: "These kids can pick up girly magazines and sex-violence stuff all over town!"
It was released in 1962, much later than most of those propaganda exploitation flicks. If it was already old-fashioned at the time it came out, that fact might not be obvious to present-day viewers.
The blurb follows… Read the rest
Beloved reality TV star and noted child molester Josh Duggar is idolized as a cherished paragon of traditional family values by presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and other social conservatives. The Tea Party darling is now being sued for half a million dollars by a woman he paid to have sex with.
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Shoppers at a Target in Campbell, California on Wednesday were surprised by the sounds of a porn film played over the store's loudspeaker system. Gina Young, shopping with her two 3-year-old children, recorded and posted this recording the event.
“We are actively reviewing the situation with the team to better understand what happened and to help ensure this doesn’t happen again,” a Target spokeswoman told the Los Angeles Times.
Thing is, it isn't the first time. In July, shoppers at a Target in San Luis Obispo, California heard grunts and moans over the loudspeakers. The store was "evacuated" until the audio was silenced, according to report in the San Luis Obispo Tribune.
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PornHub and RedTube's new survey shows that Southern ladies tend to love porn more than other American women, and women are more likely to enjoy porn with lesbians and gay men, regardless of the women's orientation. Read the rest
In 1995 Time magazine published a cover story about online pornography that gave grandstanding politicians an excuse to try to censor the Internet. The politicians would have succeeded, if it weren't for the efforts of civil libertarians, especially Mike Godwin, who was staff counsel at the Electronic Frontier Foundation at the time.
The "Cyberporn" article was written by Philip Elmer-DeWitt, who relied almost exclusively on a research paper that was completely fraudulent. Elmer-DeWitt is now a writer for Fortune, and he wrote an essay about how his "Cyberporn" article nearly ruined him:
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The problem with the story, which I sensed as I was writing it but was too green, too ambitious, too scared of losing my cover slot to address, was the news hook—the “report coming out this week” that I’d pitched to the editors as a Time Magazine exclusive guaranteed to make a splash.
The report—an undergraduate research paper published in a law journal—made a splash all right, but not the kind that reflected well on me or the magazine.
It was immediately attacked from several quarters. By civil liberties groups who saw it as an assault on free speech. By academics who saw through its tissue thin methodology. By sociologists who disputed its most provocative thesis, duly reported in Time, that the market for online porn was driven by a demand for images that couldn’t be found in the average magazine rack: Pedophilia (nude photos of children), hebephilia (youths) and paraphilia—a grab bag of “deviant” material that includes images of bondage, sadomasochism, urination, defecation, and sex acts with animals.
Designer Holly Gramazio makes games you play in person, at events and installations: non-digital works that use physical spaces. But thanks to a very special set of rules—namely, the long list of sex acts suddenly banned in the United Kingdom—Gramazio was drawn to make a hilarious digital game for the first time.
Imagine two or three people go to a hotel room -- a normal, clean room with a computer on the desk, and in that computer is a descriptive, interactive rendering of the room that they are in. It takes just twenty minutes to 'play', and the game is really just a facilitator for people to explore, play and think about the state of being in a hotel room.
These are the experiences Gramazio engineers normally: "One person left three really dirty cotton buds in the bin. There were no cotton buds in the hotel room," she recalled. One person scrawled 'I am going to kill you' on the mirror, and left a trail of lipstick smeared toilet paper throughout the room. Once couple remained in the hotel room for far more than their allotted 20 minutes, one with all their clothes on, one without any.
Experiences that rely on social interactions and physical spaces make good stories, and there are all kinds of even simpler folk games you can play and install in public: Imagine racing sticks down a brook, or counting steps, or choosing strangers in a crowd and betting with your friend on who reaches the crosswalk first. Read the rest