Thursday, May 18, 2006

God bless 'em: Women still dislike porn



Egalitarians claim that if men and women ever did have any differences in sexual interest, it was only the result of socialization. As men and women enjoy the same environments, their sexual urges will converge, we are told. Well, American men and women's experiences have converged in the last three decades, so have women caught up with men in their interest in porn? Not hardly. The graph above shows that the share of women who have watched a x-rated movie did not change from 1973 to 2004. They are no more interested in it now than 33 years ago. Based on this, I predict that women will never enjoy this form of entertainment as much a men. Never. Why? Because we're different.

7 comments:

Compost Books said...

I have mentioned on this site that several years back, I had access to a major hotel chain's market research data on their pay per view movies. While I no longer have access to this data, I do recall some tidbits of information about the data:
1) The sample size of hotel renters was overwhelmingly middle-aged white male business travellers. A very large number, as I recall 60-some percent, purchased pay per view porn, and usually paid that portion of their bill in cash.
2) The most popular pay per view titles seemed to suggest ethnic focuses, such as "Urban Love" and "Eastern Love;" or specific perversions; "Group Scene" etc. (note I don't remember the titles except they were ludicrous; we had some fun trying to figure out the content of the movies from their titles though).
3) A significant portion of the pay per viewees purchased access to both hetero and homo titles (say, 20%).
4) Female porn pay per view use was almost nonexistent, under 5%, I think maybe 1 or 2 percent, so low that my contact at the hotel chain assumed that most of those were accidental rentals, who were too embarassed to call the front desk to clear it up.
5) Female pay per viewers DID enjoy racy pay per view R-rated fare - American Pie was a particular female favorite in the data I saw.

Anyway, I think women like DEPICTIONS of sex in movies, but they don't like actual sex in their movies. It really is a guy thing.

What would be the reason for this? Is voyeurism an innate part of male sexuality?

Jason Malloy said...

1) It's pretty amazing that nearly 90% of men watch X-rated movies. I would think social, marital, religious, and ideological norms would all provide powerful disincentives. I would think that denial, shame, and paranoia would prompt many to lie, even in private survey. I would think older, conservative men with less libido would push the numbers much further down. Note that only 1 in 4 web users were shown to visit pornographic sites, and this is on a unique, almost totally private, technology, and with demographics heavily biased toward the most libidinous demographic: the young and the male. (granted for a 1 month period instead of 12)

2) It's pretty amazing that the numbers haven't changed much in 30 years, with no notable spikes tracking the advent of the VCR and the Internet - technologies that made this activity much more private. Were 80% of men going to pornographic movie theatres in the 1970s?

3) It's pretty amazing that men and women's norms oscillate together so reliably like that across the entire time series. Why in the world would men lose interest in this activity more often at the same time, and in equal proportion to, the gain in women's interest?

Am I missing something, because I find all of this very hard to believe.

dana said...

women like to READ pornography, not WATCH it--track the numbers of women who read "romance" novels, and you'll find your female "porn" stats

Ron Guhname said...

Jason: Sorry for the lack of clarity on the graph. The top line is the percent of women who did not watch a X-rated movie in the past year.

For men, the percentages who said yes ran in the 20s during the 1970s and jumped into the 30s by 1983 where they have basically stayed since. Like you, I suspect that some men lie about it.

Jason Malloy said...

Ok, ok, I was reading blue line men, red line women, which is kind of disturbing. Now it makes a lot more sense. And in fact that agrees pretty well with the Nielsen data showing about 25% of Net users.

Vol-in-Law said...

Women like words (books), men like pictures. Vive la difference.

Anonymous said...

piracy affects porn but it's still winner during the crunch


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