Sexual Violence in Mainstream Porn

New research reveals that 1 in 8 titles shown to first-time viewers of the most popular pornography websites in the UK describe sexual activity that constitutes sexual violence.

This is the key finding from my latest research on pornography with Fiona Vera-Gray and others published in the British Journal of Criminology. We found that content describing criminal acts such as rape, upskirting and incest are regularly being presented on the landing pages of the major pornography platforms.

Our research suggests that mainstream online porn is contributing to a culture in which sexual violence is not being taken seriously, and the harms of sexual violence are minimised. The material we found on the landing pages of the most popular porn websites is creating a climate in which coercion and assault are normalised. This material is a form of cultural harm.

This research raises serious questions about the extent of criminal material freely advertised on mainstream pornography websites, the accountability of porn companies and the efficacy of current regulatory measures.

This research was widely reported including in the Sunday Times.

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