5/30/2004

ABCNEWS.com : Porn Profits: Corporate America's Secret

ABCNEWS.com : Porn Profits: Corporate America's Secret: "American Porn
Corporate America Is Profiting From Porn -- Quietly"

I was half-asleep when I watched this story on PrimeTime Thursday, so I didn't immediate grasp the point of the story. Here are some excerpts from the print article:

"Companies like General Motors, AOL Time Warner and Marriott earn revenue by piping adult movies into Americans' homes and hotel rooms, but you won't see anything about it in their company reports.

And you won't hear them talking about the production companies that actually make the films — or the performers the producers hire, men and women as young as 18, for sex that is often unprotected.

"We have an industry that is making billions of dollars a year, is spreading to cable television and to the Internet, and yet their employees are considered to be throwaway people," said former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop."

"It is hard to estimate how much money these corporations derive from porn because they do not publicize it in their portfolios or anywhere else. Their financial statements do not mention profits from adult movies. However, one industry analyst estimated that the combination of cable and satellite outlets makes about $1 billion a year from the adult-movie market."

"A spokesman for DirecTV said he was not permitted to talk about the company's profits from adult movies. Representatives of Comcast, Hilton and Marriott refused to talk on the record about the issue. "

The gist of the story hit me on Friday....that PrimeTime was blaming big corporations for the women being in porn and that they, the corporations, were making huge profits while excluding the performers from the benefits. The evil corporations also hide their profits from porn from their balance sheets. To summarize ABC's stance, it's the bourgeoisie exploiting the proletariat.

Exploitation by the corporations named in the story? Hardly. The companies delivering the content are far down the chain. The producers and directors likely do exploit their performers, but that was never really mentioned n the story. It is true that companies make huge profits and the "stars" only make a few grand per scene (unless they're with a huge studio like VCA where they get 6 figure salaries). The entire thing that stood out in retrospect, was the way the story was slanted. Evil corporations making big money at the expense of young female porn stars (or as a C. Everett Koop stated "throwaway people"). Typical of big media, they don't tell the entire story. They only tell the part of the story that suits their slant. Some questions that went unasked and unanswered are the following:

1. The porn star (Belladonna) interview for the piece stated that she wanted out...and that she would get out, but 2 years later is still in the business because more than anything else she's addicted to the relatively easy money. She also stated that when she started, she was "talked into" doing scenes. Where's her culpability in this? For that matter, if the working conditions are so bad (they work without condoms, benefits/health care, and most performers don't make big money), why don't the performers either get out of the business or strike?

2. Nobody analyzed the reason that pornography is so large in America. Why? Moral decline? The possibility that our society is repressed sexually (though I disagree with that statement)? Ease of access? Who knows, I'm sure there's a million theories, but ABC didn't mention one.

3. Why young women (18 year-olds) are drawn to porn to begin with. Easy money? Psychological issues (many were molested/raped as children)? Why are girls of high-school age allowed in the business to begin with?

The entire thing that irritated me about the story was that what happens to young women when they enter porn (which is a good story) was only given as a contrast to point out that evil corporations are making money at their expense.

Where's personal responsibility in this story? Oh, that's right...there's no such thing as personal responsibility...people are always victims. Then again, I guess I can understand where it's a corporation's fault that a porn actress would allow herself to be double-penetrated while being smacked in the face. They'll explain that next time I'm sure.

7 Comments:

Blogger eskadoni said...

i think you're really mad that they weren't telling the story you wanted them to. the story was about corporate america's involvement in the porn indusrty. was it a srear job? yeah. should they have blamed corporate america for the porn industry's flaws? no. but the story was about the connection between corporate america and porn. liberal garbage? yes.

i agree that the story on the porn star was crap. you make your own life choices. porn was her choice.

i guess i should get my liberal news from them!

May 30, 2004 at 2:45 PM  
Blogger eskadoni said...

off topic: what libertarian candidate do you support?

May 30, 2004 at 2:47 PM  
Blogger eskadoni said...

another quick off-topic comment: are you the only person watching abc now? i really can't remember the last time i watched it at all.

May 30, 2004 at 3:18 PM  
Blogger Liberal_Slayer said...

Well, I was watching it by mere fluke...flipping channels...so I decided to give it a whirl. I should have known. I normally don't watch any of the networks...I spend most of my TV time watching TLC, History Channel, etc. If I want news, it's Fox News.

here was a better story on the topic...one with substance...but ABC chose not to go that route.

May 30, 2004 at 3:42 PM  
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