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Suggestions for pornography research

Suggestions for pornography research

❏ How to minimise the harms associated with pornography exposure / consumption.

How to minimise the harms associated with pornography exposure / consumption. The workings and effectiveness of various strategies, including e.g. self-help groups, media literacy, pornography education, etc. (Michael Flood) 

 

❏ How elements of form and content within pornography alter their effects. E.g., the influence of violent content. The influence of other, problematic aspects of pornography’s content.

(Michael Flood) 

 

❏ How the sexual behaviour (e.g. masturbation) that typically accompanies pornography use influences pornography’s effects

(Michael Flood) 

 

❏ The influence of how users interpret pornography’s content

(Michael Flood) 

 

❏ The relationships between pornography exposure / consumption and children’s problem sexual behaviours (including sexual offending).

(Michael Flood) 

 

❏ How pornography combines with other risk factors to shape the perpetration of sexual violence.

(Michael Flood) 

 

❏ The influence of pornography on girls’ and women’s sexualities and gender

The influence of pornography on girls’ and women’s sexualities and gender, including e.g. their sense of themselves as sexual objects (self-objectification), body image, the kinds of sexualities they take on, and so on. (Michael Flood) 

 

❏ Pornography’s relationship to sexual conditions and injuries:

Pornography’s relationship to sexual conditions and injuries: there are claims of a relationship between pornography’s influence and an increase in painful sexual conditions and sexual injuries among young women. Research should address whether there is evidence for these increases and how pornography is associated. 

 

❏ Pornography’s influence on young people with disabilities and/or cognitive impairments

Pornography’s influence on young people with disabilities and/or cognitive impairments, including its relationship to sexually abusive behaviours amongst this group (both victimisation and perpetration) and the influence of gender etc  

 

❏ Pornography’s influence on young people’s sexual and gender norms, expectations and practices

Pornography’s influence on young people’s sexual and gender norms, expectations and practices, and how factors such as age, gender, peer group relations, family and cultural background, and levels of access and exposure, influence these 

 

 Young people’s attitudes towards pornography:

Young people’s attitudes towards pornography: how they understand it, and the association of various influencing factors - including rates of exposure and access - with their attitudes and understandings 

 

 Young people’s levels of exposure and access:

Young people’s levels of exposure and access: what they’re seeing, how much and how often, in which contexts, with whom, for what purposes. This research - and all research on porn and young people - should take particular note of the impact of gender, but, preferably, also other factors such as age, sexual orientation, family and cultural background (influencing factors) etc


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  • A world where children can grow up without being psychologically harmed by accessing graphic, violent pornography online
  • Prevention of children’s access, given that porn is linked to increased risks of STIs and other harmful physical and relational outcomes
  • Higher standards for ISPs, tech and porn companies to implement technology-related child protection buffers to block harmful pornographic content
  • Adults, including the Australian Government, to exercise due diligence to protect children

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