Would you put your sex life on the internet? Introducing the rise of ‘real couple porn’…

Alix Fox reports on a new brand of erotica made by the people, for the people

Running parallel to the selfie phenomenon has been the rise of the new porn movement. Unlike the homogeneous, usually white, heterosexual, male-orientated and often sexist arena of mainstream porn, the new wave is as nuanced and diverse as the users creating it. These aren’t professional pornographers or photographers, but people who long to see sex that feels relatable to their race, sex, gender or orientation – and their relationships. Central to the rise of this porn movement is Tumblr, the image-based microblogging platform where users can curate and share content. It’s free, anonymous and permissive, and while some stick to sharing conventional pornography, others are creating their own original content – with couple’s erotica being the latest trend.

For many, the rise in ‘real couple porn’ is a reaction to the outdated, one-dimensional mainstream industry and there’s a feminist agenda at play. ‘[In mainstream porn] where are the women’s orgasms? Where is her pleasure other than being of use to his?’ asks relationship and sex therapist, Beth Wallace*. ‘Women want to see “real” people and “real” sex reflected. 
I want to know that those in the porn I’m watching are being fairly treated.’

One in three women watch porn at least once a week and 64 per cent of female viewers are aged 18-34**, so there’s a lot of young women struggling to find something for them. ‘I find the “porny-ness” of the women [in mainstream porn] really unsexy; the fakeness of the tits, the hair, and the orgasms,’ says Emmy, 27. ‘I prefer porn that I can identify with, at least a little bit.’

A recent survey by Ann Summers revealed 96 per cent of women have watched porn 
with their partner and 40 per cent have made a DIY sex tape. ‘I’ve shared x-rated videos of myself online,’ says Ella, 38. ‘I find the thought of anonymous people around the world getting off to the sight of me really hot. 
The fact it’s considered taboo to show yourself having sex enhances the thrill for me. The 
high you get from watching your viewer count rise is similar to the rush you get from retweets or Facebook likes.’

For introverts, you don’t have to create your own erotica to benefit from this new wave of diverse porn. ‘Tumblr has given people a way to express themselves sexually,’ says Elle Chase, sex educator and owner of Lady Cheeky, an award-winning, 146k-strong Tumblr account. ‘It’s taking an idea around sex that’s hard to articulate and making a collage of pictures that you’ve reblogged or created, and saying, “This is my sexual aesthetic.”’ Like a Pinterest-style board for porn, curated by you.

The recent rise of erotic podcasts – predominantly made by women, for women 
– indicates
a move away from subjective, visual porn towards something more personalised. The People Of Kink, Hot Sex Stories and The Kiss Me Quick’s Erotica by Rose Caraway offer an audio alternative that allows more room for fantasy. Elsewhere, Guys We Fucked and New York magazine’s Sex Lives cater to an ever-growing curiosity of other people’s sex lives.

Sharing details of your sex life may feel exciting, but you must consider the consequences, warns Chase. ‘Do not make yourself recognisable unless you want to be,’ she says. ‘That means your face, tattoos, moles or any obvious bedroom details should be Photoshopped out.’ For more cautious couples, a shared erotic Tumblr, where you each have a password and access to upload images, is an option. ‘It’s an upgrade from sexting and great for making suggestions of new things to try,’ says Chase. ‘It opens doors to deeper intimacy with each other.’

*Bethwallace.org. **According to Pornhub

 

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