Someone you know views internet pornography.
Accurate statistics are almost impossible to find but there is considerable evidence that internet pornography is growing both in volume and in the damage it is doing to men and women. Indirect evidence shows that more and more people are indulging in the viewing of porn and they doing it for longer and longer periods of time.
The Growing Internet Pornography Problem
Careful observations of recent trends demonstrates the problem.
- More and more pornography sites on the web. The increasing number of porn sites is evident by the frequency in which they appear in otherwise innocent internet search results. Search engines like Google and Yahoo are careful to prevent trash sites from popping up in searches but the sheer number seems to be more than the engines can keep up with. Searches for some medical problems or a search to find information about a celebrity are almost certain to generate porn sites included in the listings.
- More and more pornographic spam email. How often do you find odd emails sent to you from people and places you do not know? Many times these emails promote internet sites that specialize in various forms of adultery or pornography. The fact that they are being sent so frequently suggests the technique works; that people actually open and respond to the messages.
- Increases in internet pornography as a component of marital discord. Marital counselors are seeing more and more clients where addictive internet pornography viewing is at least a part of the problem. Men and women steal intimacies from their spouses by consorting with internet porn sites.
- Corporate IT departments verify rising pornography viewing on the job. Businesses are spending more and more time and money preventing the viewing of pornography on their corporate networks. Businessmen are concerned about the vast amount of time spent on such sites and the damage such viewing can bring to their employees.
There can be little question that internet pornography is growing. Some estimates suggest that web-based porn generates more revenue than that from ABC, CBS and NBC combined. It is big business and it is growing.
20 to 33 percent of internet users go online for sexual purposes according to studies done as recently as 2005. (1)Cooper, A., Delmonico, D. & Burg, R., 2000 , (2)Dew, B., 2005 Those same studies, and others, report that up to 17% of users actually fit definitions of sexual addictions. In almost all cases, both users and their partners report a change or chilling in their intimate relationships after the obsession with internet porn began.
The New York Times published an article almost ten years ago that documents the growth of the industry back then. If anything, it is larger today.
Spurred by changes in technology that make pornography easier to order into the home than pizza, and court decisions that offer broad legal protection, the business of selling sexual desire through images has become a $10 billion annual industry in the United States, according to Forrester Research of Cambridge, Mass., and the industry’s own Securities and Exchange Commission filings.
$10 billion in 2000? Can you imagine what that has grown to today?
Even the federal government is not exempt from employees using government computers for porn access. Just a month ago, two United States Senators took the National Science Foundation to task for failing to properly discipline employees who used taxpayer equipment to view porn. “In one case, a senior staff member used his agency computer to view live sexual performances and engage in sex-oriented online “chatting” with performers,” the report alleged.
Internet Pornography Is An Easy Addiction
Few addictive behaviors have grown as quickly as internet pornography. In past decades, one had to search for pornographic magazines in sleazy shops in a bad part of town or behind the counter in some convenience store. Today internet pornography has changed all that.
Internet porn is especially powerful for three key reasons. Some have called these three reasons a “triple engine” effect.
- Internet pornography is cheap or free. Many porn sites offer free images or videos. Often the provider hopes to draw in a user by teasing them with samples. Often porn sites offer subscriptions to their raunchiest material for a few dollars a month to anyone with a credit card, debit card or access to an online payment service.
- Internet pornography is instant gratification. Someone searching for internet porn can find it with a single one word search on Google or Yahoo. Within minutes, a user will be deep into pornography. There is little or no time delay between the decision to engage in viewing porn and the moment it is actually found. Our culture preaches instant gratification in many areas of life and the internet makes it supremely possible.
- Internet pornography is anonymous. Gone are the days of slipping into that sleazy shop and trying to buy a video or magazine without being seen by someone. Now one can surf the waves of internet porn with hardly a trace.
These three components, free, instant and anonymous, make internet porn a sure bet to attract and hold many people. In the coming days, we will publish daily articles on pornography. Be sure and follow along. You will learn much and hopefully prevent problems in your own life from this insidious temptation.
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