Monday, September 29, 2008

Pornography: A Driving Force of Technology

While many people may disapprove of pornography, few can say they have never looked at it and nobody can deny the profound impact it has had on technology. In the 16th century pornography helped to popularize the printing press, and in the 19th century it left its mark on photography. Again in the 20th century legend has it that Sony’s unwillingness to work with porn producers led to the demise of the Betamax and the rise of VHS. And again it was porn that drove sales of DVDs. Unlike VHS, DVDs allow users to quickly skip to their favourite scenes and change angles at their will. Do you ever watch pay-per-view? Can you guess who pioneered that? That’s right the porn industry. Today pornography’s impact on the internet is undeniable. Pornography fuels the need for high speed internet connections, as well as video streaming technology. The amount of revenue generated by pornography is absurd. That revenue is then used to develop new and innovative technologies. The porn industry’s massive success on the internet has led other online businesses to look to porn leaders for advice. Danni Ashe, a one time nude model, turned entrepreneur, now serves as a consultant to other companies looking to emulate her e-commerce model. Take a look at this article to find out more about her (yes this link is safe for work). To further illustrate my point, here are some interesting statistics about porn and the internet.
  • Every second - $3,075.64 is being spent on pornography
  • Every second - 28,258 Internet users are viewing pornography
  • Every second - 372 Internet users are typing adult search terms into search engines
  • The pornography industry is larger than the revenues of the top technology companies
    combined: Microsoft, Google, Amazon, eBay, Yahoo!, Apple, Netflix and EarthLink.
So the next time you look at porn (if you do indeed look at porn), think about the many contributions it has made to your daily life. From the printing press to the internet, porn will always be a major player in the development of new technologies. (All statistics taken from

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