ArticlePDF Available

Abstract

Pornography has been identified as playing an increasingly important role in the sexual socialization of men. However, relatively little attention has been paid to men’s perceptions of their own pornography consumption. This study investigated self-perceived effects of pornography consumption among an online sample of heterosexual men (N = 312). The study used a short form version of the Pornography Consumption Effects Scale (PCES–SF). The PCES–SF measures both self-perceived positive and negative effects of pornography consumption across the domains of sex life, attitudes toward sex, life in general, perceptions and attitudes toward the opposite gender, and sexual knowledge. Level of pornography use (measured in terms of frequency of use and average length of use) was positively predictive of both self-perceived positive and negative effects of pornography consumption. Those who indicated that they had never been regular users of pornography reported more negative effects than regular users. Older participants reported fewer negative effects than younger participants, even after controlling for level of pornography use. However, the relationship between age and perceived positive effects was nonsignificant. Religiosity was positively predictive of perceived negative effects, but unrelated to actual level of use. Overall, the sample perceived pornography to have a significantly greater positive than negative effect on their lives. This research is part of a growing body of literature that suggests that most men consider pornography to have a positive impact on their sexual self-schema and lives more generally.
... Similarly, using a diverse sample of 1,274 Swedish and Norwegian young adults, Kvalem et al. (2014) found that young male adults perceived a positive, albeit modest, influence of pornography use on sexual self-esteem. Using a sample of heterosexual men, Miller et al. (2018) also found greater positive self-assessed effects of pornography use than negative. Finally, compared to self-assessed negative effects of pornography use, positive effects were more prevalent in samples of Indonesian (Wijaya Mulya & Hald, 2014) and Canadian (Hesse & Pedersen, 2017) university students, and in a large-scale sample of Australian adults (McKee, 2007;Rissel et al., 2017). ...
... This may be due to a limited age range in other studies because these studies sampled emerging and/or young adults. The exception was a study carried out in a sample of heterosexual men (Miller et al., 2018), that found a weak negative association between age and self-assessed negative effects of pornography use. ...
... More frequent pornography use was associated with increased odds of reported positive, as well as mixed or negative self-assessed effects of pornography use-compared to no effect. These findings are concordant with previous studies (Hald & Malamuth, 2008;Miller et al., 2018;Wijaya Mulya & Hald, 2014). The latter finding is not surprising, considering that a number of negative effects of pornography use have been explored in the literature (Grubbs, Perry, et al., 2019). ...
Article
Objectives: The study explored characteristics associated with the self-assessed effects of pornography use on one’s personal sex life. Methods: Data were collected in a probability-based sample of Norwegian adults (n = 4,160). Results: Most participants (41.3%) did not believe that pornography affected their sex life. More participants reported positive (33.2%) than mixed/negative (25.5%) effects of pornography use. Sociodemographic and sexual characteristics that predicted these self-assessments were examined. Among participants in a steady relationship, emotional intimacy and relationship satisfaction were unrelated to the self-assessed effects. Conclusions: The current study findings add to scant literature about the self-assessed effects of pornography usage.
... One aspect of sexual behaviour that has been less well explored is that of problematic Internet pornography (PIP) use, despite IP viewing being both widespread and increasingly normative (Brown et al., 2017;Carroll et al., 2008;Häggström-Nordin et al., 2005;Hald, 2006;Lim et al., 2017). In studies of self-perceived effects of pornography consumption, both men and women have reported small to moderate positive effects and few, if any negative effects (Hald & Malamuth, 2008;McKee, 2008;Miller et al., 2018). However, the tendency to minimise any negative effects from IP, or to believe that others are more vulnerable to its effects, is also not uncommon (Lee & Tamborini, 2005;Lo & Wei, 2002). ...
... However, in a similar sample of Polish young adults, Dwulit and Rzymski (2019) found no difference between males and females in the mean age of initial exposure to IP and no difference in the gender of those indicating daily use of IP. Single males exposed to IP at an early age have, however, been found to be most at risk of developing PIP viewing (Harper & Hodgins, 2016), and viewers exposed to IP at a younger age report more negative consequences than viewers exposed later in life (Miller et al., 2018). In this context, both age of initial exposure to IP and gender will be considered in this study for their association with PIP viewing. ...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction Characterised by both exploration and engagement in risky behaviours, late adolescence and emerging adulthood are periods of particular vulnerability to dysregulated behaviours. One such behaviour less well explored is that of problematic Internet pornography (IP) viewing, despite viewing explicit online material becoming increasingly pervasive and normative. Method In 2020, 385 (270 females, 110 males) Australian undergraduate students (aged 17–25 years) completed an online survey assessing exposure to IP, affective and cognitive responses to IP, IP-related sexual beliefs, self-assessed problematic IP viewing and key psychological vulnerability factors. Correlational and regression analyses were utilised to assess the relationships between variables. Results Most male (57.3%) and female (33.7%) respondents recalled their first exposure to IP as occurring between 12 and 14 years; however, 28.2% of males and 23.7% females recalled their exposure as occurring between 9 and 11 years, and a small proportion were exposed even earlier. Higher IP viewing frequency, positive affective responses to IP at current exposure, elevated sexual impulsivity and the endorsement of IP-related sexual beliefs were all found to be associated with self-assessed problematic IP viewing. Conclusions Findings suggest that both person and situational factors may contribute to problematic IP viewing patterns. IP viewing may also be shaping the sexual beliefs and behaviours of some viewers. Policy Implications There is little consensus on the factors that may lead IP viewing to become problematic, which limits the ability of clinicians to identify more susceptible individuals. These findings suggest that in addition to dysregulation factors such as sexual impulsivity, dissociation and depression, affective responses to IP and IP-related beliefs may also be important to consider when assessing for whom IP viewing may become problematic.
... In more than a decade since the publication of the Hald and Malamuth study, limited additional information about how men and women evaluate their pornography use has been made available, despite an increase in the availability of free online pornography and mainstream acceptance of pornography (Lykke & Cohen, 2015). Three studies that used full or a brief version of the Pornography Consumption Effects Scale, originally developed by Hald, consistently found that selfpercieved positive effects were more prevalent than negative effects in convenience samples of men who have sex with men (Hald et al., 2013), heterosexual men (Miller et al., 2018), as well as Canadian (Hesse & Pedersen, 2017) and Indonesian university students (Wijaya Mulya & Hald, 2014). In another earlier study that was carried out in a large-scale nonprobability-based sample of Australians to explore selfperceived effects on pornography use on personal attitudes toward sexuality, 35% of participants reported no impact, 59% of participants reported positive impact and only 7% negative impact of pornography use (Mckee, 2007). ...
... Overall, what can be concluded about self-perceived effects of pornography use on sex life and as the role of MI as the basis of existing cross-cultural evidence? Across post-industrial Western societies, there is consistent quantitative and qualitative evidence that most people perceive their pornography use as having no negative effects on personal sex life (Hald & Malamuth, 2008;Miller et al., 2018;Löfgren-Mårtenson & Månsson, 2010;McKee, 2007). What is less clear is whether they believe that their pornography use has no effect or a positive effect. ...
Article
Although online pornography use appears to be a mainstream activity, there is little information, particularly outside of the USA, about how consumers perceive its impact on their sexuality. Considering increasing concerns about pornography use, this lack of evidence has sociocultural and clinical ramifications - especially because the recently proposed Moral Incongruence model (MI) suggests that some individuals may see their pornography use as problematic independently of the frequency of use. Using data from 4,177 adults from the 2018-2019 national probability-based German Health and Sexuality Survey, we explored self-perceived impact of pornography use on personal sex life and the role of MI. Most participants (61.7%) reported no impact of pornography. Women were characterized by significantly higher odds of reporting positive relative to no impact, while men had higher odds of reporting mixed/negative compared to no impact. Participants in both the positive and the mixed impact group reported a significantly higher frequency of pornography use than participants in the no impact group. In line with the MI model, we observed a significant relationship between participants' religious upbringing and self-perceived negative (relative to mixed) impact of pornography use. Social relevance and clinical implications of the findings are discussed.
... Despite these harmful effects, other studies have suggested some potential positive gains of IPU in that it enhances sexual knowledge [31,32], openness [33], and yields more significant positive effects in men's lives [34]. The act of watching porn is also categorised as an emotional coping mechanism (e.g., stress relief and relaxation) [35]. ...
Article
Past studies have demonstrated a link between pornography use and addiction to pornography, the underlying mechanism of the association is still unclear. This study intended to examine the mediating role of perceived realism of pornography in the association between pornography use and addiction among emerging adults in Malaysia. This study recruited 222 self-identified pornography users (M age = 21.05; SD Age = 1.68; 75.1% male respondents) via the purposive sampling method. The correlation results indicated positive associations among pornography use, addiction to pornography, and perceived realism of pornography. Further, the perceived realism of pornography significantly mediated the association between pornography use and addiction to pornography after controlling for gender. Thus, this study has provided a fundamental understanding on the perceived realism role of pornography in explaining the association between its use and addiction. Although it is unlikely to stop illegal pornography use, the results pointed out a need to guide emerging adults in pornography use via media literacy programmes.
... Despite these harmful effects, other studies have suggested some potential positive gains of IPU in that it enhances sexual knowledge [31,32], openness [33], and yields more significant positive effects in men's lives [34]. The act of watching porn is also categorised as an emotional coping mechanism (e.g., stress relief and relaxation) [35]. ...
Article
Full-text available
Internet pornography use (IPU) refers to Internet-based sexually explicit materials that are ultimately used to elicit sexual feelings or thoughts. The accessibility of Internet pornography could lead to excessive exposure to pornographic messages, posing a risk to heavy users’ psychological health. This paper offers a preliminary understanding of the relationship between Internet pornography use and psychological distress among emerging adults and the moderating role of gender in the association. This cross-sectional study has taken a purposive sampling approach to recruit 144 emerging adult pornography users via the online survey method. The results indicated that males reported having more problematic Internet pornography use, and there were no gender differences in psychological distress. Meanwhile, gender is a significant moderator between Internet pornography use and psychological distress. The females were found to be more psychologically affected by their problematic Internet pornography use than the males. Overall, this study has provided a novel finding of the moderating role of gender in problematic Internet pornography use and psychological distress in the Malaysian context. This study also calls for a gender-focused sexual health programme for Malaysian emerging adults. Furthermore, the scores of problematic IPU in this study raise a concern over the effectiveness of current sex education in Malaysia. The scores may highlight the need to provide education targeting Internet pornography use.
... For these users, the degree to which use is associated with adverse intra-and interpersonal outcomes depends, in part, on the degree to which they self-identify as being addicted to pornography (Grubbs et al., 2015a(Grubbs et al., , 2015b(Grubbs et al., , 2015cMiller et al., 2018;Sniewski et al., 2018). This suggests that a dispositional tendency to pathologize one's pornography use, leading to self-identification as an "addict" (Grubbs et al., 2015b;Grubbs et al., 2017;Grubbs et al., 2020a;Volk et al., 2016), is one source of the aforementioned psychological distress (Guidry et al., 2020;Volk et al., 2019). ...
Article
Full-text available
Researchers focused on the model of pornography problems due to moral incongruence (PPMI) have suggested that perceptions of addiction, stemming from a misalignment between one's moral values and online sexual behavior, may lead to heightened sexual shame. Even so, it has been suggested that the associations found in previous models of PPMI may have been inflated by the inclusion of the emotional distress subscale in the widely used Cyber Pornography Use Inventory (CPUI-9), leading many to use the abridged 4-item version (i.e., the CPUI-4), which excludes emotional distress. Prior models assessing sexual shame have yet to fully address this potential methodological limitation. Considering advances in the conceptualization of PPMI and recommendations concerning best practices, a sample of participants (N = 296) that reported using pornography in the last six months was utilized to compare findings from two moderated mediation models. The first model assessed the differential strength of effects when the subscales of the CPUI-9 were assessed as separate mediators of the associations between moral incongruence and sexual shame, while the second model examined whether such associations persisted when using the recommended CPUI-4. Model results provide further justification for previous findings, indicating that associations between constructs were not the sole result of emotional distress, which supports the utility of the CPUI-4 in models that include sexual shame. Findings provide added support for sexual shame as a unique outcome among those who, due to moral incongruence, perceive that they are addicted to Internet pornography.
... For instance, in the US, about 81.5% of men and 67.2% of women reported some pornography use in the last year (Willoughby & Leonhardt, 2020). In a study that included men mainly from three countries-Australia (41.7%), the US (26.9%) and Singapore (17.6%)-most of them (94.2%) reported pornography use in the preceding six months (Miller et al., 2017). In a study by Johnson et al. (2019), about 83% of adult women in the US reported to have watched pornography. ...
Article
Full-text available
Chinese people’s pornography use is increasing and condomless sex is prevalent in pornography. However, both the relationship between pornography and condom use among Chinese adults and the mechanisms underlying this relationship are underexplored. This study examined how perceptions of pornography were associated with attitudes toward condom use through the mediating effect of gratification of sexual pleasure and safer sex communication apprehension, and how shared pornography use with a partner during sex moderated these relationships. A total of 658 participants (391 women and 267 men) aged 18–65 years and involved in a romantic relationship completed an online survey assessing pornography consumption, condom use, gratification of sexual pleasure, and safer sex communication apprehension. Results showed that expressive/erotic perceptions of pornography were associated with higher levels of gratification of sexual pleasure, which were, in turn, associated with more negative attitudes toward condom use. Expressive/erotic perceptions of pornography were also associated with lower levels of safer sex communication apprehension and lower levels of negative attitudes toward condom use. Higher levels of shared pornography use with a partner during sex strengthened the direct positive relationship between expressive/erotic perceptions of pornography and negative attitudes toward condom use. Higher levels of shared pornography use during sex also strengthened the positive relationship between expressive/erotic perceptions of pornography and gratification of sexual pleasure, and the negative relationship between expressive/erotic perceptions of pornography and safer sex communication apprehension, which in turn, were significantly associated with attitudes toward condom use. Implications for sexual health education and limitations are discussed.
... MTurk users could access the survey until 550 participants completed it, which occurred about six hours after the survey was made available. In addition to fitting within the research team's budget, this cap provided a comparable sample to those for other online surveys of consumers (e.g., Davis et al., 2018;Miller et al., 2018). Of these initial participants, 74 were excluded because they did not pass an attention check (i.e., a question that asked participants to select a particular option to indicate they were paying attention) and/or provided responses to at least one open-ended question that appeared completely irrelevant (e.g., writing "Jim Carey" or describing the history of the Hollywood studio system when asked to describe how performers were mistreated). ...
Article
Full-text available
Previous research provided limited information regarding pornography consumers’ beliefs and behaviors related to pornography studios mistreating performers, as well as the relationships between these variables. Consumers’ potential impact on studios makes this information important for researchers, as well as individuals and organizations seeking to reduce mistreatment. To address this gap in the literature, this project analyzed data provided by 476 American adult pornography consumers obtained via Amazon Mechanical Turk regarding: consumers’ exposure to media accounts of how studios treat performers, consumers’ beliefs about the prevalence of mistreatment, how often consumers thought about performers or looked for information about how studios treated performers, how consumers looked for this information, and what actions consumers took after determining studios mistreated their performers or being exposed to media accounts of mistreatment. Univariate analyses were conducted to provide a baseline of consumers’ experiences, beliefs, and behaviors, and bivariate and multivariate analyses were conducted to ascertain if data supported anticipated connections between the variables. The results indicated most participants were unconcerned about mistreatment and did not pay attention to, or seek out, information about how studios treat performers, though the majority of participants who learned about mistreatment took at least one type of action. In addition, nearly every anticipated relationship was significant and in the expected direction. Limitations and suggestions for future research are discussed after the presentation of conclusions and implications derived from the analyses.
Article
Social technology is ever-evolving, and increasingly offers novel domains for sexual experiences. In the current study, we investigated demographic correlates of engagement with emerging forms of sextech, defined here as internet-based applications, platforms, or devices used for sexual pleasure. Our web-based, demographically representative sample included 7,512 American adults aged 18-65 years, with a near-even gender split of men/women and moderate racial diversity (63% White). Participants indicated their engagement with eight forms of sextech, including six emerging forms of sexual technology (visiting erotic camming sites, participating in camming streams, teledildonic use, accessing virtual reality pornography, playing sexually explicit video games, and sexual messaging with chatbots or artificially intelligent entities) as well as two more common domains (online pornography and sexting). Participants who were younger, were men, had higher income, and were sexual minorities reported more frequent engagement with all forms of sextech assessed. Unlike prior work on pornography, religious individuals were more likely to engage with emerging sextech. Beyond online pornography (50%) and sexting (29%), visiting camming sites (18%) and playing sexually explicit video games (13%) were relatively common. Findings may contribute to the destigmatization of sextech engagement and forecast future norms in technologically-facilitated sexual behavior.
Article
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore non-violent pornography within secure hospital settings. Design/methodology/approach It includes a systematic review (n = 40 papers), followed by a qualitative study comprising semi-structured interviews (n = 24, 6 patients and 18 staff) and staff focus groups (n = 22 staff). Findings The systematic review identified six themes, as follows: pornography is inconsistently defined, pornography exposure can increase general aggression, pornography exposure may increase the risk for sexual aggression, pornography exposure can increase aggression supportive beliefs, pornography exposure impacts negatively on those with a violent predisposition and pornography is educational for men not identifying as heterosexual. The semi-structured interviews and focus groups revealed four themes as follows: staff members hold diverse beliefs about pornographic material, pornography is difficult to obtain and use for patients who do not identify as heterosexual, pornography is used for specific functions, and frequent exposure to pornography can have negative effects for staff members. Practical implications Trying to obtain consensus on the impacts of pornography on forensic patients is not possible; material access decisions should be on a case-by-case basis. Policy decisions should be based on fully represented views, including the LGBTI community. The impacts on staff of their occupational exposure to such material should be recognised and support provided. Clinical decision-making in this area should consider not only if access should be allowed but also how it can be managed safely, if at all. This includes for all those who could be exposed to such material, inadvertently or otherwise. Originality/value It addresses the under-researched area of patient access to pornography, capturing a poorly considered sample, namely, high secure psychiatric.
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any references for this publication.