23 December 2009

Why are pornbots so heteronormative?

I'm feeling humored about this, but also curious in an anthropology and psychology sort of way - none of the porn emails that end up in my spambox in Gmail are ever gay or bi or queer in any way.  Ditto the porn bots on Twitter up until a few days ago.  Since then two bots with some variation on the handle "Gay Live" have followed me, most likely because I used a keyword like "fag" in one of my tweets and they automatically added me.  However, this is literally the first time in well over ten years on the internet that gay porn was been advertised to me via spam.  Doesn't this seem odd to you?

The way I see it, we live in a capitalist culture and anything that can be effectively sold through advertising will be.  Obviously all of those spam bots and emails selling porn to straight men generate enough capital to make them worth sending.  Therefore the possibilities are:

1) Queer men don't consume pornography and therefore we aren't marketed to in this way.
2) Queer men consume a comparable amount of pornography compared to straight men, but are less likely to find it through spam advertising.

Clearly we're going with option two.  So then the next question is are we an untapped market to this style of advertising, or are we less responsive to it.  Again, I'm going with the latter.  The more interesting question is, why?  I have my theories. 

As queers, we have to think a lot more about our sexuality in general.  We're already deviating from one of the most deeply entrenched normative values of society, and as a result we delve into and explore various facets of our sexuality more, can articulate our desires and kninks, and have less (or no) shame about them.  Our leather daddies march with their collared boys in Pride parades just as respectably as drag queens, activist groups, knitting groups and queer churches.  And why shouldn't they?  Sex and sexuality is a beautiful part of life that doesn't need to be hidden, but you sure as hell wouldn't know it talking to most straight Americans, doubly so if they live in the 'burbs, attend church regularly, etc., etc.  I think that porn bots and porn spam are for Midwestern accountants who keep their dicks in Mason jars under the sink and can't imagine a world where your Saturday errands are grocceries, returning library books, and stopping off for a new butt plug and some hardcore pornography.

Goddamn, it's good to be a faggot.  Now if I can just permanently block these BritneyFuckedVid bots on Twitter, I'll be set!


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