It’s July, which means our month-long, annual #StopTheDemand awareness campaign has officially kicked off!
But what is #StopTheDemand?
As you may know already, Fight the New Drug is a non-religious and non-legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography by raising awareness on its harmful effects using only science, facts, and personal accounts.
Throughout July, our educational resources will primarily focus on raising awareness on the connection between the porn industry and various forms of sexual exploitation, objectification, sexual violence, and child exploitation. This will include sharable stories from trafficking survivors, educational articles, and informational resources.
Join us as we raise awareness to stop the demand for pornography and sexual exploitation through education and awareness, rather than restriction. We invite you to educate yourself and others on how the porn industry fuels the demand for exploitation, sex trafficking, objectification, sexualized racism, nonconsensual content, sexual violence and abuse, and child sexual abuse.
So, how is porn connected to sexual exploitation?
As long as there’s a demand for porn—especially porn that is extreme, abusive, or degrading—the porn industry will continue to meet that demand.
Decades of studies from respected academic institutions have demonstrated significant impacts of porn consumption for individuals, relationships, and society. These impacts also include how the porn industry normalizes and fuels the demand for exploitation in various forms.
Stop the demand for sex trafficking
Pornography is the 3rd-most common form of sex trafficking, according to cases reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline.
Sex trafficking shares a variety of symbiotic connections to pornography. Even in the production of mainstream porn, sex trafficking can still occur—and it happens more often than most people think. Even in mainstream porn with popular performers, sex trafficking can still occur—and it happens more regularly than most people think.
Read more: How Porn Can Fuel Sex Trafficking
Listen more: Our podcast episode with Dr. Stephany Powell: Director of Law Enforcement Training & Survivor Services at NCOSE
Stop the demand for objectification
Research shows that people who consume porn frequently are more likely to objectify and dehumanize others.
If we want a culture of true respect and equality, then we need to make sure we think about, talk about, and treat others as whole people—not as objects. Research indicates that consuming porn can normalize sexual objectification and dehumanization, which can have profound consequences in the ways porn consumers view and treat others.
Listen more: Our podcast episode with Aaron Crowley: Ex-Porn Performer, Author, & Anti-Porn Advocate
Stop the demand for sexualized racism
The porn industry didn’t invent racism, but it certainly profits from it. Ideas that originated in Black slavery continue to live on and be graphically depicted in porn.
A 2021 study analyzed videos from popular porn sites and found that porn featuring Black people perpetuate harmful racist stereotypes, disproportionately emphasize violence and aggression, and often depict Black people as “worse than objects.”
Listen more: Our podcast episode with Carolyn West: Psychology Professor, Filmmaker, Author, Speaker, & Domestic Violence Expert
Stop the demand for nonconsensual content
In the porn industry, there is virtually no way to guarantee that any piece of pornographic content is truly consensual, ethical, or even legal. Most major porn sites do not verify the age or consent of all participants involved in the content uploaded to their platforms, making it incredibly easy to upload image-based abuse (sometimes referred to as “revenge porn”).
1 in 12 U.S. adults report that they have been victims of image-based abuse —sometimes called “revenge porn—and 1 in 20 report that they have been perpetrators of image-based abuse.
Watch more: NEW Consent Panel Compilation (Title TBD)
Stop the demand for sexual violence and abuse
1 out of every 8 porn titles shown to first-time users on porn home pages describe acts of sexual violence, according to a 2021 study.
A significant portion of the porn consumed by millions of people every day reinforces the message that sexual violence is a normal part of what “good sex” is supposed to be. According to research analyzing the content of porn videos, it’s estimated that as few as 1 in 3 and as many as 9 in 10 videos show acts of physical aggression or violence.
Read more: How Porn Can Promote Sexual Violence
Watch more: How Porn Can Promote Sexual Violence (Video)
Listen more: Our podcast episode with Dr. Farrington: Activist & Sexual Assault Physician
Stop the demand for child sexual abuse
Some self-generated child sexual abuse material represents a child who was groomed or coerced, while many teens today “share nudes” supposedly willingly.
Of the domestic minor trafficking victims who had been forced into porn, the average age they began being filmed was 12.8 years old.
Listen more: Our podcast episode with Barbi: Anti-Abuse Activist & Child Sexual Abuse Survivor
Help us #StopTheDemand
Since our founding in 2009, Fight the New Drug’s mission has been to decrease the demand for sexual exploitation through education and awareness.DONATE NOW
Help support our efforts to create and share educational resources that bring awareness to the negative impacts of pornography. Help us to #StopTheDemand. Donate $50 to support our efforts, and we’ll give you an exclusive Stop The Demand tote as a FREE gift!
Support this resource
Thanks for taking the time to read through this article! As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, we're able to create resources like this through the support of people like you. Will you help to keep our educational resources free as we produce resources that raise awareness on the harms of porn and sexual exploitation?DONATE